Owner wants dog's remains

By Nicole Bell - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - A local dog owner is in despair. Police shot and killed his beloved pet, Boss. The dog's owner says he's upset that he can't get the animal's remains back --so he can have the dog stuffed and mounted.

Police say the dog was shot and killed because it attacked an officer. Since the dog's death, Terence Tucker says he's made several unsuccessful attempts to get his pet's remains from Animal Control. NBC12 tracked down what exactly happened to the dog's body.

Boss is a 9-year-old bulldog who was raised by Tucker.

"It's my baby. Me and that dog loved each other; when you see him, you see me," said Tucker.

Boss died back in September. The animal slipped out of its collar and got loose.

"This is the first time I've known him to slip out," said Tucker.

Police say when they and Animal Control responded to a call for the loose dog -- Boss bit an officer.   Police shot the dog.

"I want his remains. I want answers," said Tucker.

Police say for safety and health reasons Animal Control cannot keep the remains of an animal housed at its facility for any real length of time and that it's up to the owner to contact Animal Control immediately to request the remains. Tucker says he requested Boss' body the day of the incident and twice more in the following days -- but still came up empty handed.

Police say those requests were never made. We did track down Boss' remains. After the animal's body was taken by Animal Control it was sent to a local veterinary hospital.

Police say part of the animal was sent to the state lab where it will be tested for rabies. The rest of the remains have been discarded. News Tucker calls devastating.

"The family is just tore up right now," said Tucker.

NBC12 did request an on-camera interview with representative from the police department, which oversees Animal Control; we were told no one was available.

During a phone conversation a spokesperson for the department said there is no written policy or code when it comes to Animal Control taking custody of animal remains and that there's only a written policy for animals that are alive when taken into custody by the agency. The officer who was attacked by the dog did not need medical attention.

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