By Adam Strunk
It was Kansas Day when Maggy Prouty Smet’s daughter reported a problem.
“She drove by our house and saw two dogs running on the property.”
The Smet family lives just outside of Newton on the western end of their city. They keep two alpacas, meant to ward off predators for their other livestock, goats and poultry.
The two dogs ended up attacking the alpacas causing both to need medical treatment. One, named Chewpacca, had stitches for bites below its tale. The other, named Manny Paccy, was bit on its face, puncturing its sinus cavities.
Both had treatment but Manny eventually died of his injuries after the facial wound became infected.
“Good dogs can do bad things when they get into a pack mentality,” Smet said.
She said vet bills and the cost of the alpaca amounted to a loss of around $1,000, as well as a heartache for the family.
She added that the dogs were found and were friendly following the attack. She said they had collars but had no tags. Animal Control took the dogs to Caring Hands Humane Society. The dogs were not claimed. She said authorities eventually decided to put the unclaimed dogs down following the attack.
She said that the entire situation of losing the alpaca, as well as what happened to the two dogs that attacked made her sad.
“It hurts my heart,” she said.
She wanted other dog owners to do what they could to keep their dogs from running at large. She also said she understood accidents happen and that her dog gets away sometimes, too. She said dog tags could have helped avoid the situation. It also would have been easier for those responding to know if the dogs were up to date on their shots.
Following the incident, she said she received a sympathy card from Sheriff’s Deputy Ronnie Wagner and Newton Animal Control Officer Lyndsey Robinette.
Smet said she appreciated the gesture.