A dog shot dead by police after attacking two men is thought to have been previously abandoned and then rescued by one of the people it attacked, it has emerged.
The owner of the “large bulldog-type dog” was taken to hospital with serious injuries after the attack in Tinto View, Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, on Tuesday evening.
Armed officers attended due to the dog being dangerously out of control and the animal was shot dead by police after attempting to attack an officer.
Another man was targeted by the dog on Loudonhill Avenue shortly before the incident on Tinto View and was taken to Hairmyres Hospital in East Kilbride for treatment for minor injuries.
Zeeshan Rashid, owner of the Day Today convenience shop on Silverton Avenue in Hamilton, said the dog and its owner had been in the shop shortly before the second attack.
He believes the dog was previously abandoned before being rescued by its new owner, stating it had “lots of scars on its face”.
“The dog was very nice to be honest – it came in a couple of times during shift,” he said.
“We always keep dog treats so whenever he came in with his owner we would give him one.
“He never gave us any bother in the shop. I don’t know what happened that day, whether something was wrong with the dog or not.
Dog shot dead by police after attack leaves man fighting for life
“I think it had been abandoned before its new owner as it had lots of scars on its face.
“His new owner looked after the dog very well. I think he had spent a lot of money on saving him.”
Mr Rashid said he believes police killing the animal was “too much” and he suggested dogs should instead be tranquillised in such circumstances.
He said the owner was still in hospital as of Wednesday, but he has not heard anything since.
On Wednesday, an eyewitness told STV News it had taken four shots to stop the dog from attacking police.
There was reported speculation among the local community that the dog was an XL bully that had been brought to Scotland and rehomed following a ban on the breed south of the border, however police said the dog’s exact type has not been established.
A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “The body of the dog which was shot dead by armed officers during an incident at Tinto View in Hamilton on Tuesday was taken for specialist veterinary assessment.
“The animal is described as a large bulldog-type dog but it was not possible to establish its specific breed or history from this assessment.
“Inquiries remain ongoing into the circumstances of the incident.”
The Scottish Ambulance Service attended the scene following the incident and took the dog owner to the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow with serious injuries.
As a firearm was used in the incident, it has been reported to the Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (PIRC).
Scotland’s XL bully dog ban imminent
XL bully dogs in Scotland will soon be subject to new safeguards as the Scottish Government replicates the legislation in place south of the border.
The Scottish Government has accepted there has been an influx of XL bullies to Scotland since the change in the law in England on December 31 banned the breeding, selling or abandonment of the dogs.
The first phase of the Scottish regulations will make it an offence to sell, abandon, give away, or breed an XL bully.
A date for when the rules will officially be imposed has yet to be confirmed, however owners wishing to keep their dogs will need to keep the XL bully on a lead and muzzled in public.
The second phase will see owners able to apply for their dogs to be added to an exemption index to keep them.
The Scottish Government will also look to make potential improvements to the 2010 Control of Dogs Act to enhance the preventative dog control notice scheme.
PIRC has been asked for comment.
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