Man who faced putting his dog down when it bit toddler reunited after raising £2.5k for pet therapy

Owner of Jack Russell which bit a toddler, family friend and others dogs is spared having to put his pet down after raising up to £2,500 for animal behavioural therapy

  • Colin Greaves raised £2,500 to save his dog from possible death sentence 
  • The 53-year-old’s Jack Russell terrier Geddy bit the nose of toddler, 3, in May
  • The pet was able to return home on condition it attends behavioral therapy

A dog lover has been reunited with his Jack Russell terrier after it was confiscated by police and potentially faced a death sentence for biting a three-year-old boy.

Colin Greaves, 53, faced having to have six-year-old pooch Geddy put down after it bit a toddler on the nose while at a family friend’s house in May.

The young boy and the dog were briefly left in the room together until a scream erupted and they returned to find the tot bleeding from his face. 

After the incident police confiscated the dog and inquiries revealed Geddy had previously bitten a family friend, other dogs and even Greaves himself.

The pet had also previously been muzzled and had already attended behavioural classes.

But the former trucker crowdfunded £2,475 fees to pay for an animal behavioural therapist and lawyers while the pet was confined in kennels for six months pending a trial. 

A contingent destruction order was given, which meant the court did not order for Geddy to be put down, it specified the dog must be kept on a lead and muzzled in public.

A condition of the dog’s return was that he undergoes three classes in dog behaviour management and is kept separate when he has visitors at his home in Great Sankey, Warrington, Cheshire.

Colin Greaves was reunited with Geddy, his Jack Russell terrier, after the pet was confiscated by police for biting a three-year-old boy

Colin Greaves was reunited with Geddy, his Jack Russell terrier, after the pet was confiscated by police for biting a three-year-old boy

Greaves crowdfunded £2,500 to afford lawyers and an animal therapist for Geddy

Greaves crowdfunded £2,500 to afford lawyers and an animal therapist for Geddy

A condition of the dog's return was that he undergoes three classes in dog behaviour management and is kept separate when he has visitors at his home

A condition of the dog’s return was that he undergoes three classes in dog behaviour management and is kept separate when he has visitors at his home 

At Sefton magistrates court, Greaves was ordered to pay the unnamed boy £100 compensation after he admitted having a dog dangerous out of control.

After the case he described the matter as a ‘ridiculous mess’ whilst pictures subsequently shared on social media showed him back with his beloved pet.

The incident occurred on May 25 this year after the boy and his mother popped round to see relatives at a time when Greaves and Geddy were also present in the house.

The mother said in a statement: ‘I was on the phone in the kitchen when at around 3.15pm I heard a horrendous sound from the living room. I saw that my son was sitting on Colin’s knee with blood everywhere.

‘I could not see Geddy as he must have been shouted at and ran away. At first glance, it was clear my son had been bitten by the dog and was screaming and in a hysterical state. A lot of blood was coming from his nose and we grabbed tissues and water and we tried to clean the wounds as best as we could

‘There was a cut under the eye and at the top of the bridge of his nose. Me and Colin were panicking, not knowing what to do. Colin then stated that the dog had bitten my son in the face.

‘My son was given a course of antibiotics and did not require stitches. We were informed that the wounds would heal themselves.’

Greaves had sought the help of the campaign group which was set up by the owners of a pit bull dog called Rocky that was seized by police in 2017 under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 (DDA) but later declared exempt

Greaves had sought the help of the campaign group which was set up by the owners of a pit bull dog called Rocky that was seized by police in 2017 under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 (DDA) but later declared exempt

Greaves was fined £120 and was ordered to pay costs and a victim surcharge of £154

Greaves was fined £120 and was ordered to pay costs and a victim surcharge of £154 

She added: ‘There were lots of arguments between me and Colin who was being very defensive of the dog. We received a phone call from the police asking what happened but was Colin was saying, “It’s my dog and you will have to go through me to get my dog”.’

In police interview Greaves said he had momentarily left Geddy alone with the boy then heard screaming and rushed into the living room to find blood coming from the youngster’s face.

Defence solicitor Steve Langton said in mitigation: ‘He is devastated by what happened.

‘There was a dispute about whether the boy’s mother had left the child in the room or whether Mr Greaves had left the child in the room.

‘But he takes responsibility. He accepts that he should have taken greater responsibility for when the boy was there. My instructions are that the circumstances have been exaggerated. Police have no issues with the dog’s general behaviour.’

A court order means that Geddy must be kept on a lead and muzzled in public from now

A court order means that Geddy must be kept on a lead and muzzled in public from now

Mr Langton said that there had been ‘very minor’ incidents in the past with the dog, with the dog nipping his hand when he had tried to cuddle it when it was asleep which resulted in scratches and not bites.

‘However, he accepts that greater care needs to be taken when there’s a child in the house,’ the solicitor said, ‘The injuries are thankfully relatively minor but it’s a three-year-old child. The injuries are very minor but clearly the child has been upset and cut.

‘The child did not require any further treatment. The marks were clear in a week or two.’

Greaves was fined £120 and was ordered to pay costs and a victim surcharge of £154. 

Greaves had sought the help of the campaign group Rocky’s Army BSL and DDA which was set up by the owners of a pit bull dog called Rocky that was seized by police in 2017 under the Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 (DDA) but later declared exempt.

The site provides online support to dog lovers whose pets have been seized by police.

In a statement on Facebook, he said: ‘Finally, after six months in police custody. My best mate Geddy is being released back to me. Massive thanks for all the help in sorting this ridiculous mess out and massive thanks for your incredible support.’

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