The owner of an out-of-control dog who chased a horse into the sea could be prosecuted if the dog is found loose in the area in future.
The man, whose Hungarian vizsla chased Tracey Berryman’s mare Spring, ridden by Tracey’s niece Milly, was found by police and has since signed a voluntary dog control order.
Tracey Berryman was at the beach with Milly and Spring on 7 January when the dog escaped from its owner and chased Spring, causing Milly to fall off. Following a police enquiry the owner was found and issued with the order, which includes keeping the dog on a lead when being walked on or near the seafront.
Tracey told H&H she hopes the order will protect others.
“The man must must have known his dog was out of control and it should have been on a lead,” said Tracey.
“I felt so helpless watching Spring get chased into the sea — the man allowed his dog to hunt and hound my horse. If Spring hadn’t stopped once she got into the water and his dog hadn’t lost interest it could have been so much worse – I could have lost her.
“I received a call from the police to say they found the owner. The witnesses had been so helpful. The man was asked to sign the order and Milly had to sign it to say she was happy with the outcome. Going forward if the man breaches the order he could be prosecuted.”
Tracey said the police “couldn’t have been more helpful”.
“I didn’t think it was police worthy – dogs chase horses — but because of the man’s attitude and the fact he refused to call it off, I rang them. I could not have asked for any more from the police, they rang me daily after the incident and were so proactive, I felt really supported,” she said.
Tracey said since the incident Milly and Spring are both fine.
“Milly is brilliant, she’s such a gentle person and doesn’t have any anger – the worst part for her was seeing the dog lunging at Spring. I was worried how Spring would be around dogs but we’ve hacked her since and she’s been around dogs again and hasn’t harboured anything against them,” said Tracey.
Tracey’s 17-year-old niece, Milly, fell off during the incident
Police are appealing for video footage after the rider was chased for 15 minutes
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“I’ll never go back to Exmouth beach but I may go somewhere a bit quieter, and do my research first.”
Tracey is urging riders to wear hat cameras while hacking, and report incidents.
“The police had asked if we had footage of the incident but I was too worried about Spring to film what was happening and when people offered footage at the time I was rushing to get to my niece,” she said. “The police said footage would have been useful so I really recommend riders where cameras when riding.”
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