Three men with nine muzzled greyhounds were seen walking to Hartlepool pier. One man then threw the dog into North Sea before yanking it back out on long line. RSPCA urging anyone with information to come forward about the incident.
This is the shocking a moment a heartless dog owner threw his terrified greyhound into the freezing sea. Witnesses reported seeing three men with nine muzzled greyhounds walking towards the pier in Hartlepool, County Durham.
Disturbingly, one of the men was then seen repeatedly throwing a dog into the water and yanking it back out on a long line on Thursday, November 2.
One witness, who did not wish to be named, said he and his children were left shaken by what they saw happening to the animals.
He said: ‘They were being carried out to the end of the structure and unceremoniously flung in from a height of about 4ft and a distance, through the air, of 6ft.
‘The waves were quite strong and my first thought was, once they had surfaced, what if they were propelled by the crashing waves into the rusting sides of the pier?
‘There was a significant number of dogs in the group and it appeared that they were being taken out one by one.’
John Stephenson, who runs Greyhound Rescue North East, was shocked to hear what had happened and said he hadn’t heard of this practice before.
He said: ‘I have never heard of anything like this before, there is just no logic to it.
‘Why on earth would anyone throw a dog into the sea like this in freezing cold conditions, it is just stupid.’
The RSPCA is urging anyone with information to come forward about what has been described as a ‘distressing’ incident.
A spokeswoman for the RSPCA, said: ‘We are still making inquiries after we received a concerning report that a group of men with a number of dogs were seen in Hartlepool repeatedly throwing one of the dogs – a greyhound – into the water on Thursday, November 2.
‘An inspector launched an investigation and attended the scene, but the group was no longer there.
‘Since then we have been contacted by a member of the public who provided photos of what appears to be a man throwing the dog into the water.
‘These images are very distressing and we would urge anyone who may have witnessed this, or may have more information which could help an investigation, to contact us on 0300 1234 999.’
Why do people torture animals?
Animal torture and cruelty is one of the three adolescent behaviours in what is often referred to the ‘Homicidal Triad’, the other two being persistent bedwetting and obsessive fire-setting. Some criminologists and psychologists believe that the combination of two or more of these three behaviours increases the risk of homicidal behaviour in adult life. However, scientific evidence for this has been mixed. There has also been research into some of the contributory factors as to why a minority of children engage in IATC. Research has shown that the behaviours in the ‘Homicidal Triad’ (including IATC) are often associated with parental abuse, parental brutality (and witnessing domestic violence), and/or parental neglect.