On 3 March at 9 a.m., Aella, a one-year-old Border Collie, sustained an injury on her left paw from broken glass while walking in the grass of the Lade Braes.
Aella belongs to St Andrews local Elaine Russell’s son who lives in Aberdeen. Mrs Russell was taking Aella on a walk through the Lade Braes before her doctor — who was visiting St Andrews and also lives in Aberdeen — was to take Aella back with her.
The pad on Aella’s paw was, “sliced,” and was “hanging off by a bit,” Mrs Russell told The Saint in a phone interview. As of the interview, conducted on 12 March, Aella’s wound had been reopened that required her to wear a boot. She will be unable to walk for a couple of weeks.
“We had to call an emergency vet because the vet in St. Andrews is closed on Sunday,” Mrs Russell said. Aella had to be transported to Cupar for treatment. Mrs Russell said that Aella is uneasy riding in the car, and the wound to her paw exacerbated that, adding that Aella was visibly “stressed.”
The veterinarian had to operate on Aella’s paw, a procedure that Elaine said cost £400.
“I don’t care about the money as long as the dog gets better,” Mrs Russell said.
Mrs Russell said that there is a lot of broken glass on the streets of St Andrews. Though she can avoid the glass on the streets while walking her own dogs, broken glass in parks — such as Kinburn Park— pose a danger, she said.
“I’m not blaming students, but the incident of glass on the streets does increase during term time,” Mrs Russell said.
With the warming weather and the increasing number of barbecues and picnics, Mrs Russell hoped Aella’s injury would bring awareness to the danger broken glass poses, she said.
Mrs Russell said she hoped people would, “Be mindful of cleaning up, the way they dispose of litter, especially glass and cans, whether they package it up and put it in a bin or even if they put it in a plastic bag and left it for someone else to pick up.”
“If you think about throwing a bottle, could you maybe consider the consequences that may happen?” Mrs Russell asked.
The week following her injury, Aella stayed with Elaine in St Andrews for treatment. As Mrs Russell walked Aella through Kinburn Park, she said that students have been very kind to Aella, and reaffirmed she is not blaming students, but wanted to, “highlight the danger of throwing a glass bottle or can.”
“That’s really important, because if it’s left lying around, then someone’s going to get injured,” Mrs Russell said.