WORKERS at an industrial yard in Hilsea have defended the way they keep two guard dogs after a video went viral on Facebook showing their alleged bad conditions.
The video, filmed by ex-employee Mick Tattersall, has been seen more than 10,000 times and shows Mick talking to the camera outside Emmerson Transport in Ackworth Road.
In it he claims that the two dogs are being mistreated as they are kept outside at the yard, which is owned by Tom Emmerson and recycles aggregates, and encourages people to go to the site with food and blankets for them. In the footage, one of the dogs is also chained.
In the video, he said: ‘It is absolutely disgusting. I just gave them four packets of Greggs sausage rolls as it upsets me to see dogs treated like this especially as there is CCTV. It is about time someone stood up to [Tom Emmerson]’.
To watch the video scroll to the top of the page.
However, lorry driver Terry Philips, who looks after the dogs’ welfare, has pleaded with the public to stay away. He said that people visiting the site shouting abuse and issuing death threats was upsetting the animals and staff, and that food being given to the dogs was making them ill.
Terry, who has worked at the site for two years, said: ‘They are doing more harm than good. The RSPCA has been and carried out an unannounced inspection, which caught me unawares. I thought it was yet another person coming here to give me abuse.
‘He saw me feeding the dogs and setting the wire up [that one of the dogs is attached to when the yard is closed] and he was happy with everything he saw.’
The News has seen a report from the RSPCA which gave the dogs – and the yard – a clean bill of health.
The two Mastiff-type dogs – called Luna and Magic – have been at the site for about two years. Terry said that one came from a farm and the other had been bred for security purposes and was living in a small cage before coming to the site.
During the day they are kept in an enclosure at the yard due to the lorries working and at night they are allowed to roam the site - with Magic tied to a 150m zip wire and chain to stop her escaping.
Terry said the dogs were brought in by the firm after a spate of break-ins, and they are used as security as well as CCTV to protect the site’s machinery and vehicles.
Mick, from Gosport, said: ‘For the last two years I have been working there and I have seen those dogs caged in that pen. I have had to put up with that for money.’
He added: ‘There’s no need for guard dogs. It is a thing of the past. All I have done on Facebook is ask people’s opinion. My opinion is that it is cruelty.’