THE life of a dog has been spared after it attacked a Cockapoo in a Dumbarton street – but its owner has been banned from keeping dogs for three years.

Emma Oliver had been served with a “dog control notice” from West Dunbartonshire Council just weeks before her pet Serbian defence dog, Kizer, carried out the attack near a property in Strathclyde Road on January 15.

Kizer repeatedly bit the other dog, known as Douglas, on the body and refused to let go – leaving Douglas injured and his owners fearing for their own safety.

But a sheriff decided not to issue an order for Kizer to be put down after a report from an independent assessor said the dog was not considered a threat to other animals or to the public – as long as it was properly controlled.

Oliver, 27, of Ashton View, appeared at the town’s sheriff court for sentencing on Friday after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing to a single charge under the Dangerous Dogs Act.

She had been served with the dog control notice on December 11, requiring her to restrain Kizer with a secure lead or muzzle because of its previous aggressive behaviour.

A not guilty plea was accepted to a charge of Kizer repeatedly biting and killing another dog, Max, on September 18, 2018, within the grounds of Langcraigs Nursing Home, on Gooseholm Road.

The Crown also accepted Oliver was not guilty of failing to have a muzzle or secure lead on Kizer on December 11 near the nursing home and Townend Road.

Defence lawyer Gordon Nicol told the court video footage shot by the Scottish SPCA showed Kizer not reacting badly when surrounded by other dogs under carefully supervised conditions.

Mr Nicol said of his client: “She has remained out of trouble over the last six years or so, probably because she has not been engaging in the use of illicit substances, which were affecting her mental health.

“She appears to have learned as a result of this case that if she is going to be allowed to keep a dog in the future, she would be required to take steps to ensure she is fit and able to do so.

“She does now appreciate only too well the consequences of her not being vigilant in the care of a dog.”

Sheriff Maxwell Hendry told Oliver: “I don’t blame the dog for this situation; I blame the owner.”

In addition to the three-year ban, Oliver was handed a community payback order which will see her supervised by social workers for 18 months.

She will also have to do 150 hours of unpaid community work by April 2020 as a punishment.