Dog owners in a Saskatchewan city are keeping their pets close by as RCMP investigate the unusual death of a dog in Melville last week.
A black labrador retriever was found dead in a neighbour's yard.
'The dog was killed by a penetrating wound to its throat.'—RCMP Constable Brent Jolson
Constable Brent Jolson of Melville RCMP said the incident was not reported to police but they learned about it from Facebook postings.
He said investigators exhumed the dog and an autopsy was done.
"It was determined that the dog was killed by a penetrating wound to its throat," he said. "The matter is still under investigation and we are trying to determine the person or persons responsible for the incident."
Jolson said the dog's jugular vein and larynx had been slashed.
He said not much is known about how it happened, or whether the wound was caused by a human.
"We're not 100 per cent sure of that. It is a possibility that is being considered," he said. "It is an unusual nature and location of wound so we're definitely looking into the aspect that someone may have done this."
Natasha Lepp, owner of a dog rescue agency in the community, said many Melville pet owners are on edge.
"Everybody's taking extra precautions," she said. "(Like) staying outside with their dogs if they have to be outside."
Lepp has also heard another dog was killed the week before.
She said in both cases the dogs were left out overnight and found dead in the morning.
'Everybody's taking extra precautions, (like) staying outside with their dogs.'—Natasha Lepp
RCMP said they too are aware of that rumour but have had no further reports.
Lepp said until the mystery is solved, people are not taking any chances. She said dog owners who usually leave their dogs outside, are not doing that now.
"Some of the people from town are actually calling us to babysit their dogs, because we're on a farm and pretty safe out here," she said.
Police said they are not ruling out foul play, and are asking anyone with information to call them.