A family has been left traumatised after their pet dog was pecked to death – by a gang of marauding SEAGULLS.
Devastated mum-of-four Emily Vincent says her Yorkshire Terrier Roo was savaged so badly by the birds he suffered a brain haemorrhage.
But she has also been told by officials she can’t take revenge on the gulls – because they are PROTECTED.
The cute dog had been playing in his back garden when the herring gulls swooped down from the roof and started viciously attacking him.
Two of her young children witnessed the attack that left tiny Roo with a head wound and brain damage and he was later put down by a vet.
Emily has been told by a council she can’t touch the birds which are nesting on her roof – and she now fears they might attack her KIDS.
Emily, 36, of St Columb Minor, Cornwall, now fears for the safety of her children, Jessie, one, Jace, three, Jasmine, nine and Jade, 14, and two Maltese Terriers Millie and Louis.
She said: “Jace was with Roo in the garden and then all of a sudden Jace started screaming ‘Roo is bleeding’.
“I ran into the kitchen and saw Roo lying on his side and there was blood everywhere.
“Roo had managed to run indoors and then collapsed. Blood was coming out of his head. It was like a murder scene.
“I couldn’t get any sense out of Jace initially but then he kept saying the big bird has got a sharp beak. Roo was still breathing so we rushed him to the vets.
“He was initially stable but he was not responding to anything the vets tried because the brain damage so he had to be put down.
“Jace has been totally traumatised and randomly bursts out crying. I have not stopped crying and now I’ve reached the angry stage.
“It could have been my child that was hurt and there is nothing I can do about it. My other two dogs are too scared to go into the garden and Jace is not himself.
“There should be more done to protect people and their pets. Roo was like another child to me. The whole family is grieving. It has been horrific.
“We will now not let the children or the dogs out in the garden unless we are with them.”
It is believed the birds were protecting their nest when they swooped down to attack Roo.
But Emily is now living in fear of other attacks after being told by Cornwall Council that the law prohibits her from getting rid of the seagulls as they are a protected species.
She is especially worried as Jessie and Jace suffer from epilepsy and a blow to the head could trigger a severe seizure.
She said: “When we got back from the vets I wanted to take it further. I took pictures of the blood and contacted the council to find out what rights I had about getting rid of the nest.
“I could not get a straight answer from anyone but I was eventually told the seagulls are protected and that I must leave the nest alone.”
Devon and Cornwall Police has warned that herring gulls are a protected species which includes the birds, their nests, eggs and chicks.
It is an offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to intentionally kill, injure or take any wild bird or intentionally take, damage or destroy the nest of any wild bird while it is in use or being built.
Wildlife Crimes Officer, PC Paul Freestone said: “People need to be aware of the law. As soon as a gull lays down just a few bits of material to start a nest, that nest is protected.”