Cats killed after dogs get into Mill Hill garden

Mr Cracknell with son Ryan and daughter Amie

The cats were mauled to death

First published in News Times Series: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

A family watched in horror as their cat was “thrown around like a ragdoll” and savaged by vicious dogs who tore into their back garden.

Steve Cracknell, and his children, Amie, 22 and Ryan, 23, of Oakhampton Road, Mill Hill, were left traumatised after Guinness (below) was brutally attacked and killed by two “mongrel-like dogs”.

Guinness, 13, was killed on Tuesday

Times Series:

Their house backs onto Hendon Crematorium and the animals got into their garden through a gap in the fence just before 7am on Tuesday.

In January this year, one of their three cats, Brambles, (below) was also mauled to death in a similar incident.

Brambles, also 13, was brutally savaged in January 

Times Series:

Mr Cracknell, 55, said: “We feel distraught. There’s no description for it. We’ve all been left so shaken by what happened.

“I heard a commotion and looked outside to see two dogs throwing him about like a ragdoll. There wasn’t a lot of blood but he had a lot of cuts on him. It was heartbreaking.

“When I ran down the garden they tried to escape by swerving under the fence and one still had Guinness in his mouth. I managed to chase the dogs until they dropped him.”

The cat was alive when the electrician carried him back into the house and he immediately phoned the vet to ask for help.

But mid-conversation, Guinness died from his injuries in Amie’s arms.

The family phoned both 999 and 101 who told them it was not a police matter as it was not considered an emergency.

Tabby cat Brambles and black and white Guinness had been family pets since they were kittens. Their remaining cat, Smokey, has now been banned from going outside.

Times Series:

Mr Cracknell, a former firefighter, added: “I’ve been trying to find out who the dogs belong to but I’ve been unsuccessful. They were bigger than a Staffie but smaller than a Labrador. One had a collar.

“My grandson, Liam, is four and sometimes he plays in the garden alone – the dogs could have got him.

“I am really upset. I consider myself a hard person but that was very traumatic. It was awful. In all my years as a firefighter, I was just as upset seeing my cats die as I was at any incident I've attended.”

Police have now made an appointment to visit the family to take a statement about the incident.

Comments (2)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

7:36pm Thu 24 Jul 14

DJFearRoss says...

Something seriously needs to be done about these dogs. The number of times my children have been left in tears by dogs, who owners have just let them run up to my small children.

The worst is dog owners just don't care! The usual excuse is, he's just being friendly, he just wants to play or more normal now, is to blame the children for being scared of them! These dogs are running around with no leads, intimidating families, joggers and even other dogs. When is the council going to start acting?

"He'd never hurt a fly", "i've got dogs, i'm an animal lover" etc etc
Something seriously needs to be done about these dogs. The number of times my children have been left in tears by dogs, who owners have just let them run up to my small children. The worst is dog owners just don't care! The usual excuse is, he's just being friendly, he just wants to play or more normal now, is to blame the children for being scared of them! These dogs are running around with no leads, intimidating families, joggers and even other dogs. When is the council going to start acting? "He'd never hurt a fly", "i've got dogs, i'm an animal lover" etc etc DJFearRoss
  • Score: 13

8:37am Wed 30 Jul 14

Edgar de Jarnac says...

DJFearRoss says: “Something seriously needs to be done about these dogs”. What I say is that something seriously needs to be done about these dogs’ owners.

Why do so many people buy fierce breeds of dog and then fail to train them and control them properly, putting children, pets and wildlife at risk? Perhaps there should be a law that prevents dog owners from unleashing their charges in public places unless they have been trained to an appropriate standard.

Even placid pooches can be a nuisance if not properly trained. I live near Arrandene and used to enjoy peaceful walks there, but it is tranquil no longer. Years ago I would meet the odd dog owner escorting a well-behaved pet, but nowadays I pass growing numbers of noisy dog walkers who have no idea how to control their charges. They shriek commands at their pets, even though the animals clearly have no intention of obeying them. Instead, the creatures run about wherever they please, sometimes racing over to me to put their muddy paws on my clean clothes. Instead of an apology, all I get is a pathetic: “He only wants to be friendly.”

Personally, I would like to see them all put down — but then, who would look after their dogs?
DJFearRoss says: “Something seriously needs to be done about these dogs”. What I say is that something seriously needs to be done about these dogs’ owners. Why do so many people buy fierce breeds of dog and then fail to train them and control them properly, putting children, pets and wildlife at risk? Perhaps there should be a law that prevents dog owners from unleashing their charges in public places unless they have been trained to an appropriate standard. Even placid pooches can be a nuisance if not properly trained. I live near Arrandene and used to enjoy peaceful walks there, but it is tranquil no longer. Years ago I would meet the odd dog owner escorting a well-behaved pet, but nowadays I pass growing numbers of noisy dog walkers who have no idea how to control their charges. They shriek commands at their pets, even though the animals clearly have no intention of obeying them. Instead, the creatures run about wherever they please, sometimes racing over to me to put their muddy paws on my clean clothes. Instead of an apology, all I get is a pathetic: “He only wants to be friendly.” Personally, I would like to see them all put down — but then, who would look after their dogs? Edgar de Jarnac
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree