A bighearted celebrity couple living in Majorca who took pity on a huge Canary Mastiff which was due to be put down at an animal shelter have paid for their kindness after it tore apart their beloved pet Yorkshire Terrier.
Caro Robens, 40, and her husband Andreas, 53, became famous in Germany after taking part in the VOX TV series about expats that move abroad called “Goodbye Germany”. The pair opened up the successful local businesses the “Iron Gym” and the “Iron DEner” on the island in Palma de Majorca where they lived with their beloved Yorkshire Terrier “Zwerg”, which means dwarf in German.
They had taken pity on the much larger dog named Bulli after hearing that he had only three months to find a home before being put to sleep. But there were warning signs that it would not work out after he attacked Zwerg almost as soon as he moved in with them in October last year, breaking two ribs.
Experts warn that the Canary Mastiff, which is the animal symbol of Gran Canaria, is difficult to keep and requires early obedience training and socialisation. It is famed for having an aggressive attitude towards other dogs and the breed are suspicious of strangers which has meant they are prized for dog fighting.
It was this breed that killed lacrosse player Diane Whipple in 2001 when she walked into her apartment in San Francisco, and they killed again in Ireland in 2017 when three canary mastiffs that were owned by the victims son attacked her.
In the incident in the Canary Islands the German couple decided to forgive Bulli his first attack on Zwerg, putting it down to a troubled former owner and hoping that they could train him to put the aggression into the past.
But instead he struck again, grabbing the smaller dog and this time injuring the Yorkshire Terrier so badly that he died.
The heartbroken Caro said she regretted “having met the mastiff at all” and her partner Andreas agreed saying: “I simply shouldn’t have taken this dog”.
The 53-year-old added that the largest of their beloved Yorkshire terrier was one of the lowest points in their lives.
They have handed Bulli back to the shelter, and are now trying to come to terms with the loss of their faithful six year old companion.
In an Instagram posting Caro however defended Bulli against critics saying: “We are overwhelmed by all the very kind comments from people about our loss and we intend to make personal replies to everybody. However there are so many that we won’t manage it all once.
“But I’d also like to say to all the wicked people that we are really shocked about your comments and want to say that it’s people like you that were responsible for raising Bulli and making him what he is. He is not the beast, he’s just an animal. You are the real beasts.”
The Perro de Presa Canario, also known as the Canary Mastiff, is a rare large Molosser-type dog breed originally bred for working livestock.
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