Dogs Shot and Killed in Merced County

Hillmar, CA It happened on Thursday at Washington near August in Hillmar. The 4-month-old Border Collie Mix doesn't have a name, but she's already a part of Eric Vasquez's family. Eric said, "She's got a lot of energy. She runs around, jumps on you."

On Thursday, shots rang out from behind Eric's Hillmar home. His step mom, Sandy Sturtevant ran outside and found two puppies who had been gunned down. Sandy said, "I went to the dog and the dog was clearly hurt and dying and it lasted one minute and I just sat with it."

Minutes later, a third puppy was found unharmed sitting in the road. Sandy said, "That's really scary and they just took off like that. I don't know who would do that to a dog.

Sandy says she saw a silver Dodge, Ram style truck leaving the scene.

Merced County Sheriff's officials say they are actively working the case to find out who would commit such a crime. Tom MacKenzie said, "Usually, when we get somebody shooting a dog, it's because it's attacking a family member or livestock. And in that case, it's actually justified. But just for whatever reason to take them out, turn them on the side of the road and shoot them, that's pretty inhumane. That's why it's a felony."

In the meantime, this Hillmar family is enjoying their new addition ... still trying to decide on a name that fits. Sandy said, "It's not gonna be Lucky. But it's gonna be something about you know, she survived, she made it!"

Anyone with information is urged to call the Merced County Sheriff's Office.

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