Burnham-On-Sea Coastguards were called to Brean Down for a second consecutive day on Tuesday (February 12th) following concerns for the welfare of a dog owner attempting to catch one of his two dogs off their leads.
On Monday a dog was feared to have been killed in a fall from Brean Down, and Coastguards were called back to Brean again on Tuesday afternoon shortly after 3pm.
A Burnham-On-Sea Coastguard spokesman said: “We were tasked to reports of an owner who was attempting to catch his dog that had become distracted by the local wildlife.”
“He had two dogs that were off their leashes and were very eager to explore everything they could.”
“We were tasked after reports came in from various sources that one of the dogs had been caught and was safe while the other was seen to be chasing and barking at the goats.”
“The goats, who are naturally sure-footed on such terrain, were able to easily avoid the dog and took refuge in their rocky overhang where they gather.”
He added: “The worry was that the owner, who was dashing after the dog, was either in danger of falling or risking his own safety should the dog fall, as we are only called to a risk to human life this was a clear indication that there were worries for the owners wellbeing.”
“As we arrived on scene and drove the vehicle to the top of Brean Down the radio burst into life, there was an update that the owner had managed to get his dog back onto a leash and was safe.”
“As we were already along by the Fort where he was said to be located we had a quick scout around for him but there was no sign.”
“One of our team members who had arrived from work was at the base of the Down and spotted him walking down the steps. Once he was close he attempted to speak to the man and let him know we were on scene and wanted to check he was OK, but when approached he was very angry and became verbally abusive while continuing onwards to his car without breaking stride.”
“We understand that it can be a stressful time. It goes without saying that we are here to help without judgement no matter the circumstances, so it is always a little disappointing when we encounter people who are so quick to act in this manner.”
“We are only concerned about people’s welfare and, when necessary, issue safety advice.”
“This chap was very lucky to walk away with both his dogs and no loss or injuries. It is so important to keep dogs on leads whilst on high ground, there are signs urging caution but ultimately it is the owners responsibility to ensure dogs are on leads where there is a danger of falling, plus dogs should be controlled and not chasing the goats or causing them worry.”
“There are miles of beautiful beach for dogs to run freely and safely. So always remember any high ground keep old ‘Rover’ on a lead, it could save your beloved four-legged family member’s life.”
“If anything does happen, please dial 999 immediately and ask for the Coastguards. Never put yourself at risk.”