Becca Hill, from Paignton in Devon, is desperately searching for Gizmo after the seagull flew off with the yelping pet in its beak
A distraught dog owner has launched an urgent search for her chihuahua after he was snatched by a seagull.
Four-year-old Gizmo was playing in the back garden of Becca Hill’s house in Paignton, Devon when it was taken.
The seagull swooped down and flew away with the small pooch in its beak yesterday afternoon, witnessed by Becca’s partner.
The brown and white dog, whose breed only grows to around nine inches high,has not been seen since.
Becca, 24, issued a social media appeal for news of Gizmo, one of three chihuahuas she owns.
She told Devon Live: “My partner was in the garden putting the washing out at the time and suddenly he saw it swoop down.
“It carried Gizmo a fair way as we couldn’t see him anymore.
“I have no idea if he was dropped or where he is now.”
In a heartbreaking post to Facebook, Becca said that her young daughter was highly upset.
She wrote: “Please, please, please, anyone finds a chihuaua he’s mine a seagull has took him from my garden.
“Bottom of Maridon Road, Paignton. Have a really upset 6 year old missing her dog.”
A search of the area was launched yesterday and today they will be handing out leaflets in the local area.
There are several recorded incident of birds attacking small dogs – but dog lover Becca says she never expected something like this to happen to her.
In May 2015 another Devon pet owner watched in horror as her beloved chihuahua puppy was killed by a flock of seagulls.
Niki Wayne, 57, found the birds pecking tiny Bella to death after the pup pushed open a door and got out.
Bella managed to nudge open a slightly ajar door and was killed by the birds.
Mum-of-five Nikki, from Honiton, issued warnings to other residents to remain vigilant to prevent another attack.
She said she first noticed the seagulls perched on the roof, peering into the garden at the tiny dog and decided to seek advice.
Seagulls are carnivores and have been known to eat other birds. Some can grow to 2ft6in long, with a wingspan of more than 5ft and weigh as much as 5lb.
The RSPB has urged dog owners not to panic, insisting: “This must be extremely upsetting for the owner, but fortunately these incidents are very rare.
“It is not typical gull behaviour.”