A popular puppy that welcomed guests at the new Adelaide Oval hotel has been mauled to death just weeks after the venue’s long-awaited opening.
- Charli the puppy was killed by another dog during an evening walk
- The puppy featured in the hotel’s official opening last month
- Hotel staff say the loss is “heartbreaking”
Charli, a 20-week-old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, featured prominently during the hotel’s official opening celebrations last month.
The hotel said Charli was attacked by another dog while on a walk in a suburban area on Wednesday evening.
“It is with heavy hearts that we have to advise that we have said goodbye to Charli, our beautiful Oval Hotel puppy, who passed away,” a post on the hotel’s Facebook page said.
“To lose her in such a way is heartbreaking. We will miss her so much.”
Members of the public expressed sympathy and support in comments on social media.
The hotel said the incident had been reported to the local council but declined to say where the attack occurred or give other details.
The Adelaide Oval hotel officially opened on September 25, but the project has been beset by controversy and financial concerns.
Last month, an SA Auditor-General’s report found the Adelaide Oval Stadium Management Authority (SMA) had lost significant income due to the coronavirus pandemic.
A $42 million taxpayer-funded loan was provided to the authority to build the 138-room hotel at the oval.
Earlier this month, two cyclists were reportedly attacked by a pack of five dogs at Hallett Cove.
In May, another dog was captured on CCTV attacking a man outside a laundromat on Brighton Road in Adelaide.
Canine behaviour expert Celina Rebola said, despite those incidents, it was relatively rare for dogs to attack other dogs.
But she said some dogs could do more damage if they became violent, simply because of their physical size and strength.
Ms Rebola, a PhD student at Flinders University, said dogs that became violent tended to be poorly socialised or may be reacting to the agitation of their owner.
“I wouldn’t call it common relative to the number of interactions between dogs … very few would result in a mauling,” she said.
She added that owners are held responsible for their dog’s behaviour.