Two stray Pitbull-cross dogs caused panic on Praia do Vidal in Quarteira on Wednesday afternoon (July 29) after they attacked beachgoers, leaving one man with “serious injuries”.
The dogs are now “under quarantine” at Loulé’s municipal kennels where vet Paulo Pina has confirmed they do not have mandatory electronic tags and so cannot be traced to any owner/s.
The case has been reported to GNR police and is in the hands of the Public Prosecutor’s Office, which is now trying to discover where the animals, thought to be “mother and son”, originated.
According to Público, they were first seen “running playfully” along the beach late on Wednesday afternoon.
Things then went pear-shaped when one of the dogs pulled on the bikini pants of a young woman standing near the shoreline.
Beachgoers laughed at first, said an eyewitness, “but quickly realised the dog could start causing real harm”.
It was 57-year-old Luís Pederneira who then discovered how much harm.
After seeing the dog rip a toy shovel out of his son’s hand, leaving the child with “minor injuries”, the man set off after the animal, which by then was closing in on another child playing with a kite.
The dog then turned its attention on to the child’s mother, but did not attack as Pederneira began luring it away with his son’s shovel.
“Unfortunately, I fell while I tried to run away and the dog attacked me on the ground,” he explained to Público afterwards.
Beachgoers ran to Pederneira’s aid and managed to frighten the dogs into decamping.
Pederneira was initially treated by a Spanish doctor and Portuguese nurse who were both on the beach at the time. He was then taken to Loulé’s health centre, where he was treated for “deep wounds” to his right leg and nasty scratches on his left leg.
GNR police were dispatched to catch the dogs which they managed to do with the help of beachgoers after a kilometre-long chase.
The dogs will now remain at Loulé kennels as the search for who may have left them running wild continues.