By Mason Jones

A BRITISH expat witnessed a dog ‘brutally beaten and killed’ outside her home in Almogia, Malaga.

Susie Murdoch, 55, saw a man trying to retrieve a male mastin from the top of her drive before launching a vicious attack on the animal.

“I saw the mastin, then a man following it and shouting as it tried to hide behind a tree.

“He picked up a very large stick from the ground and began beating the dog so I ran up the drive shouting,” said Murdoch.

“He shouted something back at me in Spanish and then walked away.”

As the owner left the premises, Murdoch went after the injured animal.

After nearly 30 minutes of searching, Murdoch saw the dog collapse in a nearby field through a pair of binoculars.

Dog beaten to death by owner

Murdoch, originally from Brighton, found the animal dead with what appeared to be a broken spine.

After reporting the attack to local police, Murdoch has been asked by some locals to withdraw her claims because ‘the man has a wife and children’.

“That is something I will not do,” she said.

“It’s absolutely disgusting, the dog was killed just because it wouldn’t go back to him,” added the expat.

It emerges that the man, who is thought to be in his mid-forties, also owns several other animals.

Mastins are commonly used throughout Spain to guard livestock due to their size and temperament.

The incident is just one of many recent reports of animal cruelty in Andalucia, with one man running over his own dog in Estepona.

The case has now been referred to the Guardia Civil.

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  1. Are readers also aware that to keep a dog chained up 24 hours a day is illegal. that the chain must be at least 3 metres long, or three time the total length of the animal, that it must be taken off its chain and out of its normal surroundings or at least a hour a day, and so on. I doubt whether the Spanish are aware.

  2. You must be joking if you think the Spanish would know such a thing ! I have never seen such cruelty to the larger dogs here ! they only like pocket dogs because they make them feel good that they are in command ! i have seen dogs hanging from trees because they cannot hunt or frightened of the gun ! i have seen people throw them out of Cars . And when the bitch is no longer required for breeding they either let them go or hang them barbaric ways they will get their Karma ! I have a neighbour thats keeps breeding from his bitch and just never feeds them enough the pups die ! they are of mixed breed too and the poor bitch does not get enough food yes i am angry !!!

  3. Nothing worse than the spanish village that we lived in in Seville, they do not know how to treat Dogs! Glad we left the place, their is nastiness all over but never witnesses like what we saw and heard of in Spain

  4. Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

    Not you can beat them to death and treat them in unimaginable ways. I thought Spain was a religious country however to be fair some pretty despicable things happen in the UK and other countries.

  5. Iron Age superstition is supposed to inform the way we live our lives in the 21st century Peter? Dear me. I have nothing to say to that sort of superstitious nonsense that will pass the moderators.
    I feel terrible for the dog and sympathy for the witness who will undoubtedly now be persecuted by her neighbors whether or not there is a satisfactory outcome in the courts, which seems unlikely. But the beast who killed the dog should thank his “patron saint” I wasn’t there.

  6. Sadly, this type of animal cruelty is all too common in Andalucia. As Barabara Kirby said,the Andalucian apetite for cruelty knows no bounds.

    I have just left a village on the outskirts of Seville after 4 years, during which time I have seen the results of appalling abuse.

    Although Spain is a Catholic country, this is part of the problem. The vatican will not recognise animals as sentient beings and will not speak out against, for example, bull fighting and even endorses this cruelty.

    There is no empathy and no compassion.

    There are many things wrong with Spain’s attitude to animals, from horses ridden with the medieval serreta noseband to subsidised hare coursing and the appalling treatment of the glagos and podencos.

    The week before I left, I had to speak to a group of teenagers in the park who were preparing cocks for fighting.

    Please Andalucia, step out of the darkness. You are in terrible recession, please move forwards.

  7. This story is a disgrace,so what if he has a wife and family,he could do the same to them one day ,he is obviousey a violent man.Animal abusers should be pay for their actions and recomend this evil man be prosected.The neighbourse are as bad as him for asking her to with draw her claimabsolutely disgustin.

  8. Religions and traditions over the world (in Europe and Asia) are the problem. Issues considering animal welfare are best in those countries that are not as religious. As Louise said, Catholic religion is part of the problem. The vatican will not recognise animals as sentient beings and will not speak out against and even endorses this cruelty. They also are against neutering. And inhumane euthanasia. This is everywhere in Eastern and Southern Europe. And in Asia for other stupid traditions, beliefs and traditions. Religions should have been forbidden a long time ago! They do nothing good for other sentient beings as animals, but cruelty everywhere and wars between humans as well.

  9. This man should have the book thrown at him and banned from keeping any animals. The only reason a dog doesn’t can back to it’s owner is from fear of being hit or kicked.
    This man should get hardest punishment possible to make an example of him.
    We are their voice and we are going to shouot LOUD!
    Susie .. you don’t have to look far to find support. Keep it up … we’ll all stand shoulder to shoulder if need be to get justice for the poor dog.

  10. Some comments here on the abuse you have seen to animals.. Just how many of you, said anything and how many of you reported it? Like this lady has done.

    I’m sick of Spanish bashing mentality, Spain is NOT the only country where there is cruelty to animals (that includes humans as well) many others are just as bad if not worse.
    There are laws to protect animals in Spain and they will be and can be used but you have to report the abuse, many don’t… example of the horse being dragged and beaten down a main road near where I live (also reported by OP) plenty of people walked passed ‘oooh poor horse’ and some were English, even the police didn’t intervene.. then someone did and the horse and her foal rescued.. mare later died from her injuries.. foal now safe in anothers hands, owners charged. But out of the many who walked by and saw this, only one had the balls to do anything. It’s those people who will make a difference.

    Agreed many Spanish don’t know the laws, (many English or foreigners don’t either) and sometimes they don’t ‘get’ they are being cruel, but attitudes are changing, albeit slowly. Sometimes things need to be worded in such a way you are helping someone not get into trouble.. I have done things this way before.. the end result is they animal is treated better and the person more knowledgeable. Agreed in this instance, that wouldn’t work!

    Not all Spanish are complete brutes, many are doing a lot of work to get better laws and conditions for animals, support and help is what is required, not condemnation of a whole nation, based on the actions of a few.

    I hope this lady gets a lot of support for having the guts to do something and the guy has the law book thrown at him… he deserves it.

  11. I have recently set up an Association ACTIN,that is trying to encourage change towards animals in Spain. We are doing many things and change will come. But it is important that these kind of cases are reported and if people are worried or intimated, they should contact an Animal welfare association to support them. The problem because people don’t report enough cases, is that the powers that be, say ‘not many denuncias, so there is no problem’. We have to stand up for these animals and be their voice. Good Luck to Susan Murdoch to be brave enough to complain. If she sees this comment I hope she will make contact with us, as we would certainly offer her moral support and possibly some legal advice too, depending on the situation.
    Vivienne Wharton
    Animal Care Treatment International Network

  12. Let’s not tar the spanish with the same brush. There are plenty of evil people who would carry out such a cruel act in many other countries including the UK. Things ARE getting better here, hard as that may be to swallow. But for certain I applaud the witness for pursuing the case as the dog did surely not deserve to be treated this way. If only animal owners would realise that the animal will not return to the them if they are only going to get beaten. Common sense should dictate that!

  13. Spain has a certain level of brutality seen nowhere else in europe, obviously. It is connected with macho culture, and male dominance. As much as it is a beautiful country i would not dear to stay there, and especialy to live there. A person can easily hate human kind when sees things done to others.
    I keep fingers crossed that this lady is able to do something and that this buster gets what deserves.

  14. After living 12 years in Spain,, i am not afraid to say that Spanish are primitivos in thinking and actions…they are 100 egocentric, lie from morning till evening..have no respect for nothing; are so corrupt and prim-evil brutal. I can not wait to get out of here…

  15. In my Village they will sometimes shoot stray dogs, they see them as vermin. Getting shot is a quicker death than being beaten to death or dying of thirst or hunger, so maybe that is the only benefit I can see. You probably all know this and have seen the partridges in the markets, my neighbours like many Spanish keep partridges in cages that they can only stand up in. There is no room to open their wings. They do this to weaken their muscles. They then take them out in shooting season, let them out on the ground to attract other wild partridges, then shoot them. I don’t think there can be much wildlife left in Spain. Some idiots even blast their shot guns at groups of small finches to keep their macho egos up. Times have changed in most other Countries, Spain is still in the 60’s with its thinking. I don’t think they should ban hunting and I admire some of their self sufficient ways as it is a vital source of food for many but they are wiping out all animals. There should be a limit.

  16. Not all Spanish people are ignorant peasants like this man obviously is.
    If you can’t love and respect an animal then you’re not fit to own one. The Guardia will probably lose the paperwork as they’re more interested in fineing innocent Guiri’s for absurd reasons- he’ll get away with it, the precedent has been set for years now, animals aren’t really that important here.

  17. I may seen the sun rise ! but I was also in spain for 12 years and will never forget the kind of cruelty inflicted here like the dog who had his eyes gouged out, does anyone know what happened to him ? would love to know
    Why didnt this women stop him beating this dog, i would have done.
    If you are an animal lover never live in the campo you will see horrific things. live on the coast where there is less cruelty.

  18. Carla you are so right – I live in the countryside and there are dogs all around us. Most howl like lost souls looking for salvation. I tell myself that they are the lucky ones as most are fed regularly, but I agree that if you are sensitive to the non-pampered keeping of animals, that the countryside is probably not the place for you! After all, those of us who adore these dogs will treat them like our children – it’s just not like that here. As with most European countries, there will always be nasty people who will always mistreat animals. They equally then are hopefully open to education about what wonderful loving family pets they can be……..

  19. Message for Carla in response to her comment of 11.43am… Did you try and stop that dog having it’s eyes gouged out! I know the answer cos people in Spain often turn their backs. Not in the case of this dear lady who chased after the man who was beating the dog only to find that she was too late as he had killed the dog. Carla DO NOT RESPOND to something you obviously know little about. Also if you witnessed such cruelty when you lived in Spain for 12 years did you EVER report it to the Guardia, I guess not cowards never do…



  21. Agreed that this act of cruelty should be punished asap. As some of you have pointed out, in Spain we have already laws for animal protection, but what’s more important people are progressively becoming more aware that this kind of abuse should be socially condemned.

    Please stop blaming a general group of people called Spaniards just because you’ve bad experiences with some individuals. By placing the tag “Spain” in your comments, you are including us all and that’s unfair. Just think about it.

  22. The MORALITY and PROGRESS of a country can be measured by the treatment of its animals. GHANDI
    We live on the edge of the campo and see these half starved hunting dogs stuffed into tiny trailers and bumped up the roads with no padding on the floor. and afterwards left outside the bars in very hot or very cold weather while MACHO man gloats inside.

  23. The laws in Spain need reforming and then implementing. Until people start reporting and denouncing, then nothing will change. Seprona tells us there is no problem – why? Because there are not enough complaints registered. To all of the people who have seen terrible things, take photos and report, or send them to me at “”, tell your neighbours to give water to their dogs and lead by example…we cant make any changes by moaning about it and doing nothing. The lady who has witnessed and reported it, has had a good response from the Police who ARE taking it seriously. so perhaps we should not assume that it wont be taken seriously… To T. Allen, try tapping macho man on the shoulder when he is in the bar and tell him his dogs need water…

  24. I have read all the comments before and after mine, it is not easy to make a complaint of any sort regarding anything to do with Spanish villagers whether it be cruelty or a house break in or anti social behavior by teenagers or vandalism! especially when we are not from their country, done our best for nearly 2 years, broke in 3 times, abused etc Guardia don`t want to know!!! The second time we were broken into the Guardia actually said ” is expected as NO WORK!” It is their way of life the way they treat animals, I too got upset when men were cock fighting near my back door and was told to mind my own business, the children think it is fun to stone a dog, I heard of tales from other Brits that puppies were chopped up and put in bins. I witnessed hunting dogs tied up on short ropes to walls in all weathers Red hot and no dishes of water, if you complain you are victimised! I am a lady pensioner and was actually sexually abused at one time and was told to keep my mouth shut or the whole village would go against me and my husband.

  25. Loopyloo, what you have been through and seen is beyond comprehension for people that don’t know and have never witnessed or lived with anything like this, I am sorry to hear about it and I hope things will get better where you are – don’t lose hope. I want to say to those that read about the victimisation, please do not be put off contacting an animal welfare organisation and asking for help, there is help and things are improving. The lady, who is the subject of the story has told me personally that the Police took the complaint seriously and are investigating it and the rumours of neighbours asking her to drop the complaint, are not true. There are many now setting up to help and make denuncias on behalf of witnesses, the thing is if we don’t, the cruelty will continue and the victimisation too, as people that perpetrate these kinds of crimes to animals, will have no hesitation in hurting and frightening human beings. We cant sit back and let it continue. Even us ex -pats, we live here, most pay their taxes or make some input into Spanish society and economy, so we are just as entitled to have our say about what happens. I set up my Association last June and have been asking questions and trying to do something about the problem for a year, prior to that I just kept rescuing dogs and compromising my business and my life here. Now I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. We are working with lawyers, who are working on reforms of the laws and begging people to denounce to help the situation. If more people complain then the government will have to listen and maybe the ignorance will be tackled too. Education, sterilisation, awareness, and reporting cruelty are the things that will help. Please be brave, contact someone for help. My Association is ACTIN – Animal Care Treatment International Network. “”. I personally live in a village where there are animals thrown in bins, cock fighting, dog fighting, illegal breeding, dogs on chains left without water, Galgos mis-treated and abandoned. However, in 5 years that I have been here there is a marked change because of the work I have done and now my Association is getting stronger, although we are still very new and learning. We have Spanish vets and lawyers on our committee, I have worked hard for this and will continue but we need the people’s support.

  26. Hi Loopyloo,
    Please tell us other fairytales! I’m sure you must have suffered the effects of armed village gangs and bullying Guardia Civil! I’m just wondering why you are living in such a unfair country, you must be going through a nightmare.

    Just think about returning to the UK, where life is much easier. During daylight everything is more or less ok, but just have a walk around some place where pubs or discos are crowded at night. You will be surprised how interestingly human behaviour completely changes from Let’s-have-a-cup-of-tea to I’ll-beat-you-because-I-have-drunk-some-beers. You may like to discuss this topic as well. Have a nice day!

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