Hervey Bay's Aubrey McMullen with his bird's cage. His bird, named Ben, was killed during a dog attack.
Hervey Bay's Aubrey McMullen with his bird's cage. His bird, named Ben, was killed during a dog attack. Carlie Walker

SHOCKING: Bay man injured, pet killed, in dog attack

A HERVEY Bay man has told of the frightening moment two dogs burst into his home, leaving him with injuries and killing his pet bird.

Aubrey McMullen, 89, was sitting with his daughter at his home in Scarness on Friday when the incident happened.

Mr McMullen told his daughter to leave the door open when she arrived to let some air through the house.

Moments later the two dogs, a German shepherd and a staffordshire terrier, ran through the door and jumped on the elderly man, who is three weeks away from turning 90.

He was knocked to the ground and the German shepherd jumped on his face, scratching his ear.

In the aftermath of the attack, Mr McMullen noticed his bird, which had been sitting on his shoulder, was lying lifeless on the floor.

Aubrey McMullen with a photo of his beloved bird, Ben.
Aubrey McMullen with a photo of his beloved bird, Ben. Carlie Walker

He raced Ben, his beloved pet, to the vet, but it was too late.

Mr McMullen is still unsure if Ben was injured by the dogs or if he died of fright.

He had owned the parrot for eight years and dearly loved his pet, whose companionship had become especially important since his wife died 15 months ago.

"He's been my company since my wife passed away," Mr McMullen said.

"He was such a comic."

During the vet visit, Mr McMullen noticed several drops of blood on his foot.

Realising it was coming from his ear, his daughter took him to a doctor's clinic and then to Hervey Bay Hospital.

"I put my hand up to my ear and it was covered in blood."

He was examined and a laceration was found inside his ear where the dog had scratched him.

"It's not a bite," Mr McMullen said.

"His paw must have slipped inside."

Mr McMullen spent the night in hospital, then had to return home to a home that now feels empty with the loss of his feathered friend.

He now has to put drops containing antibiotics in his ear to fend of infection, which could be particularly harmful given his age.

Mr McMullen said the incident had been a shock to the system.

He reported the dogs to the Fraser Coast Regional Council, but so far, despite a search of the neighbourhood by compliance officers, the animals are yet to be found.

Mr McMullen wanted to warn others of the dogs, especially those who had children.

He said he was concerned the dogs could be dangerous, given they knocked him to the ground, but he says he doesn't blame them for the attack.

"It's up to the owners to keep their dogs under control," he said.

The council is investigating the incident and staff have looked in on Mr McMullen to check on his welfare after he was released from hospital.

"Council Animal Management Officers have undertaken patrols and a door knock of houses in the area in an effort to locate the dogs," Executive Manager Regulatory Services Megan Savill said.

"If anyone has any information about the incident or the staffy or German shepherd involved, can contact the Council's Regulatory Services section on 1300 79 49 29.

 "This incident highlights the need for dog owners to be responsible and ensure that their fences and yards are adequate to ensure their pets cannot wander the streets."


To help residents, Council has produced a Responsible Pet Ownership flyer which is available on its website www.frasercoast.qld.gov.au/fact-sheets.

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