Dogs & Laws

Missing 16 Year Old Dog Euthanized by the Shelter Just 3 Hours After Being Found

A Michigan dog owner is devastated and angry after his 16 year old dog, Capone, escaped from home, only to be found and euthanized just three short hours later.

16 year old dog euthanized

Capone was euthanized less than 3 hours after being found.

Serafin Montoya’s 16 year old pit bull, Capone, escaped from his Fenton, Michigan home. Shortly after his escape, he was found by good Samaritan and dog-lover, Todd MacDonell, who set out to find his rightful owner.

MacDonell scooped the old dog into his truck and visited two different veterinarians and to Adopt-a-Pet in Fenton, hoping to locate the dog’s family. Because Capone was not wearing an ID tag and was not microchipped, no one could help.

So, MacDonell posted a photo of the dog to a Facebook page for lost pets in the area and took him to the Genesee County Animal Control Shelter where he was told the dog would be safely held until his owner claimed him.

Within just 3 hours of posting his photo, Capone’s owner was found. But it was too late.

The Genessee County Animal Control Shelter had already euthanized the senior dog.

Shelter director Paul Wallace told ABC12 News they didn’t have a choice but to euthanize the 16-year-old dog named Capone.

“That was mercy for the dog,” Wallace said.

The veterinarian on staff said Capone was extremely frail with partial paralysis in his hind legs. The nerves in his spine apparently couldn’t function, causing excruciating pain. Wallace said the dog was screaming in pain when he was brought in, a statement that the man who found him denies.

It is standard protocol to hold a found dog for at least 7 days.

The good Samaritan that found Capone is, of course, upset by what happened and says if he’d been wearing a collar or had been microchipped, he would have contact the owner directly instead of going to the county shelter.



  1. Kathleen O'Brien

    Jun 27, 2017 at 3:28 am

    I know this won't bring your beautiful baby back but I would sue the arse of these sadistic bastards they had no rights to put this baby down take it to the highest court and get this place closed down this breaks my heart

  2. DeeAnn Remlinger

    Jun 26, 2017 at 11:25 am

    This was so wrong and so unfair to the dog and the dogs owner. This shelter should be fully investigated so that another poor dog is put down while the owner desperately searches for him. I am so sad for the owner and the dog. Please accept my condolances.

  3. Bruce

    Jun 26, 2017 at 11:07 am

    They probably put the dog down, not because he was in pain, but because he was a senior dog

  4. Doris Farina

    Jun 16, 2017 at 8:52 am

    Wow, that's terrible! I would find the person responsible for this dirty deed and make sure they are punished to the fullest extent! This poor puppy died for no reason. If the procedure calls to hold the dog for 7 days then that puppy at least deserved for the people to follow the procedure. What a shame!!! Some people have no regard for other people's feelings!!!!

    • Rosemarie Roman

      Jun 26, 2017 at 11:18 am

      You're right they were wrong they shouldn't have done that and they're making up lies they have to give a dog at least 7 to 10 days they have no remorse for these dogs why even have a shelter they just didn't want to deal with him how sad

  5. Ruth

    Jun 16, 2017 at 2:34 am

    Suing won't bring Cape back but I still would if it was me

  6. Skippysmom

    Jun 16, 2017 at 2:06 am

    I hope the owner or someone who knows the owner can give him this info. He/she needs to contact The Lexus Project. They help dog owners with this type of situation. Sad. Why not give the dog's owner a chance to come get their dog. If that happened here, the shelter would be in trouble. We have a law here called The Hayden Act. every state needs this law.

  7. Judy Hynes

    Jun 15, 2017 at 7:13 pm

    This is so wrong in so many ways . That baby should have been held on stray hold ..that is the law . I hope that owner is all over them like a spider monkey

  8. Kat

    Jun 15, 2017 at 7:04 pm

    Another really good reason to chip your pets. I have 14 cats…all chipped and on a wellness plan at my vet. The girls there know each one of my cats by name because they visit twice a year. But I can't stress more for chipping your pet. This dog should not have been euthanized for a minimum of 72 hours. There is morphine for pain so that was a lame excuse. So many animals go missing in my city. Some habitually but the owners do not take it seriously because someone always finds them. Please chip your pets. It's cheap, easy, and painless and your pet has permanent identification as long as you keep it current. I also chipped my horses. Please for their sake and your peace of mind.

  9. Coby

    Jun 15, 2017 at 5:43 pm

    Oh man, I would be taking this case to the highest levels. This is wrong. I bet the so called "shelter" is lying about the dog being in pain. He was only lost for a few hours and the person that found him said he was not. So wrong on so many levels and that poor dog deserves to spend his remaining time at home, happy and loved.

  10. Lewis

    Jun 15, 2017 at 4:43 pm

    I'm absolutely disgusted to hear this. Yes, dog should have been chipped , mine are , but 3 hours. Fuck Them.

  11. Ellie

    Jun 15, 2017 at 12:49 pm

    That's just wrong. The owner should sue

    • Tish

      Jun 15, 2017 at 4:20 pm

      Wow!! They're just trying to cover their butt! That's just horrible …,

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