A woman’s best friend and depression support animal was left bloodied, broken and scared after being mauled by an off-leash dog in Albury.
Six-year-old Georgie is well known around the Border, accompanying owner Erika Grimes everywhere from work to the shops – even sitting in the first pew every Sunday at St Matthew’s for mass.
Ms Grimes said she got Georgie as a companion animal when a redundancy left her with crippling depression.
“Georgie loves sunshine and rolling in the grass, her favourite thing in the world is walks,” she said.
“She’s what keeps me safe and happy.
“She’s my whole world, she’s been my companion dog for six years, it was horrible.
“It was heartless.”
We were abandoned. I was just sitting there with Georgie in my lap as she bled.Erika Grimes
It remains unclear whether Georgie will be able to walk on four legs, or give Ms Grimes her special hugs ever again, with one of her legs at risk of amputation.
Two weeks ago Ms Grimes said she was left alone holding a terrified and bleeding Georgie after a Staffordshire bull terrier mauled her near the corner of Thurgoona and Stanley streets.
Ms Grimes said she was helpless when her phone died and the staffy’s owner took his dog and left the scene.
“We were abandoned,” she said.
“She’s my family, she’s the only baby I’m going to have. She’s such a big part of my life.
“I didn’t know how I was going to get help.
“I was just sitting there with Georgie in my lap as she bled.”
Ms Grimes was saved when a passerby saw the scene and took Georgie to the vet.
She said the staffy owner’s actions were irresponsible.
“The owner said they were just going to take the staffy home and come back, but they just left,” she said.
“If Georgie wasn’t a medium sized dog, if she was smaller, she would be dead – it’s like a hit and run – if it was an older person or a child the dog would have gone for them.”
Since the attack Georgie has undergone surgery and had work to tackle a flesh-eating bacteria passed from the staffy.
Ms Grimes said she works part-time at an art gallery, with Georgie by her side, but doesn’t know how she will cope with $5000 in veterinary bills.
“It’s been really, really tough, I’ve had great people supporting me but there’s a long way to go,” she said.
Donations can be made at Save Georgie’s leg on gofundme, and a fundraiser will be held at St Matthew’s church on July 29.