The owner of a white American bulldog is facing three charges, after the dog allegedly burst through a fence and killed Ruggles, a Shih Tzu being walked in an alley Saturday.

Though the eight-year-old bulldog’s breed is genetically predisposed to canine aggression, the dog, named Smokey, is gentle and submissive with humans, said city co-ordinator of animal control enforcement Art Becker.

“We’ve had a tragic event and know the dog owner responsible has been very considerate, and committed to building a larger fence around his yard,” Becker said. “He really loves that dog — it’s evident.”

Smokey’s owner has been handed three charges: Dog attack causing death of another animal, animal not under control, and owning a dog without a licence.

Though Ruggles’ owners are calling for the bulldog’s death or removal, the likely penalties will be less severe, Becker added, as Smokey has no history of aggression, and was reasonably confined in his yard.
“It was just a sequence of time and opportunity,” he said.

If his owner is convicted, Smokey will be placed on a restricted dog list.

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