Guard dog dies after being shot

A GUARD dog has died after being shot in the face by a gunman in an attempted burglary on a lorry yard.

Annie Davidson

A GUARD dog has died after being shot in the face by a gunman in an attempted burglary on a lorry yard.

Max, an 18-month-old German Shepherd, was a familiar sight at Colchester General Repairs at the Pertwee Complex at Hythe Quay and was regularly fed treats by locals.

The much-loved family pet was also used as a guard dog for the premises which his owner Paul Horwood has been running for ten years.

But on Sunday night the guard dog was horribly injured after being shot in the face by the gunman who apparently called him by name before opening fire.

Devastated Mr Horwood was called to the premises by nearby residents shortly afterwards and found the injured animal under a mobile crane where he had crawled after being shot.

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He wrapped Max, who was still conscious, in a sheet and alerted Vets Now, an emergency veterinary service in Highwoods, Colchester.

Despite their efforts it was decided that Max, who had lost part of his jaw and an eye, was too badly injured to survive and he was put down at 2am yesterday.

An emotional Mr Horwood said yesterday that he wished his pet could have died instantly rather than suffering before he was put to sleep.

He said Max had been “very brave” at the vets and did not whine once as they tried to treat him.

He added: “Although by night Max was a guard dog during the day he was as soft as lights and didn't have a nasty bone in his body.

“I got him when he was five-weeks-old, I just fell in love with him, he was a pet more than a guard dog.

“Everybody locally knew him and often came across to feed him treats.

“We will really miss him.”

He added there were no words to describe how he felt about the gunman.

Essex Police said witnesses had reported seeing a man running from the premises into Ventura Drive and described him as white, with long hair, wearing a blue hat, a long, dark jacket and jeans.

There was a Mitsubishi Shogun, possibly green, which was parked nearby which police said may or may not be linked to the investigation.

They appealed for the owner to come forward so he or she could be eliminated from the investigation.

Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to ring Colchester police on 0300 333 4444 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111

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