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Owner critical of police officers' use of bean bag gun on loose dog

Dog shot with bean bag gun
Dog shot with bean bag gun
Screen shot CBS Los Angeles

According to Tuesday's CBS Los Angeles News, a dog owner in West Covina, Calif., is angry about the way that police officers handled his dog, who had escaped from his yard.

Earlier this week, West Covina police officers were contacted by someone concerned that a loose dog was chasing after three children at a nearby school. Responding officers discovered "Max," a black Labrador retriever who had slipped out of James Clark's yard.

Max barked at the officers, who were trying to contain him to be returned to his yard - in response, the officers utilized non-lethal force, in the form of a bean bag gun. Clark is upset that his dog was hit with the bean bag; he told CBS News:

My heart broke. My heart still breaks every time I hear him whimper,”

“You know, it’s like my son here falling and getting hurt,”

When the officers attempted to put the dog back into the fenced yard, Clark's other dog "Chloe," also a Labrador retriever, was barking on the opposite side. In an attempt to push the dog back from the fence, an officer sprayed a fire extinguisher through the gate.

Clark is upset that the water was sprayed in his dog's face - the officers have stated that the nozzle was not directed at Chloe's face, it was only used to scare her back in order to allow them to safely put the escaped dog back inside of the yard.

Clark intends to file a formal complaint against the officers for the way that the situation was handled.

Other calls of dogs-at-large, who have barked or exhibited behavior perceived by officers as "aggressive," have ended with the loose dog being shot and severely injured, or killed. Individuals who have followed these stories have expressed a desire to see non-lethal methods utilized...methods such as pepper spray, bean bag guns, catch poles or fire extinguishers.

Weigh in - did these officers utilize the appropriate means to contain Clark's loose dog?

Watch a video of what took place in this situation at this link.

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