Sheriff: 7-month-old chocolate pit bulldog accidentally dragged behind vehicle in Lancaster County

No charges will be filed against the owner of a 7-month-old chocolate pit bulldog after deputies said she accidentally dragged the dog behind her vehicle earlier this month in Lancaster. 

The incident occurred around 6 p.m. Sunday, May 5 in the area of Great Falls Highway and Airport Road. 

As deputies arrived at the scene, they found a woman and the seriously injured puppy. The woman had been flagged down by other drivers and had stopped. The dog had been tied to the back of the vehicle and had been dragged behind it.

Animal Control responded and took the puppy to the Lancaster County Animal Shelter. 

It was determined through an investigation that the driver was at home with her children and other family that day and their puppy is a family pet that they had raised since birth. A storm was approaching and the woman's 11-year-old child had taken the dog from the back yard where it was normally kept and tied its tether to the hitch on the back of the vehicle under the carport without his mother's knowledge. 

The woman told deputies she had received a phone call that another family member had been involved in a car accident and she had gotten into her vehicle to go to the scene of the crash. She reportedly drove off with the puppy attached to the back of the vehicle and stopped when other drivers let her know what was happening. 

The sheriff's office said the woman was asked to take a polygraph examination and did so. She did not indicate deception when asked whether she knew the dog was tied to the back of her vehicle when she drove off. "Because the driver did not know the dog was tethered to the vehicle and did not intentionally cause harm to the dog, no charges will be made against her," deputies said. 

The dog was surrendered by the driver, received extensive veterinary treatment, and survived its injuries. He was ultimately transferred to an out-of-state animal rescue organization.