A woman has told of the terrifying moment her pet dog was savaged by a German Shepherd as she walked in a park.

Asia Marszalec was walking Sasha, a mixed breed terrier in South Park, Darlington, when the horrific incident happened.

Ms Marszalec, 56, who lives in the town, said the ordeal began near the former mini golf area at 11.30am on Friday March 17.

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The Northern Echo: Sasha pictured with owners Asia Marszalec and Gareth Rees Sasha pictured with owners Asia Marszalec and Gareth Rees (Image: Northern Echo)

She said: “A woman unleashed the dog and it started to run straight towards us immediately.

“I put Sasha on the lead and she was walking along but the dog started to bite her.

“I screamed at the lady to take her dog away but she was maybe 100 or 200 metres away from me.”

Ms Marszalec said the woman was walking slowly over so, in a panic, she called the police.

She said: “The dog was being bitten all of this time and she was crying.

“She got out of the collar and ran to the water to escape but the dog ran after her.

“It was awful. The lady but could not handle the dog.

“It started to bite Sasha again. He was clearly hurting her. It went on three to five minutes. He was trying to kill her. She was bleeding.”

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Ms Marszalec said police attended and took the owner’s details while Sasha was taken to Vets for Pets in Darlington where she had 63 stitches for her wounds.

The Northern Echo: Sasha suffered extensive injuries Sasha suffered extensive injuries (Image: Contributor)

The Northern Echo: The other dog launched a viscous attack and drew blood The other dog launched a viscous attack and drew blood (Image: Contributor)

The Northern Echo: He injuries need ongoing treatment He injuries need ongoing treatment (Image: Contributor)

The attack has left the dog, who was rescued from the streets of Poland, and her owners, deeply traumatised.

It is understood the owner has refused to pay for Sasha’s treatment and the German Shepherd has now been put down.

Ms Marszalec, who is also originally from Poland, lives with Gareth Rees, 40, a mental health support worker.

He said the injuries around Sasha’s abdomen and lower back and tail are so severe muscle is visible and have left her in a lot of pain.

The vet bill for the has already come to £1,000 but is expected to be far higher and, as the family does not have pet insurance, they have started an online fundraiser to save their dog.

The Northern Echo: Sasha, a much-loved family pet, before the attack Sasha, a much-loved family pet, before the attack (Image: Contributor)

Mr Rees, who has two children, Naomi, nine, and seven-year-old Gabi, said: “I thought we were going to have to put her to sleep.

“The idea for the fundraiser came one of the nurses at the vets.

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"I was in bits when it happened but since the fundraising kicked off we have received lot of messages of support and feel lot more positive. She is really loved by everyone.

“It must have transferred to Sasha because this weekend, more than a week after it happened, she started wagging her tail again.”

To support the appeal for Sasha click here