Devastated by dogs’ death

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A Mataura couple have been left devastated after two of their family pets were taken, shot and left on a river bank.
Dave MacKenzie and Rochelle Weller have been left bewildered, concerned and deeply saddened after Monty, a 4-year-old English pointer, and Bear, an 18-month-old red kelpie, were found by two duckshooters on Thursday evening lying dead on the banks of the Mataura River.
The dogs still had their collars and registration details on them, the couple said.
The dogs went missing on Wednesday, June 1. The last time they were seen was between 9.30am and 10am that morning.
The couple have lived on their lifestyle block in north Kana St for three years and were vigilant about keeping the dogs on their property.
The dogs lived an idyllic life, having the run of well-fenced paddocks.
‘‘They pretty much had free range of the whole property,’’ Mr Mackenzie said.
Monty was Mr MacKenzie’s prized duck dog. However, Monty only had one hunting outing this season because Mr MacKenzie had broken his foot.
Bear was the best friend of Mr MacKenzie’s 8-year-old son Rae.
‘‘It’s gutting,’’ Ms Weller said.
The couple said they would have understood if the dogs had got out and were worrying stock and had to be killed but the way the pets were killed was chilling.
The killing was cowardly and unthinking, as those who discovered the dogs were also affected by the act, Mr MacKenzie said.
The couple want to find out who killed the dogs and why.
‘‘We want the truth,’’ Ms Weller said.
The killing of the dogs had prompted the community to rally round, with people sending texts and neighbours showing support.
Constable Nathan Wootten, of Mataura, is calling for any information relating to the dogs’ disappearance and death.
Const Wootten said the owners had walked the boundary fences of their property and could not find anywhere the dogs could have got out.
He said two duck-shooters had found the dogs.
‘‘They had been shot.’’
Why the dogs had been taken was a mystery as they were not breeds used for fighting, he said. – If anyone has any information they can call the Gore or Mataura police stations.