LINDA, CA - Seven alpacas were killed in an apparent pit bull attack at Yuba College.
The animals were part of Yuba College's veterinary tech program. Program Director Scott Haskell realized the animals had been attacked when he dropped by to feed the animals at the college's farm around 6:15 a.m. Friday. He said he noticed something was wrong when he didn't see the two male alpacas in their pen.
"There was one here, crumpled up and severely mutilated," Haskell recounted.
Haskell looked over at the female alpaca pen and noticed only three of the 10 alpacas were standing.
"As I started to check, I saw multiple animals down dead; all mutilated. At the same time, I saw two dogs savaging the last three alpaca females," Haskell said. "It was gruesome. The dogs had done things with alpacas that were just horrific."
Haskell saw two dogs. He described one as being a pure pit bull, the other a pit bull mix. Haskell got in his car and chased the blood soaked dogs off campus, but he lost them somewhere in the neighborhood.
As Haskell chased the dogs, Bonnie Loghry rushed to save the three alpacas. They survived although one had a severe gash from the attack. A total of seven alpacas were killed and two cows were injured.
The surviving animals were placed in a more secure enclosure. Animal control also put out traps in case the dogs returned.
"It's been a pretty horrific day," Loghry said.
Blood also stained the grass in one of the pens. A ball of alpaca fiber, presumably from the mauling, was also left.
"This was the most brutal (attack) I've seen with alpacas," Haskell said.
The loss of the animals is a huge hit to the college's vet tech program. The alpacas were about a year old and were all paid for by the students' vet tech club.
Haskell doubts this is the dogs' first kill and he believes they will attack again. He doesn't think the dogs are strays. He saw a collar on one of them and thinks someone knows who these dogs belong to.
"In their mind, this was fun last time," Haskell said. "It will be fun again."
"They didn't kill because they were hungry. They didn't eat them. They shredded them," Loghry added. "I'm concerned for animals and also for people."