Haliburton OPP are reminding the public not to take the law into their own hands following the shooting deaths of a Haliburton County family’s two dogs last Thursday (October 21).
Lacey Finch, who lives on Trappers Trail in Dysart et al Township around 16 kilometres east of Haliburton, posted on Facebook on Sunday that her two dogs Hunter and Nova — a mother and her three-month-old puppy — were shot to death after they wandered onto an adjoining property.
“They were let out to do their daily routine of doing their business in the back yard before coming inside for the night and 10 minutes later I heard gunshots,” she writes.
Finch and her partner went looking for the dogs and found evidence they were shot on a neighbour’s property.
Finch adds that the “monster that did this” shot the dogs with a shotgun “at close range, took off their collars, dragged their bodies and covered them with sticks.”
According to Finch, both dogs were friendly and the neighbour’s adjoining property has no pets, children, or livestock “so there is nothing that my dogs, especially a three-month-old puppy, posed a risk to.”
The shooting was reporting to Haliburton OPP, who issued a media release on Wednesday morning stating they are still investigating the incident.
Finch’s original and subsequent Facebook posts on the shooting of her dogs have understandably provoked outrage, with several comments on the posts identifying a local man who was allegedly responsible for the shooting.
Haliburton OPP are aware of the posts and are asking people to let the police do their job.
“The OPP would like to remind the public that the person responsible for this has not been positively identified by police,” the media release states. “The Haliburton Highlands detachment will be investigating any incidents that appear to be in response to this shooting.”
In Ontario, shooting a dog that has wandered onto private property is only legally permitted under the Protection of Livestock and Poultry from Dogs Act, when a dog is found either attacking livestock or poultry or straying on property where livestock or poultry is regularly kept.