The Santa Fe Animal Shelter and Humane Society on Monday euthanized a PIT BULL that attacked and killed a smaller dog over the weekend — the second such case in Santa Fe in less than a month.
The female pit bull, named Toffee, attacked and killed a chihuahua on a residential sidewalk Sunday morning, despite efforts by both owners to stop the fray.
Toffee’s owner surrendered the dog immediately after the attack. The owner had adopted Toffee from the Santa Fe animal shelter just two weeks before the incident, according to animal welfare officers.
In early July, two other pit bulls attacked and killed a poodle and bit its female owner in Ragle Park. The city impounded those dogs and later euthanized them.
The pit bulls in the July incident were running loose while their owner was at home.
According to an animal services report on Sunday’s incident, William Rhea was walking his brown pit bull on the sidewalk on Placita de Vida when they approached a home where a small brown Chihuahua was tied in the yard on a six-foot nylon leash.
Rhea told police his dog “was saying ‘Hello’ to my neighbor’s dog, then they fought. I dragged my dog away and she got off the leash and killed my neighbor’s dog. I tried everything to stop it.”
Both Rhea and the woman who owned the Chihuahua said Rhea jumped on top of his dog and attempted to remove the smaller dog from its mouth. Both pulled on a rope around the pit bull’s neck in an unsuccessful attempt to drag it away.
The Chihuahua’s owner said Rhea straddled his dog for about 20 minutes before he “was finally able to pry her mouth open.” By that time, the Chihuahua was dead.
Reached by phone Tuesday, Rhea said, “It’s just very sad.”
Police issued citations to both parties for violating dog-restraint laws. The owner of the Chihuahua did not return a call seeking comment.