Loose Husky on small animal killing spree runs through backyard in Utah
Trip Kiss and his wife run a petting zoo in their backyard in Tooele, Utah, that local kids with disabilities visit. They have rabbits, ducks, chickens and even a tortoise.
Early Tuesday morning, though, Kiss' motion sensors went off in his backyard. His home security cameras caught a predator.
"She was chewing our goose. That goose was so friendly. It would follow us around at charity events," Kiss told McClatchy. "[The dog] dug out the rabbits from their enclosure."
The video shows a husky run across his backyard with what Kiss said was one of his rabbits in its mouth. Police in Tooele told KSTU that footage captures part of the dog's late-night killing spree, during which it dragged off and killed 27 small animals in Kiss' and another neighbor's backyards.
"A second lady from a couple houses down came and told the officers that 15 of her chickens had also been killed by the same animal," Sgt. Jeremy Hansen of the Tooele Police Department told the station. "There was 12 at the first residence, then 15 chickens at the second residence for a total of 27."
From Kiss' backyard, the dog took and killed a cat, two rabbits, two ducks, five chickens, the goose and a turkey. All 27 animals were found scattered along two blocks of the street on which Kiss and his wife live.
Tooele police caught the husky the next morning around 9 a.m., according to the Tooele Transcript. It has been in quarantine at the Tooele Animal Shelter ever since.
While city officials decide whether to euthanize the dog, Kiss said he wants it to get a second chance. He believes the husky's owner is at fault for the dog getting loose in the neighborhood.
"I've been in touch with Arctic Rescue, an organization based here in Utah, about possibly taking the dog in," Kiss said. "I'm dedicated to preserving the dog's life, which is more than the owner has done, since she's left town."
That owner is Mackenzie G. Morton, 29, of nearby Taylorsville, Utah, police say. She told KSTU that her 4-year-old husky named Nikita got loose from her boyfriend's house that night, and she has offered apologies to the residents whose animals the dog killed.
"That's not fair," she told the station. "And I'm so sorry. I didn't think she would go on a killing spree. That's not like her."
She's been charged with one misdemeanor count of animal running at large and five misdemeanor counts of animal biting other animals, according to the Transcript. Police say that could add up to as much as $1,350 in fines.