NEWNAN, Ga. – Authorities say a dog that was up for adoption at a Georgia pet store had to be euthanized after being stabbed.
“Clara” was a pit bull who was taken to an adoption event at PetSmart to meet a potential family.
According to police, a volunteer with the Newnan-Coweta Humane Society was walking Clara outside when she broke from her collar and ran back into the store.
Once inside, Clara walked up to a Yorkshire terrier and grabbed its ear.
The owner of the terrier, Craig Hayes, told police he kicked Clara and yelled for help.
After about 15 or 20 seconds, he pulled out a pocket knife and stabbed Clara three times in the neck.
“When I rounded the corner, I seen blood all over the floor and I seen the pit bull have the other dog by the back of the neck,” Mike Wohler said. “[I saw] it had ahold of the little dog but it wasn’t biting or doing any type of aggressive movement as in it wasn’t thrashing around, shaking his head,…it’s like they were in pause.”
Wohler told WGCL that he put his hand in Clara’s mouth and realized she wasn’t biting the Yorkie that hard.
“About the time, the pet store manager came up with that mace-type spray for the dog that apparently they use when dogs get into fights, and sprayed her,” Wohler said. “As soon as they sprayed her she let go and then sat down and was sitting there wagging her tail.”
Witnesses say it wasn’t necessary to stab Clara but Hayes said he was just defending his dog.
“I could see there was no blood or any type of substantial wound right there on the little dog,” Wohler said.
Hayes says he was concerned the dog would attack him and his 8-year-old child.
However, Wohler says Hayes seemed like he was looking for an excuse to stab the dog because she was a pit bull.
“So the whole time that was going on, the guy is screaming ‘effing pit bull this, ‘effing pit bull that, I hate these dogs. I don’t know why they are even allowed around anymore,’” Wohler said.
Wohler said Hayes even stabbed Clara once after the dogs were pulled apart.
The decision was made to euthanize Clara because of the extent of her injuries.
Police said they are conducting a follow-up investigation and charges will depend on the outcome of the investigation.
“I wish they would [file charges] because what this guy did was absolutely insane and unnecessary,” Wohler said. “I understand he would want to protect his dog, but there are so many other ways to break up a dog fight than stabbing one in front of a bunch of kids and women in a pet store during an adoption day.”