Act cautiously around unfamiliar dogs, vet warns – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

Log In

Reset Password
BERMUDA | RSS

Act cautiously around unfamiliar dogs, vet warns

The dog that bit British tourist Abigail Alldis is registered as a German shepherd, a restricted breed in Bermuda (Photograph supplied)

Bermuda’s chief veterinary officer has urged members of the public to “act cautiously” when encountering unfamiliar dogs.

Jonathan Nisbett was speaking after a visitor to the island was savagely attacked by a restricted breed on January 2.

Abigail Alldis, 42, was bitten several times on her right arm and needed stitches to her wounds after she tried to examine the collar of a dog which had wandered on to a friend’s property.

She also suffered bruised ribs, cuts and abrasions to her leg and ankle after she climbed over a balcony to escape the attack, which happened on the grounds of the house she was staying in.

The dog was a German shepherd according to its licence.

Mr Nisbett told The Royal Gazette: “We take this opportunity to advise all persons who encounter unfamiliar dogs to act cautiously.

“Dogs will likely bite out of fear, or protection of itself, its owner, its possessions, or its territory.

“Bites often occur when the animal feels it has no other option. However, some dogs are particularly dangerous and will bite with little provocation.

“Present yourself as non-threatening, keep your distance and, if you feel comfortable, invite the animal to come to you.”

Ms Alldis said in an interview last week that she believed the dog, which attacked her twice at a house on Bostock Hill East in Paget, should be put down.

Mr Nisbett said there was an opportunity for the matter to be settled out of court between the dog’s owners and the victim.

However, he added that given the possibility that it could be taken to court, “it would be inappropriate to discuss this matter extensively in the media”.

In deciding the fate of the dog, the wardens will be guided by numerous factors, including the wishes of the victim, the history of offences by the animal or the owner, of which there were none on record, and the ability of the owners to securely keep the animal in the future.

Mr Nisbett said that the owners had indicated that they would pay the medical costs of the victim which were about $900.

He added: “However, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources cannot give assurances regarding when settlement will occur as this is a matter that is agreed between the two parties.”

Bermuda’s animal warden can be contacted directly on 239-2327 or via the police service at 295-0011.

You must be registered or signed-in to post comment or to vote.

Published January 14, 2021 at 7:58 am (Updated January 13, 2021 at 9:07 pm)

Act cautiously around unfamiliar dogs, vet warns

What you
Need to
Know
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon