Belfast Telegraph

Dog owners warned over cliff walks after Portrush tragedy

The Coastguard has warned dog owners to keep their pets on a lead on cliff paths after one fell to its death near Portrush. (Niall Carson/PA)
The Coastguard has warned dog owners to keep their pets on a lead on cliff paths after one fell to its death near Portrush. (Niall Carson/PA)
Allan Preston

By Allan Preston

The Coastguard has warned dog owners to keep their pets on a lead on cliff paths after one fell to its death near Portrush.

Coleraine Coastguard was tasked at around noon on Sunday after multiple 999 calls reported that a boxer dog had fallen off a cliff at Magheracross Car Park in Dunluce.

Concerns were also raised that one of the owners had climbed over the rocks at the car park to reach the injured animal.

The dog died of its injuries despite a major rescue effort.

A post on the Coleraine Coastguard's Facebook page said: "Team members from Coleraine managed to reach the injured animal and to ensure that the owner was safe. The boxer was gently recovered to the cliff top but, sadly, was pronounced dead on arrival at the vet's."

The message added: "This unfortunate incident underlines the very important message that dogs should always be kept on a lead when being walked on cliff tops. If your pet does happen to fall from a cliff, please do not place yourself in danger: instead, dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard. We will do the rest."

In October, another dog fell 20ft from a cliff face on the north coast but survived. Rhea, a Sheltie, had been walking on a cliff top at Downhill Strand near Mussenden Temple and fell 20ft on to a ledge.

Her owner Maria called 999 and the Coastguard rescued the animal by abseiling down the cliff face.

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