A Michigan man found two escaped dogs attacking his goats, and felt he had no choice but to shoot one to protect his livestock.
This is a difficult case for everyone. On one hand, a property owner who’s completely within their right to protect their livestock. On the other, you have and a dog owner who is devastated because their dog was shot.
But now, Sanilac County Prosecutor James V. Young has officially announced that his office won’t press charges against the person who shot a shepherd-huskie mix in the head with two crossbow bolts.
WARNING: EXTREMELY GRAPHIC PHOTO
Marty, the 7-year-old dog is now thankfully recovering from his wounds.
Sheriff deputies were able to quickly find the shooter who told them about the two dogs he found inside of his goat pen attacking his animals. He then told the deputies that he had tried to use a pitchfork to separate the dogs from his goats—who were already bleeding at the time—but wasn’t successful.
Claiming the crossbow was the only thing he had available, the property owner then shot one of the dogs twice.
Young’s office issued the following in a press release:
“Accordingly, as the evidence tends to support the person’s story that the dog was in the act of attacking his goats at the time that he shot at it, if proven true, he would have a legal justification for his action. As there is no evidence to the contrary, criminal prosecution is not available. The deputies who investigated the case have stated they agree with this determination.”
Investigators discovered the goats had injuries consistent with dog bites.
This isn’t the first time someone’s felt like a dog was threatening them or their livestock. In the fall of 2016, a concealed carry holder wasn’t charged after fatally shooting a loose dog he claimed was threatening him. In other instances, people have had to shoot wild cats for killing or trying to kill quite valuable goats.
The prosecutor’s office advised dog owners to use this particular incident as a lesson.
“While it is fortunate that the dog is expected to recover, this case serves as a good reminder that it is a dog owner’s responsibility to keep the dog safely at home so that incidents like this do not occur,” the release said.
Cover photo via Facebook/Tammy Lumley Lortt