Angry dog owner says hazards at river need sorting

Andy Collier with his Border Terrier called Archie who was injured by a sharp object under the water at Apple Dumpling Bridge in Gosport.''Picture: Paul Jacobs  (131670-1)
Andy Collier with his Border Terrier called Archie who was injured by a sharp object under the water at Apple Dumpling Bridge in Gosport.''Picture: Paul Jacobs (131670-1)
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DOG owner Andy Collier wants someone to take action after his beloved pet was hurt while playing in water.

His border terrier Archie was left in agony after he cut his front leg on glass in The River Alver at Apple Dumpling Bridge, Browndown.

Mr Collier, pictured with Archie, noticed the wound after he got out of the water and saw blood trailing behind.

After doing his best to stop the bleeding, he took Archie to Companion Care Vets, where staff discovered the dog had torn a tendon.

Mr Collier said there were no signs warning owners of hazards in the river and others have told him their pets have been in similar situations. ‘I was informed by a neighbour, who was at the bridge at the time, that another dog was similarly injured shortly after I left,’ he said.

‘I’m concerned that animals may get injured, but equally a child or even an adult could suffer the same fate.’

Gosport Borough Council says it doesn’t have responsibility for the river and nor has the time to check for hazards.

Mr Collier, 64, who lives in Bridgemary, said: ‘The council is wavering in its duty of care. Apple Dumpling Bridge is being promoted as a recreational area.

‘There’s a bench to attract people to sit. There’s an absence of warning signs.’

A council spokeswoman said: ‘We’re very sorry to hear about the injury incurred by the dog.

‘The countryside team regularly check all of our sites for potential hazards and record findings as part of the management of the site.

‘However the waterway is not our responsibility and we do not have the facilities to trawl the River Alver for debris.

‘The moving water of a river will uncover and carry debris along, only to deposit it where it will get covered in silt making it difficult to spot.

‘The Environment Agency, which is responsible for waterways, does not allow its operatives into water without adequate protection including Teflon boots and gloves.

‘We therefore believe the sensible precaution would be not to allow your child, dogs or even yourself to enter a river where you cannot clearly see what is on the bottom.’