DANVILLE, Va., June 11 (UPI) -- A Virginia police chief said an officer followed regulations when he shot and killed a miniature dachshund that growled and ran at him.
Danville Police Chief Philip Broadfoot said the officer, whose name was not released by police, encountered the 11-year-old dog while serving two outstanding warrants to a neighbor, the Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch reported Thursday.
Broadfoot said in a release that the officer was returning to his car when "he was surprised by a growling dog running through the yard directly at him from the rear, leaving him with just seconds to consider his options."
The police chief said the dog lunged at the officer.
"Shooting a dog which is actively presenting a threat to an officer is within the department's policy," the release stated.
The dog's owners, Tawaiin Harper and his family, said the officer's supervisor "was very, very remorseful."
"He kept apologizing. And he said, 'I know apologizing can't bring the dog back, but I just don't know what to say,'" Harper said.
Residents said the dog, named Killer, was friendly toward his neighbors.
"He just kind of walked up and down the neighborhood and didn't bother anybody," neighbor Jenine Edmunds said. "He was just a little house dog."