A police horse has been injured after a dog attack in an east London park, police have confirmed.
Video circulating on social media shows a dog attacking the horse while two mounted officers were on patrol in Victoria Park, in the London borough of Tower Hamlets.
The horse, known as Urbane, suffered bite wounds to its leg and torso and had to be taken to the vet but is expected to return to duty after recovering.
Footage of the attack on social media shows Urbane buckling as the dog clamped its jaws around its leg, refusing to release its grip for several seconds. A man can be seen jabbing at the dog with a large stick as an officer is heard shouting “get hold of that dog.”
Another person then manages to pull the dog away, before the officer riding Urbane dismounts and shouts “get that lead on that dog now.” In the video, a crowd of onlookers watch and one can be heard saying: “This is so bad.”
The dog has since been seized by police.
On Thursday, the Metropolitan police taskforce, which includes the force’s mounted branch, posted photos of the horse after the attack that show it sustained bite wounds to its legs and torso.
In a post on Twitter, a spokesperson for the taskforce said: “PH (police horse) Urbane from Bow was attacked by a dog off the lead in Victoria Park yesterday. We can’t stress enough how important it is to keep dogs on a lead if you can’t recall them or get them under control.
“Huge thanks to members of public who tried to help Urbane. He has been to the vets and is having some well-earned recuperation. He will hopefully be back on duty as soon as he has fully recovered but not before.”
The owner of the dog Hakan Niyazi yesterday, defended his "friendly" dog and tried to blame the horses for the assault, which took place just after midday at Victoria Park in Hackney, East London.
"It might look like I wasn’t doing much but I was trying my hardest. I tried to grab her.
"She was intimidated by the horse. She felt threatened.
"I thought the horse was going to kick me. If it kicks me I’m dead. If it killed me then people would be feeling sorry for me."
He even criticised the have-a-go hero passer-by who stepped in to help, using a long stick to keep the dog at bay.
"The guy was rude," Niyazi, who has had Coco for around a year, said.
"I was so angry at the time. He said I didn’t do nothing. I tried.
A Little Thought:
The owner of the dog must be prosecuted as he showed a complete lack of respect for others with having his dog off the lead, this could easily have been a child.