Hey, guys... I'm in a bit of a pickle at the moment re: what to do about a situation I know about.
There is a family down the street (parents & two grown boys, maybe between 20 and 25) who owned an aggressive German Shepherd when my family moved here 12 years ago. That makes the dog at least that age or more. For years there have been rumours among the neighbours that these people were locking the GS under their BBQ, which has cabinet-like doors. My friends and I would walk past and hear muffled barking, too close to be coming from inside the house. It is also an outside dog.
Over the years, I've witnessed them walking this dog maybe 2 or 3 times a year, each time on a very tight check-chain because the dog lunges at people & dogs that go by. They may walk it more but I honestly don't know.
Anyway, maybe 3 or 4 years ago, they got a second dog, I believe in the hopes of calming the GS's aggro behaviour at people walking by. Big mistake. The dog in question is a male Staffordshire Bull Terrier who is EXTREMELY dog-aggressive. I don't walk by there often as my dogs are usually exercised on bush trails, but every time I go by the SBT is aggro.
It tries to grab dogs through their fence and if the GS so much as approaches the fence while he is there, the SBT grabs him by the throat and shakes him. The GS is much more meek now than it was years ago; he cowers in the corner the other dog gets this way. The SBT re-directs aggression to the GS, some times worse than others. Most times it is a snap and a pointed warning to stay away from the fence while he is there.
However, this evening, when I took my dogs by, the SBT was worse than I've ever seen it. Frothing at the mouth, baring teeth, snarling, the whole nine yards. I didn't see the GS; usually he is slinking around out of interest when he hears dogs go past, but he was standing off to the side. He appeared to be severely limping on one of his hindlegs, and I couldn't be 100% sure, but I think I saw that there were bite marks and scars. Obviously the SBT has done it because the dogs are practically never taken anywhere, and they made no effort to socialise the SBT that I have seen (our neighbours are all very social and talk, etc. They've been asked about whether they exercise the dogs before; answer was 'almost never').
Now my dilemma is this: do I lodge a report to the RSPCA? Can they even do anything? The GS is clearly in need of medical attention; he isn't a spring chicken anymore and the SBT is young, powerful and much fatter than him. I would barter he gets the majority of food put outside for them.
I don't know that Sydney RSPCA can really do anything, anyway in this case. The poor GS is just an old man now who is losing out to a younger male. (SBT is desexed, thank god. I think the GS, too.)
What are your thoughts, guys? I hate knowing that this dog is suffering just down the road.