Vicious attack on Sebastopol pet dogs

THE savage mauling of two small dogs has raised safety concerns for children in the Sebastopol area.Jenny Clifford and her partner Adam Scott fear students attending the Phoenix P-12 Community College could be a target for vicious dogs in the neighbourhood.Their claims follow an attack on Ms Clifford’s pets, which left a 16-year-old Jack Russell dead, another nine-year-old badly injured and Ms Clifford with thousands of dollars in vet bills.The incident comes at a time when the state government is cracking down on dangerous dogs, with new laws precipitated by the mauling death of four-year-old Ayen Chol in St Albans last year.Meanwhile, a Ballarat family is fighting in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal against the seizure of their dog by City of Ballarat officers.Mr Scott told The Courier he returned to Ms Clifford’s premises earlier this month to find part of the house covered in blood, with one dog suffering inside and another unconscious in the backyard.Sassy was later euthanised in a Melbourne veterinary clinic, while Scooby is still recovering from his extensive injuries.City of Ballarat officers seized the dogs alleged to have been involved in the attack, but returned them to their owners following an investigation which failed to uncover any witnesses.Council confirmed the same dogs had been involved in an earlier incident, but decided against further action because no injuries were inflicted at the time.The return of the dogs to their owners has angered Mr Scott, who says they are a “danger to society”.“Since then (Jenny) hasn’t stayed (at her house). She refuses to stay there. She’s too scared to come back because of the animals,” Mr Scott, 38, said.“She has been staying with me ever since and has given notice on the place. (She) will be moving her furniture out in the next week.”What do you think? Have your say belowMr Scott said one of the dogs chased him moments after the incident.“I got through the door, shut it and the dog hit the back of the door,” he said.Ms Clifford, 40, who operates a mobile dog grooming business, has been left shaken by the attack.“What if Adam’s four-year-old daughter had have been in the backyard? If someone else moves in (to the house) I’m going ... to tell them about the dangerous dogs,” she said.A City of Ballarat spokesperson said the dogs were returned to their owners because no case could be proven against them.“Council officers attended the scene and spoke with the owner of the dogs and the owner of the animals believed to be involved,” the spokesperson said.Council said the owners of the seized dogs would be issued with infringement notices for having unsecured and unregistered dogs. They were ordered to repair fencing at their property and register the dogs before they were returned.