A MAN whose dog bit a man in an unprovoked attack, causing him serious leg wounds, has been jailed for 16 months.

John Sykes, 62, of Scholey Road, Brighouse, was walking his dog, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier called Bertie when it attacked the man, the third time it had attacked a stranger in two years.

Sykes was walking Bertie in Bowling Alley Terrace, Brighouse, with his partner, who was also walking her cat, with both animals on leads, on April 8, 2018.

The victim walked past the couple and made a “light-hearted comment” about the cat being on a lead, prosecutor Martin Robertshaw said.

He said: “As he walked past, the dog growled and bit him twice on the legs.

“The victim was wearing shorts and his skin was exposed. He had puncture holes on both legs which started bleeding instantly.

“Sykes’ partner told him to take the dog home, and stayed with the victim, apologising and tending to his injuries.”

The victim went to hospital, where he was treated. One wound was an inch long and so deep, some tissue was hanging out, and could not be stitched due to risk of infection.

The active 52-year-old had to miss a week of work and has been left with permanent scarring and his legs get swollen after prolonged exercise.

A victim impact statement read to the court said the victim is now "uneasy around dogs, would not consider approaching unknown dogs, and would make every effort to avoid going near a dog".

He also said the incident has had an effect on his partner too, who works with dogs, and has also affected his social life.

The court heard how this was the third time Bertie had attacked an innocent person. In March 2016, he ran out of the house and bit a neighbour in the street, locking his jaws on her leg, and had to be restrained.

A month before the last attack, the dog also bit a 16-year-old girl inside Sykes’ house.

After the first attack, a community resolution order was placed on Bertie requiring him to wear a muzzle in public.

In mitigation the court was told Sykes has no previous convictions and is of good character. He had pleaded guilty to one count of being in charge of a dog dangerously out of control and causing injury.

In sentencing, Judge Jonathan Rose said: “It’s often said there are no bad dogs, only bad owners, and this court concludes in this case you are a bad owner.

“Bad in the sense of your inability to exercise sufficient control of a dog I find to be dangerous. This is the third occasion this dog has bitten.

“Knowing the dog had bitten before, I do not accept you were unaware it had to be muzzled.

“At 62 you should have enough life experience for it to be pertinently obvious this dog posed a danger to the public.

“You and you alone are responsible for the victim’s injuries.

“This was a repeated attack with ongoing effects for the victim.”

Judge Rose also ordered “with regret and reluctance” for the dog to be destroyed.