Date: Thursday, June 20, 2024 

File: 24-21181 

Victoria, BC – A decision to dispatch an aggressive dog was made early Monday morning, after it lunged at an officer during an arrest in the 500-block of Ellice Street. 

At approximately 3:30 a.m. on June 17, VicPD Patrol officers were in the 500-block of Ellice Street conducting routine patrols, when they saw a man who had outstanding warrants for his arrest. While arresting the man, a dog emerged from a nearby tent and lunged aggressively towards a male officer. The officer moved away and was chased by the dog. Fearing serious injury, he discharged his firearm, killing the dog.  

Officers later learned the dog was at least six years old and was designated as dangerous, requiring it to be muzzled and leashed at all times in public places and common private property, with signage advising that a dangerous dog is present. None of these requirements were met at the time of this incident. Victoria Animal Control confirmed that since 2021, there have been 11 other incidents involving this dog, including two occurrences where Bylaw officers were injured by bites.  

These facts are contrary to recent media reports that the dog was shot by a female officer, was only one year old and was muzzled at the time of the incident. It is also important to note that less lethal options such as OC spray or pepper spray are not always effective on dogs and, given that the officer feared serious injury (grievous bodily harm), the threshold was met for lethal force. 

An on-duty officer with the Integrated Canine Service attended to provide medical aid to the dog, but it unfortunately succumbed to its injuries. The dog was transported to a local veterinary hospital by police and was cremated as per the owner’s wishes.  

We recognize the loss of a pet is devastating under any circumstance and that people may feel strongly about the outcome of this incident. This is not a decision any officer wants to make, or an outcome anyone would have wished for. However, it is also important to correct misinformation surrounding the incident. The safety and security of the community and our officers is our priority, and we have full confidence in the decision made by the officer involved.