A dog walker needed hospital treatment after being bitten on the leg as he tried to stop his puppy being attacked by two Staffies.
Matt Payne was walking in Apedale Country Park with his wife Larne and 12-week-old labradoodle Dora when two loose Staffordshire bull terriers charged at them.
The 34-year-old managed to fend off one of the Staffies before the second one tried to get at Dora before sinking its teeth into his thigh.
The attack only stopped when Matt hit out at the dog.
To his shock, the owners – two men and a woman – walked off in the direction of Knutton following the incident, which happened at around 6pm last Tuesday (August 18).
Now Matt, from Newcastle, is urging other dog walkers to be extra cautious.
He said: “Me and the wife decided to take Dora, our 12-week-old labradoodle to Apedale Park for a walk in the sun. Five minutes in and it turned to a nightmare.
“We spotted two black and white Staffordshire bull terriers off the lead up ahead and thought nothing of it, then all of a sudden one was heading for Dora, charging at her.
“Luckily I managed to pull her out of the way and grab the dog to pull it away.
“My wife managed to pick Dora up from the bushes where she had landed as I pulled her out of the way.
“As I screamed to the owners about grabbing their dog the other dog charged towards growling and tried to jump to get her.
“I stood between them and it decided to have me instead. I was able to hit it and get it off. I’m just glad it was me and not Dora
“The owners just grabbed their dogs and walked off like nothing had happened. We couldn’t believe what had happened. I didn’t even get much chance to see them.”
Matt has since reported the incident to the police.
He added: “It bit my upper right thigh. I was very lucky only the top teeth went in or think I could have had a big chunk missing.
“I spent a few hours at the hospital to get checked and I’m now on antibiotics. It took a few days for all the bruising to come up.
“Your dog may be friendly and never shows aggression but it only takes a second for them to change.
“I just want people to be aware when out walking and check what else is around you and. If there are any dogs running off the lead be extra cautious.”
Police are now appealing for witnesses.
A Staffordshire Police spokesman said: “Police were called at 6.50pm on August 18 to a report of a dog attack at Apedale Country Park.
“It was reported that two Staffordshire Bull Terriers – being walked off the lead by two men and a woman – tried to attack a puppy and caused injury to a man who separated the dogs. He suffered a bite wound to his leg.”
Any witnesses or anyone with information can contact 101, or report online quoting incident number 408 of August 18.