A Maple Ridge family is mourning the loss of its dog Juneau after a larger one mauled him in his own back yard Sunday afternoon.
Colleen McLeod had just returned home and put the Maltese-Pomeranian into the fenced back yard. But at that same moment, a large dog, jumped over a board into the yard.
Within seconds, the larger dog attacked. It bit into Juneau and shook him like a rag doll.
McLeod then grabbed Juneau, got into her car and drove to a vet in Langley, but her pet didn’t make it.
“He died just as a I got there. The poor little guy was suffering … I couldn’t do anything,” she said.
“I don’t know how you recover from that image, right? It’s heartbreaking when you can’t even rescue your dog in your own back yard.”
It was bad timing because had she let her dog out earlier or later, she would have seen the larger animal.
In the process, McLeod was also injured, taking three bites in the hand.
Juneau was named after the Alaskan city and he was a hit wherever he went, from the seniors lodge when she visited her mom, to the school where McLeod works as a custodian, to the Harley Davidson store in Langley where she visited.
He used to do tricks in order to get cookies and one of his favourite toys was a soother. Juneau initially stole a soother from McLeod’s niece, but later they bought one just for him.
“He absolutely loved that soother.”
McLeod is talking both to the RCMP and SPCA and says she’s knows the dog that attacked her pet.
The B.C. SPCA is investigating, said spokesperson Lorie Chortyk.
“This is a horrible thing for any pet owner to have to go through. Our hearts go out to this woman.”
According to the City of Maple Ridge’s animal control and licencing bylaw, a dog that kills or injures another domestic animal, or bites someone, is considered an aggressive dog, which is required to be muzzled when in public, while the owner must also post signs on their premises saying that there is an aggressive dog on the premises.
Maple Ridge Mayor Nicole Read called for a review of the bylaw last year with the goal of encouraging responsible pet ownership.
But that review hasn’t been done.
“These things are really traumatic,” when a dog gets loose and hurts somebody or something.
It’s upsetting to the entire community, Read added.
Pitt Meadows changed its bylaw in 2016 to deal with the same issue after a small dog, Buttons, was killed by a larger dog in 2015.
RCMP are also investigating.