WILLOUGHBY, OH (WOIO) - A local family is devastated after someone shot and killed their small dog.
The McLaughlin family can't believe they lost their dog, Molly, after someone shot her with a pellet gun in their Willoughby neighborhood.
They want to make sure the person who did it is held accountable and never hurts another animal.
"They're best buddies. They like to run around and sun themselves in the yard," said Michael McLaughlin.
But their group of three is down to two after they lost their 6-year-old puggle.
On Friday afternoon, Michael was outside with Molly when she got out of their yard on Garden Road. About 20 minutes later, she came back in poor shape with blood on her side.
"I bathed her. Still, she wasn't acting right. So I threw her in the hamper and we took her to an emergency vet," he said.
The veterinarian pointed out a small hole in Molly's side and said a pellet pierced her spleen and lower intestine.
There was nothing they could do. Molly was put to sleep a day later.
"There was a whole lot of tears going on, not only by myself, but my whole family," he said.
The McLaughlins' initial shock and sadness has since turned to anger.
"I'm hoping that it was just a child, someone that was just screwing around shooting a can, and a ricochet took him. If it was an accident, I understand. But to think that someone actually walked up to a 28-pound puggle, 'pow' and shot it, that's just wrong," he said.
Their dogs keep waiting in the driveway for Molly's return. Meanwhile, it's the little things their family misses.
"There was a lot more room in the bed last night -- and that's when you miss her," McLaughlin said.
Molly was a rescue dog the McLaughlins took in from a soldier who deployed years ago. They had her for five years.
Willoughby Police say they have spoken with neighbors and don't have any witnesses or leads yet. If you have any information, call police at (440) 953-4212.