A Stanley Park swan was attacked so viciously by a dog that it 'looked like its wings were missing'.
A member of the public spotted the male swan in distress in the Blackpool park and contacted the RSPCA, as it appeared the bird’s wings were missing.
Animal collection officer Kelly Nix attended the scene and found the swan with horrific injuries to both wings which made him appear wingless.
It is believed the injuries were inflicted in an attack before 7.45am on Saturday, September 14.
The swan, nicknamed Sean, was captured and taken to Norcross Vets, on Norcross Lane, for emergency treatment.
According to the RSPCA, vets said the wounds on both wings were consistent with being bitten by a dog.
"Fortunately there were no fractures and staff were able to clean the wounds and gave the swan pain relief and antibiotics," a charity spokesman said.
"He responded well to treatment and is now in the care of wildlife centre but will have to spend months there to allow his feathers to grow back before he can be released back into the wild."
Kelly said Sean was lucky to survive the horrific injuries and is now urging dog owners to be responsible and keep their pets on leads around wildlife.
She said: “The injuries were horrific and I can see why the person who reported it to us thought both wings were missing - not only did he have gaping holes in his wings but most of his feathers had gone.
“It was lucky he was spotted when he was as if he was left in this state he would have suffered even more and he with no wing movement he would be unable to fly or protect himself from predators so would not have lasted long in this state.
“He must have also been in a lot of pain.
“But his terrible incident could have been avoided had the dog owner been responsible and kept their pet on a lead.
“We ask that dog owners be aware that there may be wild animals present in the area when walking their dog and to keep their dog under control at all times.
“This swan was very lucky to survive - sadly we are called to cases when swans have been killed in dog attacks.”
Dog owners have a legal responsibility under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 to keep their dog under control in a public place.
All wild birds, including swans, are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and it is an offence to intentionally kill, injure or take them except under licence. The maximum penalty, if found guilty, is six months in prison and/or an unlimited fine.