A family has lost their beloved pet after it was allegedly shot by a neighbour in South Golden Beach. The owner of the dog was out but the man’s sister and her two-year-old son were home alone when the dog was hit by an arrow.
Police say a man has been charged after shooting the puppy with a longbow.
About 8am last Friday (6 December), police were called to the property on Canowindra Court, South Golden Beach following reports a ten-month-old puppy ‘Bucket’ was shot.
Officers attached to Tweed/Byron Police District were told a man had fired three arrows at Bucket, with the third arrow striking the puppy in the back.
Residents in neighbouring properties took Bucket to the veterinarian in Billinudgel.
The dog’s owner Kris Thompson says he was walking to the lighthouse in Byron when he received a call from his family.
Mr Thomson said when he arrived at the vet he was told that his friend would need to be put to sleep. ‘We got ten minutes with Bucket before they euthanaised him,’ says Kris.
‘This has absolutely destroyed me,’ he said. ‘It’s devastating for our whole family – Bucket was such a lovely dog playing with my nephews. He was such a wonderful family pet.’
The vet treating Bucket was Stephen Van Mil.
Bucket arrived at the clinic right after being shot.
Bucket had a lot of bleeding and he had to be carried into the clinic. On examination the wound was located at the spine just behind the last ribs. He had no sensation in his hind legs and was unable to move them at all.
Bucket was given some pain relief and sedation. X-rays were then performed and the arrow head could clearly be seen where it had smashed into his spine resulting in him not being able to use his back legs at all.
This type of catastrophic injury meant that Bucket would always remain paralysed – to save him from suffering and a poor quality of life he had to be euthanaised.
The Billinudgel staff said that Bucket was a lovely dog who had been a regular at the clinic and it was a tragedy for him to die in such a horrific way at such a young age.
Mr Thompson said he has been overwhelmed by the response of the folk who live at South Golden Beach. ‘What has been amazing has been the community support. I can’t thank people enough.’
Police spoke to a 59-year-old man at the scene and he was arrested and taken to Byron Bay Police Station.
The man was charged with commit an act of aggravated cruelty upon an animal and recklessly beat and seriously injure an animal.
He was granted conditional bail to appear at Byron Bay Local Court on Monday, 13 January, 2020.