My husband and I were walking our 11 year old Beagle up on Cooleman Ridge, Chapman on a Sunday afternoon in September. I am expecting our first child and we were out for a relaxing Sunday afternoon walk in the nature and sunshine.
We unfortunately were approached by some dogs off lead without any owners. A staffordshire bull terrier came up to my dog and started growling and biting him. My husband picked up the beagle and the Staffy then jumped up and latched onto the beagles back leg and wouldn’t let go. When the staffy eventually let go, the staffy started biting into my husband. My husband couldn’t defend himself because he was holding the beagle and his arms were not free. I eventually caught hold of the staffy by the collar and was able to stop it from biting. We called the ambulance and Domestic Animal Services and waited. My husband had facial and arm injuries. My dog’s rear leg nearly broke.
Just before the ambulance arrived, the owner of the dog appeared. He insisted on taking the dog to keep it from biting other people. He gave me his phone number and first name. We weren’t happy about giving him the dog because we were waiting for the ranger from Domestic Animal Services. However, the owner insisted and was making a nuisance of himself, while my husband was on the ground bleeding from the attack. The owner never showed any concern for my husband’s or my dog’s injuries.
When I rang the number of the owner a week later to ask him to pay the vetinerary bills for the bite to my dog the phone went to voicemail. The message asked me to call his office, which is a Criminal Law firm in the ACT. I called the office and this also went to voicemail. So I emailed the veterinary costs to the office, which I found his address on the internet.
He never returned calls or replied to the email. On his website it says they always return calls/emails and don’t drag the chain. However, this is not the case. The owner has never showed any concern at all or enquired as to how my husband was, or how the dog was. He has since said that he will not take any responsibility for the attack.
We have lodged this case with Domestic Animal Services and they have taken written statements. However, the owner has ignored every letter they have sent him.
I took the veterinary bill into the owner’s law firm and left it with the secretary. He had one of his lawyers ring me and accuse me of being abusive to his staff. (The lawyer has also accused us of being abusive to him but we have never seen him since the dog attack). The lawyer that rang me had no concern at all for the injuries that my husband received or about what happened.
So, he is trying a lot of tricks to evade paying any of the costs, and all we were trying to recover was the Emergency Vet Treatment on the day of the attack. We have since had to take our dog to the vet on several occasions with other problems that have arisen because of the attack (eg shoulder pain, unusual skin sores).
I wrote to the ACT Law Society about the conduct of this lawyer, about his negligence and treatment of us. They said they would not investigate because it was a personal matter.
I called A Current Affair and they want to speak to him. I was just wondering if anyone knows how I can find out when lawyers are appearing in our courts, so that we can meet him on route to one of his cases?
He is a really bad man and has no concern for the injuries we received. He will take no responsibility for it. We have called him 10 times now and delivered the bill to him 3 times, but he just ignores it. He has also ignored every letter that Domestic Animals have delivered to him. I just cannot believe how irresponsible someone can be and how uncaring. He lives in the most expensive house in Chapman and can well afford the one veterinary bill that we have asked him to pay. However, he just won’t do anything. We have explained that all the costs from the attack are covered by house insurance, but he just ignores everything.