A family say their beloved dog was ‘scared to death’ by fireworks after suffering a fit on Bonfire Night.
Derry, a 12-year-old rescue dog, was heartbreakingly put down last weekend after his owners found him “thrashing” around on the floor.
Sarah and Mark Frost say their pet suffered internal bleeding after a private firework display near their home in Desford, Leicestershire.
Mark heard a loud noise coming from upstairs and found their tri-coloured collie in serious distress.
Derry then lost control of his body, urinated and defecated and was left unable to walk or move.
He was carried downstairs, where he lay still only able to move his eyes.
Sarah, 54, said the village sounded like a “warzone” before Derry had a fit with firework displays sounding like a “bomb”. The couple have since started a petition to ban the sale of fireworks to the public in the hope no other dog owner has to go what they went through.
Sarah toldLeicestershireLive : “Its not just domestic pets. Its wild animals, livestock and horses too. If I can stop even one family going through what we did over the weekend, Derry will not have died in vain.”
Derry was adopted by the couple in January 2018 at the age of seven. His owners said he was “stressed” and “anxious” when he first arrived, but soon came into his own.
Sarah said: “He had several homes in his life and had quite a lot of trauma. But he had problems that rescue dogs do and we loved him anyway.
“He overcame all of his issues and for the last three and a half years he was such a fantastic, loving dog. He always seemed to be grateful he had a steady home. He knew he belonged. I just wish we could have given him a home for longer.”
Mark, who works at Mole Groundworks in Huncote, carried the dog down the stairs and lay him on a towel. Sarah arrived home at 7.55pm from work and realised something was wrong when all the lights were on upstairs.
She said: “I pulled up on the drive and thought why are all the lights on? I came in to them both in the living room and my heart just dropped. We rushed him to the vet and I sat in the back of the car with him, but he had another fit on the way.
“When we got there, the vet said he had a heart rate of 190 and a high temperature. He had internal bleeding as a result of the fit and his gums where completely white. They said he was too far gone to be able to help and the kindest thing would be to let him go. We were devastated.”
The couple were advised that Derry may have had an underlying condition, which the vets were unable to confirm without carrying out further tests. However, it was concluded: “Essentially he was so scared by the noise it drove him over the edge”.
She added: “I’m 54 and that might be ancient for some people. But when I was a kid fireworks in your garden were noises that went “zing” – these days they sound like bombs. I’m not trying to be a killjoy but for Derry to have lost his life from it – was needless.
“I know we’re not the only family who have gone through this. We went to the vet with a dog that night, and we came home with a collar.”
The couple have not yet reported the incident to the RSPCA. A spokesperson for the animal welfare charity said: “The RSPCA is calling for the UK Government to introduce tighter controls and regulations around the sale and use of fireworks in a bid to help both animals and people who suffer with fireworks phobias and noise aversion; while urging local authorities to introduce localised restrictions too.
“To support the charity’s #BangOutOfOrder campaign, please visit the RSPCA werbsite and send a letter to your local council to put forward changes.”