LAKELAND, Fla. (FOX 13) - People in one Polk County neighborhood say loose dogs are terrorizing them, killing animals and making them feel like prisoners. Animal Control has responded to the area in Lakeland multiple times this year.
Six months ago, Don Mor and his wife adopted a Shetland pony named Tinkerbelle. She was 15 years old and blind, but his great-grandkids loved her.
"My oldest great-grandson, he rode her, he rode her around,” Mor said. “He don’t even know she's dead yet, I haven’t told him yet."
Wednesday morning, Don found Tinkerbelle dead in her pen, apparently mauled by dogs.
"In the throat, they took the throat right out of the horse," Mor said.
Mor and others in the area say they've been having issues with vicious dogs roaming the streets, killing livestock and pets.
In recent months, almost half of Peggy Campbell’s flock of backyard chickens has been killed.
"I'm not gonna get any more," she said.
Campbell said she feels like a prisoner on her property, afraid to leave her driveway because of the dogs. She said the attacks have only been getting worse.
"I'm even concerned not just for the chickens, I’m concerned coming out in the yard, and what if I had children, you know, the dogs like that they can even potentially -- I don’t know, it's just not a good feeling," Campbell said.
She and other neighbors want Animal Control to do more about the aggressive dogs, saying they're fed up.
"I think they better find out where your dog's at and tie it up, or either get rid of it or something because somebody's gonna kill that dog,” Mor said.
"Nobody wants to do that, but we also have our animals that we need to protect, so I just hope they get the message and do something," Campbell said.
FOX 13 News has learned at least two local dog owners have been cited and fined for not having tags on their dogs and for letting them roam. We're told the owners will also have to go before a judge.