‘She didn’t stand a chance’ – Peak District hunt kills Bakewell family’s beloved pet cat

A Peak District hunt has ‘apologised unreservedly’ and promised to review their procedures after a family’s beloved pet cat was killed by their dogs.

The High Peak Hunt, whose dogs are based in Bakewell, yesterday admitted their hounds had been responsible for the animal’s death.

The dogs were being exercised on Tuesday in the fields around their kennels when they unexpectedly chased after the two-year-old Spider, catching her underneath a car and fatally wounding her.

Owner Rebecca Bingham, who described Spider as a ‘real beauty’, said she ‘didn’t stand a chance’.

Two-year-old Spider was killed by a dog from the High Peak Hunt.

She said: “Before she had a chance to move, one of the dogs jumped up on the wall she was sat on on Crowhill Lane.

“She then dodged and hid underneath the car, but it crawled under after her, brought her out, clamped its jaws around her stomach and shook her like a rag doll,

“By the time we managed to get the dog to release her, she was gasping for air, and within a minute she had passed away.”

Rebecca added the dogs had been a ‘frequent problem’ in the area, but that she hadn’t managed to get anywhere by speaking to the riders.

A High Peak Hunt spokesperson said: “The hunt is aware of events that took place on Tuesday, December 29 while the hounds were being walked out in an area where they are routinely exercised without incident by the professional hunt staff.

“The hunt has been in contact with the cat owner and apologised unreservedly for the distress this has caused.

“Incidents of this nature involving hounds are incredibly rare due to the professionalism with which the hounds are handled in kennels and throughout their lives, however the hunt has taken this matter very seriously and is reviewing their procedures to prevent any recurrence.”

However, the Derby Hunt Saboteurs, who campaign against the fox hunting in the county, said the incident proved how dangerous the practice was.

A spokesperson said: "This incident shows the huntsman's lack of control over their hounds. If they weren't trained to kill this wouldn't happen.

“Time and time again we have seen this happen. It was only a few weeks ago the High Peak Harriers were filmed chasing a calf."

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.