A family dog was killed with a crossbow in New Jersey on Sept. 20, when a hunter mistook it for a coyote. The dog owner said she was playing with her one-year-old Alaskan shepherd in the yard when Tonka ran off into the nearby woods and failed to return.
Elizabeth Middlemark Mongno said she was calling her dog for 15 minutes, only to find him lying in a pool of blood with a hunter’s arrow through his heart.
In a Facebook post, dated Sept. 21, Mongno said she and her family are devastated. She said the dog was especially important to her nine-year-old son and three-year-old daughter.
“Tonka put so many smiles on so many faces. His lovable, goofy personality made everyone around him happy. He was truly a one of a kind dog and we will miss him so much.”
Tonka was reportedly found dead just outside Mongno’s property. According to reports, the land between properties was open, legal hunting grounds.
The hunter had a hunting licence and said he believed the 95-pound dog was a white and grey-furred coyote chasing a deer. In the state, coyotes can be legally hunted.
The hunter has been fined $3,000 for careless discharge of a weapon and his hunting licence was suspended for seven years.