Judge orders dogs put down in alpaca attack

Published: Sep. 27, 2012 at 12:13 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 2, 2012 at 5:09 PM EDT
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A judge ordered this dog, and one other, put down after an alpaca mauling.
A judge ordered this dog, and one other, put down after an alpaca mauling.

ESSEX, VA (WWBT) - A judge ordered a pair of dogs euthanized for their role in the deaths of 13 alpacas in August.

The Essex County dog owner maintains his pit bulls weren't responsible for the attacks, however the judge ruled there was enough evidence to prove the dogs were to blame. The dog owner, Alonzo Norman, now has ten days to file an appeal.

Farm owners from the "Upright Alpaca Farm" lost 13 of their 15 alpacas in the mauling. Donors have helped raising thousands of dollars to help cover Abbey and Wes Gauvin's medical expenses.

The dogs were taken into the custody of Animal Control. Their owner says he feels badly for the Gauvins, but doesn't believe his dogs were responsible for the deaths. He says the dogs only came over because they "smelled the animals."

Norman says the dogs have never shown any signs of violence and he always felt they were gentle creatures, even around his 5-month-old son.

Abbey Gauvin found the injured and dead alpacas along with two of Norman's pit bulls in her yard.

Gauvin said the attack has cost her well over $100,000 in hospital bills and damages. She plans on filing a civil suit.

Farmers in Essex have pushed for a county dog ordinance that would hold owners criminally liable if their dogs are running at large.

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