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County investigating dog shootings

Authorities in Otter Tail County are investigating recent dog shootings.

The Otter Tail County Sheriff's office believes hunters may be shooting dogs mistaking them for coyotes or vicious animals.

The department is investigating at least four separate dog shootings that took place off of each dog owner's property, according to Chief Deputy Stacy Paulseth.

"There is a number of things going on this time of year," Paulseth told KSAX-TV. "One of them being coyote hunting."

In the most recent case on County Highway 59, deputies found a dog a mile away from the owner's home.

Paulseth warned residents to protect their dogs by keeping pets on their private property.

The manager at the Otter Tail County Humane Society also urged hunters and farmers to pause before shooting an animal.

Paulseth warned that just because a dog is on private property or near livestock doesn't mean someone has the legal right to shoot the animal. Offenders can receive anywhere from a misdemeanor to a felony charge depending on the incident.