ELLICOTT — Dogs on the loose are killing small livestock and some pets around the town of Ellicott in eastern El Paso County. "We don't know if these dogs are dumped or if they belong to somebody, but they have been on, for lack of a better term, a rampage all summer," said Ellicott resident, Cami Mahagan.
The dogs have killed dozens of chickens from Mahagan’s coup. Posting on a social media site for Ellicott residents, others share stories of also losing animals to the dogs. Mahagan said, "Our neighbors have lost many, many birds, cats and we don't even know what else. We've heard recently that they've turned aggressive toward some of the larger livestock. One person said, they were aggressive toward a person."
With a security camera Mahagan got video of the four dogs that look German Shepherds running onto her property. She also sent a letter to the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office asking for help and direction. "We understand the Sheriff's Office is super busy with way more important things, but with the duration of this event and how long it's been going on and the amount of damage they have done, it's getting to the point where it's become dangerous."
A Sheriff’s Deputy did meet with residents to discuss the issue. Some have suggested they can just shoot the dogs. The Deputy explained there are circumstances where shooting a threatening dog is legal, but there are limitations.
There is also a message for people who think dumping unwanted dogs and cats in rural areas is a good idea. "It does a lot of damage to where we all live and ultimately it's not safe for the animals. They could get shot. They get runover,” said Mahagan. Even more common, is they get killed by wild animals. The best option for a dog or cat you are not able to keep, is to take it to the Humane Society.