A Sacramento family is speaking out after their chihuahua was allegedly attacked and killed by their neighbor's dogs.
Gloria Rios, whose daughter posted about their situation on social media, say they repeatedly expressed their concerns about their neighbors' dogs to animal control, and that the incident could have been prevented.
"Animal control would always kind of tell us, 'okay we’re keeping record of what you’re reporting, we’re going to talk to the neighbors, we’re going to talk to the neighbors," Fabiola Hernandez, one of Rios' four daughters, told ABC10. "They only came to talk to the neighbors one time out of all the times that we reported they were in our backyard."
Sacramento City Animal Control confirmed to ABC10 that an officer did respond to one report of loose dogs at the house. The officer gave the owners a citation, but there was no evidence the dogs were dangerous.
Rios, however, believes her concerns should have been taken more seriously.
“She said that just like how animal control is willing to step in and investigate now that there's a dead dog, that the police and animal control should also take it seriously when a human calls and says' hey I might get injured...I’m at risk of being attacked in my own house,'" Hernandez said, translating for Rios, whose primary language is Spanish.
Hernandez said they first started feeling concerned in early July when their neighbors dogs created a crack in the fence and came into their yard. They fixed the fence, but it continued to happen.
On Wednesday night, the family woke up to their dogs barking. Rios went to let their three dogs in but only two of them came.
That's when she heard their neighbor yell out that their third dog, Nacho, was in their backyard.
Rios' youngest daughter retrieve the dog but found him bleeding in the neighbors' dog shed.
"My mom went around and as soon as she picked him up like a little gush of blood kind of came out and the neighbor kind of threw a towel over him to cover him up," Hernandez recalled, "And my mother and younger sister just rushed to the vet."
Nacho's injuries included broken ribs and punctured lungs. He didn't respond to treatment and had to be put down early Thursday morning.
Sacramento City animal control spokesperson Bobby Mann told ABC10 that the incident is now an open investigation and that prior to it officers did everything they could within the law.
"It's unfortunate that this is what happened and our heart goes out to he family," he said. "We can only base our assessments of a situation off of evidence...and previous to this incident there was no evidence of these dogs attacking another dog."