Warning for pet owners after 'devastating' dog attack on joeys

Dog owners are being urged to take responsibility for their pets, after a brutal attack on a group of orphaned kangaroos.

Two joeys were killed and four others suffered puncture wounds to their bodies after a large “staffy-like dog” entered a property used for wildlife rehabilitation at Herron, 75km south of Perth.

Kangaroo carer Jenny Norton was alerted to the problem after hearing noises on the night of October 24. As a dog circled the pen, one joey took flight, jumping over the high fence and into the dog’s path. “He was attacked by this dog and got multiple bites on his legs and he got six broken ribs,” she told Yahoo News Australia.

Left - Two joeys hugging. Centre - Two joeys touching noses. Right - a joey looking at the camera.
Two joeys died and four were injured following a dog attack at Peel Marsupial Care. Source: Supplied

Five nights later, the dog returned. After bending the strong metal gate open it pushed its way into the purpose-built joey protection pen.

“The joeys just went into flight mode again and smashed themselves against the fence,” Ms Norton said. “One’s face was smashed in and he broke a leg, so he had to be euthanised.”

“One got out of the fence and returned that night with broken tendons and a broken leg. He also had to be euthanised,” Ms Norton continued.

Read more about dogs attacking Australia's wildlife:

Carer's heartbreak after joey deaths: 'It's devastating'

The western grey kangaroo joeys were raised at Ms Norton’s sanctuary, Peel Marsupial Care, from when they were 400 grams in weight. They were approximately 16kg when they were euthanised.

“To watch them be laid down on the ground and shot in the head after caring for them for two years, it’s devastating,” she said.

Left - the gate that the dog pushed through. Right - An image of the joey enclosure.
The dog pushed its way through the metal gate (left). Source: Jenny Norton

Weeks later, Ms Norton has been unable to identify the dog that attacked her joeys. While she's hoping to locate the animal responsible, she's also calling on pet owners to make sure their animals are kept under control.

She lives in fear the dog will return and is desperately raising funds to improve the enclosure’s security and pay the vet bills for ongoing treatment of the surviving joeys.

Anyone wishing to donate to the sanctuary or share information about the dog responsible can contact the sanctuary via Facebook.

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