Codie the dog set on fire by thugs still battling
A pet dog left severely injured after being doused with lighter fluid and set on fire is at a critical stage in her veterinary treatment.
Border collie Codie has received intensive round-the-clock care for her horrific injuries since she was attacked on Sunday morning by two teenagers.
The sadistic attack — which took place close to her owners’ home in Maghaberry, Co Antrim — was so extreme, Codie’s ribs and other joints were visible through her burnt flesh.
Everything possible is being done by vet Ian Moore and his team based in Moira, Co Down, to aid the three-year-old dog’s recovery, but her owner Martin Agnew has been told her condition is going to get worse before it gets better.
Mr Agnew said the vets are trying to manage his family’s expectations.
“In the days to come, when the dead flesh falls away on her legs and back, we will know the full extent of her burns,” he said.
“She’s itchy and the vet doesn’t want her to touch the wounds, so she’s got a cone on. The vet doesn’t want to say she is OK if she’s not going to be OK, so he is keeping our hopes down.
“If she pulls through this next stage her injuries will take weeks and months to heal.”
Codie hasn’t been able to eat much, but enjoyed a sausage on Tuesday and rashers of bacon yesterday.
“She loved the bacon,” Martin said.
“She was eating it from our hands. It was good to see.”
Martin and Natalie Agnew’s sons Justin (10) and Jake (6) were reunited with Codie yesterday for the first time since the attack.
“They have missed her,” Martin said. “We’ve told them there are bad people in the world and tried to explain what is happening. That will be their last visit for a while.”
Mr Agnew also said his family has been overwhelmed by messages of support from all over Northern Ireland and beyond.
The Justice for Cody (sic) Facebook page now has more than 33,000 supporters, and the donation page set up by 21-year-old Tara Purdy from Banbridge has raised over £2,300 for vet bills.
Police are keen to speak to two teenagers spotted on Trummery Lane, close to the local quarry, at around 10am on Sunday. They may have been socialising in the Maghaberry area on Saturday, possibly at a house party.
The first is described as being around 5ft 9ins tall, of thin build, with broad shoulders, dark hair and a faint moustache.
He was wearing a grey top, possibly a hoodie, and similar coloured tracksuit bottoms.
He is also described as having an aggressive demeanour and was carrying a bottle of Buckfast.
The second is of similar height and build and was carrying a white plastic bag.
Anyone with information can contact the PSNI on 0845 600 8000 or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.