A five-year-old Saluki called Zach was left with a serious leg injury after being hit by a car before the eyes of his owner – who then promptly left him behind.
RSPCA London veterinary director Caroline Allen said, “Poor Zach was being used for some sort of hunting when he was injured. Salukis and lurcher types are often used for illegal blood sports such as hare coursing and locals tell us he was being used to chase rabbits and hares across the fields.”
Zach was chasing something in Fambridge Road, Maldon in Essex, on 16 August – when he ran in front of an upcoming vehicle.
“Unfortunately, Zach seems to have chased something into the road where he was hit – according to witnesses – by a car travelling at around 50mph,” Caroline says. “He suffered severe leg injuries and his owners left the scene and simply left him for dead. Thankfully, some kind members of the public helped him and contacted us right away so we were able to get him the veterinary attention he needed.”
Police were also called to the scene after the driver of the car failed to stop following the accident. RSPCA officers rushed Zach’s to the charity’s Harmsworth Animal Hospital, in north London. Zach had a broken leg as well as a deep open found. The fracture is being treated as it is hoping that surgery will allow the vets to save his leg.
“Poor Zach was absolutely terrified and must have been in so much pain,” Caroline added. “It’s despicable that his owners could see him hurt so seriously in this accident and simply drive away and leave him there in agony.
“We’d like to say a huge thank you to the lovely people who rushed to help him and stayed with him until we could collect him.”
Once Zach has recovered from his injury, he’ll be moved to one of the RSPCA rehoming centres to find his forever home.
Anyone who believes illegal activities such as hare coursing are taking place in their village or town should contact the RSPCA’s 24-hour cruelty line on 0300 1234 999. The charity’s Special Operations Unit routinely investigate illegal blood sports, such as hare coursing, as well as serious organised animal crimes.
Images by RSPCA.