Call for tougher laws to prevent dog attacks

Ryan Booth was attacked by a dog and lost part of his ear.
Ryan Booth was attacked by a dog and lost part of his ear.

Radio Clyde has launched a campaign calling for a review of the current legislation to prevent dog attacks.

The campaign – entitled ‘Lead the Way’ – comes as MSPs were this week due to debate a motion raised on the station’s behalf by Airdrie and Shotts MSP Alex Neil.

The motion received backing from all political parties, including support from Eastwood MSP Jackson Carlaw and West Scotland MSPs Maurice Golden and Derek Mackay.

The station has asked the Scottish Government to either ring-fence cash for animal control wardens so that the Control of Dogs Act can be properly enforced or re-introduce a licence fee with the funds put towards animal control wardens.

The campaign has the backing of the Scottish SPCA, the Royal Mail and the Communications Workers Union. and families of victims.

Claire Booth’s son Ryan was attacked in 2015. He was six years old at the time of the attack and has undergone five surgeries to repair damage to his ear, which was ripped off.

Claire said: “It’s been an emotional rollercoaster. Ryan in appearance is doing brilliant but he has a disfigurement. He is terrified of dogs now and I have experienced a lot of emotional trauma as a result of watching these two dogs maul my son.

“I really thought they were going to kill him. I was powerless to pull them off him.

“They were so heavy … and when Ryan was screaming out I was just terrified they would get his throat.”

Lorraine Herbison, head of news and sport for Bauer Media Scotland, said: “This is an important issue which needs to be addressed to ensure adequate protection is in place.

“By speaking about this issue on air we hope we can help to spread the message and possibly even spur on a change in the law for the better.”