A COLLIE dog which suffered horrendous burns during a vicious attack is still recovering from his ordeal.
Three-year-old Codie was set on fire by two teenagers near Maghaberry on Sunday morning.
Martin Agnew, who owns the dog, said he is disgusted at the brutal attack.
He said the long-haired Collie’s coat is completely singed with patches of just skin and raw flesh. Her eye is swollen and red and her snout is red raw.
“The smell of her burned flesh is awful,” he said.
Mr Agnew, who is a farmer, explained he has horses and people would often stop to pet them. He said his sons Jake, aged six, and Justin, aged 10, saw two teenagers standing close to the horses at around 9.10am on Sunday morning.
However, soon after the teenagers walked around the back of the farm house towards a quarry.
Mr Agnew said Codie is a friendly, affectionate dog and she probably scampered off with them.
Not long later Codie returned to the house just about able to walk and badly burned.
The farmer said some lighter fluid had been left close to the quarry after a barbecue earlier in the year, and he believes the teenagers may have squirted it at Codie and set the dog on fire.
“We are just disgusted. I couldn’t believe it. I don’t know how anyone could do that,” he said.
Mr Agnew, whose farm is just about 200 yards off the main road at Maghaberry Hill, doesn’t understand what the teenagers were doing at his farm at that time on a Sunday morning.
He said the emergency vet from Moira responded quickly and put Codie on a drip, gave her injections and tended her wounds. She is still being cared for by the vet and is making a slow recovery, however the vet is pleased with her progress.
British and Irish Lions rugby international Stephen Ferris, who is a friend of Mr Agnew’s, described the attack as “inhumane”.
“I was up at the north coast on Saturday and came home to a pretty horrific story,” he said.
“I think it is just vandalism of the nastiest sort.
“The dog is as friendly as they come.
“Hopefully the poor thing can pull through.”
Mr Ferris said he hoped those responsible for the attack would be caught.
Police in Lisburn investigating this crime are appealing for witnesses or anyone with information to contact them at Lisburn police station on 0845 600 8000. If someone would prefer to provide information anonymously they can contact the Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.