Granddaughter Lilli Sharman, five, with Christine Jackson and border kelpie Obi. Photo: John Gass / Tweed Daily News
Granddaughter Lilli Sharman, five, with Christine Jackson and border kelpie Obi. Photo: John Gass / Tweed Daily News John Gass

‘Beautiful Maddie’ killed

A SPATE of wild dog attacks, including one where a family pet was mauled to death, has prompted biosecurity authorities to ramp up wild dog control on the Tweed.

The council has warned residents to stay out of all cycleways and beaches from Cudgen Creek and Kingscliff to south Casuarina following a lethal attack on nine-year-old border collie Madison.

She was killed last Saturday morning, only 100m from Casuarina's popular exercise trail.

Owners Christine and Arthur Jackson raised the alarm over the attack with the council and National Parks and Wildlife Service, believing a small child could have just as easily fallen prey to the dogs.

It happened about 6am when Mr Jackson was walking home from the beach with dogs Maddie and Obi off-leash on the cycleway, adjacent to the beach.

The dogs bolted ahead, while a passer-by asked Mr Jackson if he'd seen a dingo.

A retired grazier, Mr Jackson was perplexed by the question, because he thought Casuarina to be "developed".

"Then I saw the dingo," he said.

"It stuck its head out of the thick scrub.

"It disappeared and I didn't know where Maddie was. I assumed she was on the path.

"And the next thing I heard a dog yelping and I put two and two together."

Mr Jackson ran into the bush, calling for Maddie, and only 100m from the path he found her clenched in the jaws of a wild dog.

Armed with a stick, the 74-year-old approached the animal mauling on Maddie's lifeless body.

"The dog was lean with a distinctive dingo colouring," Mr Jackson said.

"It looked like it had been living off its wits in the bush. It didn't even bolt. He saw me and just trotted off."

Mr Jackson and his wife Christine, 52, rushed Maddie to a vet.

"By the time we got Maddie there we had discovered her anus had actually been ripped out," Christine said.

"She was so severely savaged by this wild dog, we had to have her put down. It was just devastating and frightening."

The couple has sought counselling for the trauma and shared their story to warn others about the danger to public safety and to urge the council and NPWS to act fast.

Recently a 72-year-old grandmother was attacked by three wild dogs on Casuarina beach.

"When dogs are reacting like this to human life and they're coming into public areas, something has to be done," Mrs Jackson said.

"We're going to end up with a kid mauled unless something is done and very quickly."

"Fraser Island has had problems with that and dingos actually attacked children, so it's logical that they will be dangerous to small children," Mr Jackson added.

Residents are warned Salt and Casuarina beaches and cycleways are still of limits while biosecurity officers get wild dog numbers under control.

Updates on the operation here.

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