ESTILL COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) -Estill County Search and Rescue is raising funds to replace “Hunter,” their search dog who was shot and killed after he got loose on Sunday.
The Estill County Rescue Squad said Hunter was last seen in the area of Redlick Road and Kissey Branch Road. A person who lives in the area told LEX 18 that they heard gunshots around the time the dog went missing.
Police charged 59-year-old Charles Collins with first-degree assault of a service animal and second-degree cruelty to animals.
An LEX 18 photographer working on the story found Hunter’s body.
The organization knows they will never truly replace Hunter, but they train another dog to help carry out search and rescue missions.
“Hunter was a certified Search and Rescue dog who was killed 1-6-2019. He was the only trained search dog Estill County Rescue Squad had. Hunter had several successful search and rescue missions in Estill County, he had also been called to other counties to help search for missing people. This fundraiser is to help raise funds for training, certifications, tracking equipment for the dogs and any other expenses with a new search and rescue dog.
We want to thank everyone for their support and kind messages during this difficult time. Hunter was more than just a service dog, he was a friend and companion,” reads a post on the gofundme page belonging to the organization.
If you would like to donate, click here.