Tayside and Central Scotland

Angus death row dog appeal refused

A Rottweiler that attacked a Canadian tourist will be destroyed after a legal bid to save the animal failed.

The Sheriff Appeal Court in Edinburgh ruled that the dog, called Kai, must be put down.

The Rottweiler repeatedly bit tourist Charles Andrews in Montrose in June last summer and a sheriff subsequently ordered it to be destroyed.

The animal's owner, Wendy Ross, 34, instructed lawyers to seek a reprieve for the two-year-old dog.

James Ryan, 62, was convicted of being in charge of the dog when it repeatedly bit Mr Andrews, following a trial at Forfar Sheriff Court in November.

'Bleeding a lot'

A 17-year-old student, who cannot be named for legal reasons, told the trial that she witnessed the incident.

She said: "I saw one of his legs had been bitten and he was bleeding a lot."

Ms Ross, of Montrose, gave evidence in the case and said Kai was a "loving dog" who was taken out for a walk without her permission.

At the conclusion of the case, Sheriff Gregor Murray ordered that the dog be destroyed.

He said: "In my opinion the dog was dangerously out of control. It is a matter of considerable regret that I consider Kai would constitute a danger to public safety.

"I have every sympathy for Ms Ross but the fact is the legislation compels me."

Public danger

Solicitor advocate Jim Stephenson told the Sheriff Appeal Court that experts believed the dog could be spared.

Mr Stephenson said the animal could be neutered and given a muzzle, which could stop it biting.

The lawyer told the court that Ms Ross was willing to give up ownership of the dog if the appeal was successful.

However, the court ruled that Sheriff Murray acted correctly and that the animal must be destroyed.

Sheriff Principal Mhairi Stephen QC said: "On the day of the offence, Kai presented a danger to the public.

"Even if the dog was to be neutered and muzzled, it still shows that the dog constitutes a danger.

"We fail to see to how the sheriff erred in law. In our view the appeal falls to be refused."

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