The family of a tiny dog whose jaw was broken in three places when it was attacked by a much larger dog are warning other owners and even parents to be vigilant.

Masie, a six-year-old Shih Tzu, is recovering from her ordeal, but is still not “out of the woods” according to Rachel McCallion, of Chawston Close, in Eaton Socon.

The dog belongs to Rachel's mum, Angela, but it was Rachel's auntie, Lea Biddle, who was walking Masie in the Little End Road area of Eaton Socon on January 8, at about 6.20pm, when the attack happened.

“My auntie was on her way back home, when the dog, an Alsatian, which was off its lead, ran across the road and grabbed Masie by the head and started shaking her,” explained Rachel.

“My auntie tried to pull the dog off and when the owners came over, a man and a woman, they grabbed their dog and just said 'she's fine' and walked off. My auntie picked Masie up and brought her home and it was then she noticed her mouth

was bleeding and she called an emergency vet.”

Masie was taken to Cromwell Vets, in Huntingdon, and sedated as she was showing signs of distress. A set of X-rays revealed her jaw was broken in three places and she was taken to another vets in Hatfield on Monday morning for specialist treatment. Masie's jaw was pinned, which is a delicate operation for such a tiny dog.

Fully grown adult Shih Tzus, which are referred to as a toy dog breed, weigh between 10-19 pounds, so the jaw area is tiny.

The family have since found out that Masie will need a second operation in a few month's time as two of her teeth were damaged during the attack and it is not possible to remove them until the jaw has healed.

Masie is recovering at home and is wearing a collar to protect the jaw, and being fed water through a syringe. The family has been told to keep Masie in a cage to prevent her from hurting herself or knocking the pins out.

“We keep thinking this could just as easily have been a child walking down the path,” said Rachel.

“Masie is still not out of the woods and if this had been my mum's other dog, Monty, who is older, he may not have survived. Masie is in a lot of pain and is dosed up on pain killers. It is heartbreaking to see her like this. This was a big dog and it should

have been on a lead.

“We have received lots of nice messages on Facebook from people wishing Masie well and it has been lovely to see the support.”

The family has contacted Cambridgeshire police about the incident, but say they were told police do not respond to reports of dogs attacking other dogs.