A BELOVED little dog was ripped to pieces by another dog in front of her horrified owner and two small children.

Anne Fotheringham, 56, watched as her bichon frize had her stomach torn open by the snarling dog as she walked with a friend and her youngsters in Plumberow Mount, Hockley, on Tuesday afternoon.

Ten-year-old Sophie died on Tuesday morning following surgery on the terrible wounds inflicted by the Bulgarian mountain dog who had been in the mount with a teenage boy. 

Mrs Fotheringham and her friend Jodie Maynard desperately tried to fight off the attack dog, while protecting Miss Maynard’s children, ten-month-old Albie and four-year-old Georgia.

Devastated Mrs Fotheringham of Beckney Avenue, Hockley, “Before we could do anything his dog picked Sophie up and pulled her apart.

“She was ripped to pieces in front of the children. It was all over in seconds.

“There was nothing we could do. “We rushed her to a vet but she was so badly injured.”

The dog who attacked Sophie has since been destroyed by its owner.

An Essex Police spokesman said: “Police were called and when officers arrived the victim’s dog had been taken to a nearby vets. We identified the owner of the other dog which has been destroyed.

“Legislation under the Dangerous Dogs Act has been examined by officers and there will be no further police action.

“The victim was advised about further action she could take through the civil courts.”