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Two dog walkers have been criticised for allowing their pup to chase nesting swans into a lake, where it landed itself in a vicious fight.
Shocking wildlife photography snaps show the off-lead dog in a ferocious battle with an adult cob in the water near Tadpole Garden Village, in Swindon, Wiltshire.
Amateur photographer, Shohini Dutta, 40, took the pictures on Thursday morning, after claiming to have seen the cob 'swooped over [the dog] like an eagle'.
The terrifying pictures capture the swan rising up out of the water to loom over the mutt in a bid to protect its young, before it eventually fled the water.
The dog's owners reportedly looked on 'stunned and flabbergasted' as the violent encounter unfolded, and Shohini claims 'tragedy' was only narrowly averted for both creatures.
As the pictures show, both animals angrily snapped and jumped at each other, but eventually the swan managed to chase the dog away.
Now mum-of-two Shohini is sharing the images as a 'lesson' to other dog owners, warning them to keep their pets under control or face potentially devastating consequences.
Shohini, from Swindon, Wiltshire, said: "To be honest, I've never seen anything like this before. It was a first time for me.
"My heart was in my mouth. It was so quick.The dog was taken aback because the swan was like an eagle, swooping over him and trying to chase him out.
"This is breeding season and the swans can turn really ferocious during nesting times.
"The swan then went back to his nest to check on his partner and the eggs. The female was on the nest guarding the eggs.
"The owners looked stunned and flabbergasted. They didn't know what was going on.
"All morning I was thinking that tragedy was averted."
Shohini had been photographing some chicks on Thursday morning when she suddenly spotted a male swan behaving erratically.
As she looked closer, she discovered the sand-coloured dog paddling around the huge bird, as the bird towered over it in a threatening manner.
Shohini said: "I'm always out and about with my camera after I've dropped my kids off at school.
"I was trying to photograph the chicks then I suddenly saw the swan swooping into the water trying to chase something off.
"I took a closer look and saw it was a dog. They were both in danger. At the end of the day, it's a lesson learnt to dog owners to have them under control.
"I think the poor owners were far behind and by the time they came and frantically started calling his name out, he was already in the midst of this fight.
"Thankfully they both came off unharmed. It was quite an ordeal. Thank goodness both are safe.
"Dog owners should really keep their dogs on the lead at all times, especially when near to wildlife or lakes.
"It's all animal behaviour - you can never predict what will happen."
Reacting to the pictures, as Shohini shared them on social media, one person wrote: "This angers me so much, why would any responsible dog owner allow this?"
As another commenter said: "Absolutely disgusting."
"Surely no responsible dog owner would allow a dog to have a swim in a lake where there were swans, especially at nesting times," said a third
While one concerned viewer called the owners 'damn fools', a fellow commented reflected: "Hate to see this. Spent nine hours once watching over a swan badly injured by a dog, until it's rescue. Sadly, it had to be put asleep. Don't think I'll ever forget it."
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