Animal-control officers have identified the owners of two dogs that were shot to death Sunday after the animals had killed six deer at Hogle Zoo.
Zoo director LaMarr Farnsworth said he believes the dogs were the same ones that destroyed three of the zoo's deer last year.Animal-control officers worked Sunday and Monday trying to identify the owners of the dogs.
Frank Crow, animal-control investigator, asked the Deseret News Monday not to print the story, fearing publicity would ruin chances for locating the owners, who face possible misdemeanor charges.
The paper agreed to wait until the owners were identified.
Police officers arrived at the zoo about 4 a.m. Sunday and observed two dogs running wildly in the deer pens.
Two officers fired nine shotgun rounds and 10 service revolver rounds at the two 50-pound dogs, believed to be a chow-husky mix, according to a police report.
Sgt. Scott Folsom said the dogs were hit by most of the shots but would not fall. "I was amazed at how many rounds they took," Folsom said.
Farnsworth told officers the dogs had killed five pregnant European fallow deer and one recently acquired buck. The deer were valued at $500 each, Farnsworth said.
In addition to the fatalities, 12 deer were injured and will require medical treatment, Farnsworth said. The zoo now has 30 does and one buck in its deer herd. "It's a loss. Hopefully we won't lose any more. I'm relieved that the (killer) dogs are no longer a threat."
The director said citizens need to obey city ordinances prohibiting dog owners from letting their pets run loose. He said dogs can form packs and become bloodthirsty.
Animal-control officer Frank Crow said the dogs are suspected of killing at least six sheep at Pioneer Trail State Park as well as several wild deer in the area.
Crow said animal-control investigators developed several good leads Monday and were expected to file city misdemeanor charges against the owners of the dogs.