Warning: This story describes a graphic scene.
City and conservative service officials are urging pet owners to keep their animals on a leash after a dog was killed by raccoons just off a popular walking path in Trail.
David Craig was walking his two dogs, a lab named Jango and a little Shih Tzu named Lucy, on Thursday morning at Gyro Park.
Craig said the larger dog must have picked up a scent before running through the tall grass into a swampy section, and started barking.
Lucy had followed, but couldn’t run away quickly.
“I went in to try to help her because I wasn’t sure what was going on,” Craig said. “The raccoons were just chomping down on her and didn’t (care at all that) I was there with a stick. One was ready to attack me…. It was horrible.”
Shaken and unable to retrieve Lucy’s remains, he went home and had his family contact the B.C. Conservation Officer Service.
“There are a few people that take their small dogs through there all the time, like I have been doing every morning for at least the past year,” he said. “With people walking through there, and kids playing down there, you can’t have a pack of raccoons … running around the neighbourhood.
“That’s what gets me, they weren’t scared of me at all, they were just hungry.”
Kyle Bueckert, a conservation officer in the West Kootenay zone, said the city will post signs about the aggressive raccoons in the park, and for pet owners to keep their dogs on a leash at all times.
“It’s very unlikely we would have a raccoon-human interaction,” he said. “It’s much more likely (this happened) given the fact that these dogs were off-trail investigating the raccoons.”