Dog saved after being impaled on iron spike

GOOD Samaritans rallied round to save the life of a pet dog after it impaled itself on spiked iron railings at Kenwood House

Marc Mullen

GOOD Samaritans rallied round to save the life of a pet dog after it impaled itself on spiked iron railings at Kenwood House.

Asher Fingerhut, 13, and his eight-year-old sister Nicole were walking two dogs on Hampstead Heath when their three-year-old lurcher, Bobby, darted into the bushes.

After hearing yelps, they chased after Bobby - only to find he had failed to jump over a 5ft fence and landed with a metal spike through his leg.

Asher said: "There was blood and his skin was torn and he was trying to get off.

"We screamed for help and ran to a place where there were people. I think they thought my sister was getting attacked by a dog.

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"The park keepers lifted him off and brought a first aid kit and tried to stop the blood. My sister is still traumatised by it all."

As park keepers and passers-by tried to stem the flow of the blood from the dog's leg, Nicole phoned her father, Jonathan, who drove to the park. One jogger whipped off his T-shirt and wrapped it around Bobby's leg.

When Mr Fingerhut saw the state of the dog, he took it straight to the Beaumont Animal Hospital on Royal College Street rather than wait for an RSPCA ambulance.

Bobby, who the Fingerhuts adopted from Battersea Dogs and Cats Home two years ago, was stretchered into the operating theatre where he underwent a four-hour operation.

The vets were unable to repair the major femoral artery, which had been severed. But, with the help of 30 stitches, they saved Bobby's leg.

Mr Fingerhut, from Lawford Road, Dartmouth Park, said: "They hope that the smaller veins will take up the strain of the femoral artery. He is quite lethargic - but I think his leg has been saved. He has made excellent progress. The vet said if it hadn't been for our children's quick response and the swift help at the scene he would have died. The staff and the passer-by who came to the rescue were brilliant."

Staff at Kenwood have been regularly calling the family to check on Bobby's progress. Head of visitor operations, Paul Griffiths, said: "We are very pleased the dog is making good progress and that our ranger team were able to respond to the dog's distress so quickly and effectively.

"We are also grateful to the passers-by who stopped to help rescue the dog."

Asher said: "He's still got his leg thankfully. We are looking after him and he's doing better."