Express & Star

Man and dog saved in rottweiler attack

A dog owner has paid tribute to the brave woman who helped save his labrador's life after a shocking rottweiler attack.


Gordon Mill has relived the terrifying moment two out-of-control rottweilers charged at him and his labrador Ghillie from out of nowhere, before carrying out a vicious 20 minute attack on the pair.

The 62-year-old was walking his dog around the block near his home in Wolverhampton when the rottweilers attacked, going straight for the helpless Ghillie who suffers from severely impaired sight.

Dog and owner were dragged down the street by the beasts as the attack intensified.

Gordon, who had attempted to use himself to protect his beloved 15- year-old labrador, shouted for help and his screams were heard by nearby resident Claudia Tarbuck.

Claudia looked out of her window at her home in Kinver Drive, Warstones, and saw Mr Mill battling to fight off the rottweilers.

Gordon Mill of Warstones, with Ghillie, and neighbour Claudia Tarbuck who saved the 15-year-old dog from rottweilers

Bravely, she armed herself with a baseball bat and charged outside. The rescuer hit the rottweilers until they stopped their attack on Mr Mill, his pet – and herself.

She said: "I heard Gordon shouting for help and looked out of my window to see these dogs just completely tearing into him and Ghillie.

"It sounds bad now but I thought, should I step in here?

"Instinct just took over and before I knew it I was out there.

"I love big dogs and I have had them all of my life but it looked to me like these could have easily killed Gordon and Ghillie and I couldn't let that happen."

She continued: "They tried to attack me after I struck them but I just kept hitting them to keep them back.

"I was defending myself as well as Gordon and Ghillie.

"When the police arrived I had blood on my clothes and when they asked me where it came from I honestly couldn't tell them whether it was Gordon's, Ghillie's or the rottweilers.

"The whole thing was a blur to me."

Gordon with Ghillie

The attack resulted in Gordon, of Stourton Drive, Warstones, being hit with a vet's bill for £781, which he had to ask his sister to help pay.

The owner of the dogs has also appeared before magistrates who heard that this is not the first incident involving his dogs

Gordon says Claudia's bravery probably saved his dog's life.

"I was in danger of losing Ghillie if somebody hadn't stepped in.

"It was so brave of Claudia to come to our aid, it must have been terrifying for her," he said. "When the police arrived, a lady from their dog unit told me that Ghillie had to be taken to an emergency vets straight away or else I could lose him.

"I recovered pretty quickly from my injuries, they had bitten my wrists and there was damage to my knees but I didn't want to go to hospital, I just wanted to make sure my dog was going to be OK.


"Ghillie had both of his back legs almost completely crushed and had to have 35 stitches on his left rear leg.

"The vet also shaved around his neck so I think they got him there too.

"I can't thank Claudia enough really, but I took her round some flowers and chocolates when I was back on my feet as a gesture. "To do what she did showed great bravery and I am truly grateful," the dog owner added. The ordeal left Ms Tarbuck in a state of shock for a number of days afterwards.

She said: "It really hit me hard, I was terrified, adrenaline took over but I was still so scared.

"I broke down when everything started to calm and didn't stop shaking for four days.

"Obviously you don't think of doing this for the credit but Gordon's sister paid me a visit shortly after and said if it wasn't for me she wouldn't have a brother.

"Gordon came round with Ghillie to thank me too, which was great for me, he is a lovely dog."

The owner of the rottweilers, 65-year-old Sidney Cox, appeared at Wolverhampton Magistrates Court last week and pleaded guilty to being in charge of a dangerous and out-of-control dog.

Mr Mark Cooper, prosecuting, said: "A member of the public heard the squeals of the dog and the man before coming to their aid. One of the rottweilers ran away after the first strike but the other came back a few times before it finally left the scene. Another witness described this as a sustained attack on the labrador."

Cox, of Swancote Drive, Warstones, has since invested in a chained fence to keep his dogs more secure but the court heard similar incidents had happened with his dogs in the past.

Defence solicitor Mr Towers said: "The defendant has already purchased a proper chained fence to secure the dogs in light of this incident.

"He is also the sole carer for his wife, who suffers from medical issues, as does he."

Cox was granted unconditional bail until April 30, when a police report on the two dogs will be heard in court.

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