November 11, 2013
An Atlanta couple is still reeling from a tragic accident that took place this weekend involving an Atlanta police officer and their two-year-old dog Jane.
Kelly Rodriguez says she didn’t expect cops to show up to her home when someone dialed 911 by accident, but police still dropped by “just in case.”
“The cops called because I accidentally dialed 911, but I told them everything was ok,” Rodriguez described to My Fox Atlanta.
When Rodriguez answered her door, one of her two labrador pit bull mixes, Jane, ran out into their fenced yard.
“She was running down the porch with her whole body wagging,” Rodriguez said. “And the Atlanta police officer shot our dog Jane in the head.”
Jane was rushed to an emergency animal hospital where she didn’t survive the surgery to remove the bullet from her face. Rodriguez says the surgery would have been expensive, but she would have gladly paid the price.
“If she would have lived the vet bill would have been $4,000 but I was ready to pay. All my savings, I didn’t care. I just…it didn’t matter,” a visibly distraught Rodriguez stated. “It’s just so sad to think that we’re not ever gonna see her again.”
The Rodriguez family says they publicized their case to remind police to exercise discretion when it comes to dog interactions.
“The biggest thing is I just would hope that officers of the law would learn how to use mace or a taser gun or shoot a dog in the leg, and not shoot a dog wagging its tail in the head.”
Atlanta PD told Fox they’d have to wait until after Veteran’s Day for a comment.
Pet casualties at the hands of police unfortunately seem to occur with regularity.
In July, we covered a video showing Hawthorne, California police confronting a passerby for filming and then shooting his dog when it jumped out of the man’s car.
And last year, we wrote about the Austin Police Department’s new dog policy after an officer shot an Austin resident’s pet even after being told he would not bite.
However, sometimes pets live through the ordeal.
In September, we reported on Ammo the puppy, who miraculously survived being shot in the head at point blank range by Jones County, Georgia police. According to a Facebook support page, Ammo is recovering well.
One group is raising money to fund a documentary dedicated to raising awareness of the issue. A description of “Puppycide” on the documentary’s Kickstarter page estimates that “Every 98 minutes, a dog is shot by law enforcement.”