Happy ending for seized dog Darla

Maddison, Jenny, Darla and Lola Faith welcoming their pet home.
Maddison, Jenny, Darla and Lola Faith welcoming their pet home.

A family dog which was seized by police for being a banned breed has been saved from death row.

Darla the Shar-Pei Staff cross has been in police kennels since July 16 and her owner Jenny Armer from Lancaster launched a campaign to raise money to fight for Darla’s life in court, as well as a petition to help save Darla.

Darla the dog with Maddison.

Darla the dog with Maddison.

Darla was returned home last Thursday, much to the delight of Jenny and her five children.

Jenny, of Norfolk Street, Lancaster, said: “It’s just brilliant, I couldn’t believe it. I cried and I was in shock. For them to ring and say Darla was found to be a Staff cross Shar-pei, I just felt relieved.

“It felt like a lifetime without her. My seven-year-old daughter Maddison, who is autistic and has a special bond with Darla, was screaming all afternoon. It’s like she has never been gone.

“The police have to do their job following the law but the law is just ridiculous, it’s judging a dog just on the look of a particular breed. I would never wish for anyone to go through what we did, so we just want to help other families and stop this law.

“Words will never be able to describe how grateful I am for the support from friends, family, Deed not Breed and The Lancaster Guardian and The Visitor, it has been absolutely amazing! Thank you so much to every single person who has helped us through this past 18 days of hell.”

Police have confirmed that Darla is not a banned breed.

They executed a warrant in Norfolk Street last month.

Officers attended following reports a dog inside the property was a banned breed.

As is force policy when dealing with a suspected banned breed, the dog was removed in order for it to be assessed.

Following an independent assessment it was established the dog is not banned.

Sgt Sue Bushell, of Lancashire Police’s Dogs Unit, said: “In any incident where officers deal with a potential prohibited dog, safeguarding individuals and protection of the public is our priority.

“There are many occasions where dogs seized under the Dangerous Dogs Act are returned to their owners.”