A HAMPSHIRE woman was left devastated after a rogue dog mauled her cat to death and bit her partner.

Bryony Muse, who is 19 weeks pregnant, was in her home in Swaythling when she heard her pet "crying and screeching".

The 23-year-old ran out into her garden to find her beloved three-year-old cat Lulu being mauled by a Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

The female dog had locked its jaw on the cat's stomach and refused to let go.

"Being pregnant, I was thinking that I needed to protect my baby, but that was my cat.

"I ended up on my hands and knees trying to pull the dog off of my cat. It was really traumatising."

Upon hearing Bryony's screams for help, her partner Nicholas Houghton and neighbours tried to get the dog away – resulting in the dog turning on Mr Houghton, before neighbours captured it in a cage.

Bryony then rushed her pet to Beech House Veterinary Centre, in West End.

"Lulu was panting and crying, I wrapped her up and just held her but she wasn't in a good way. When we took her to the vets they said the injuries sustained meant she wouldn't survive an operation and they put her down."

Bryony and her family then called the dog's owner, who she described as "irresponsible" and "uninterested".

The Echo contacted the dog's owner, Candy Gatehouse, who explained that she was visiting a friends house one road away from Miss Muse's house on Carnation Road, when the dog named Molly escaped by jumping over a gate.

She said: "It is really terrible. I am devastated. I thought it might have just been a misunderstanding.

"My partner and my son brought the dog online six months ago and just turned up with it."

The 32-year-old explained that "the dog pulls her over when she spots a cat but has never bitten a person before."

"It is sad and disgusting to hear that this has happened and I am going to speak to animal welfare about how to look after it," said Miss Gatehouse.

A spokesperson for Hampshire Constabulary said: "The call came in to police during a period of very high demand in the Southampton area, and as a result officers were unable to deploy right away. Members of the public at the scene managed to secure the dog in a cage.

"Staff in the control room made a number of attempts to contact external agencies but there was no-one available to house the animal.

"We have spoken with the owner of the dog, and contacted the dog warden who visited the owner on Tuesday. The dog is now back with its owner and investigations into the circumstances are still on-going."