Dogs maul cat in front of elderly Te Kauwhata woman
BELINDA FEEK AND ELTON SMALLMAN
An 86-year-old Te Kauwhata woman could only stand by and watch helplessly as two dogs mauled her granddaughter's cat to death.
It was the third dog attack in the Waikato this month after a dog set upon a girl and then savagely attacked a dog in front of its traumatised owner in Whangamata.
The dog's owner was in talks with the Thames-Coromandel District Council.
In Te Kauwhata yesterday morning, Gay Kirkpatrick could only try to kick the dogs away but her attempt was fruitless as they violently wrenched Harry, a 14-year-old cat, to death.
"They were working as a pair. One on one end of the cat and the other, just about tearing it apart," said Mrs Kirkpatrick. "It was all over in just a matter of minutes."
Mrs Kirkpatrick was talking to Harry, trying to get him to eat his biscuits when one of the dogs suddenly appeared.
"It came along the edge and then it saw Harry and diverted to here," she said. "Next thing he had it by the throat."
The second dog came through the clutter of branches in Mrs Kirkpatrick's front garden just metres from the concrete porch and joined the fray.
"It appeared and attacked Harry from the back end. I rushed over and kicked it and did all I could but it had no effect whatsoever." The dogs dragged Harry 20 metres down the lawn to the roadside "chewing at it all the time and trying to pull it apart".
"I came back because I could see that Harry had had it and there was nothing I could do. They spent quite a bit of time mauling it after I'm sure he was dead."
The cat belonged to Mrs Kirkpatrick's 25-year-old granddaughter, Mei.
Mei got Harry as a present from her grandmother when she was 12. She's been left devastated by her pet's horrific death.
"I'm upset and I'm angry. It's the second cat that we have lost in a year. We had my sister's cat that died down there due to medical complications, but it still sucks. We had two cats, now we don't have any, and to lose my cat in such a horrible horrible way . . . I'm just glad they didn't turn on [my grandmother, Gay Kirkpatrick]."
Mei, who also owns dogs, said she only now hopes that the "irresponsible" dog owner could at least offer an apology and then hopefully hand the dogs in.
"I just worry, if next time it could be a child, they wouldn't have had a chance."