Puppy shot in front of two Louisa children

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LOUISA, Va. – A puppy was shot in front of two children on Sunday, and the Louisa County Sheriff’s Office said that the neighbor was responsible.

"He came walking up to Jax and he shooted him," said siblings Ashley and Joey Anderson.

Seven- year-old Ashley, and 5-year-old Joey said their older sister Caitlin Cole ran outside their Mineral home after she heard gunfire.

"I thought that he probably shot at one of the kids because they were near the dogs," said Caitlin Cole, Jax's owner.  "He was just standing there dripping blood all down his leg, I didn't know what to do," added Cole.

Now, 24 hours later, bloodstains lined the driveway of the home, and Jax is at the veterinarian’s office for surgery. He will have a bullet removed from his leg.

The Louisa County Sheriff's office said a neighbor shot the one year old puppy.

Investigators said the neighbor claimed he was bitten while he was looking for one of his own dogs in the shared driveway between the two homes.

"He claims he was attacked by the neighbor’s pit bulls and during the attack he feared for his life and shot one of them," said Louisa County Sheriff Major Donnie Lowe. "The dog's owner says it happened in an entirely different location underneath the carport where there was children around.”

“We're still trying to determine where this happened, and where to go from this point on,” Lowe added. “We have to consult with the Commonwealth's Attorney about the possibility of charges." added Lowe.

The unidentified neighbor's father said he was getting treated for a minor injury to his hand Monday. He did not return WTVR's call for an interview.

"We did notice on his hand, he did have some surface wounds that did appear to be canine, nothing very serious," said Lowe.

He could face cruelty to animal and reckless use of a firearm charges.

"If he was in fear of his life the use of deadly force or shooting this dog would have been appropriate. However, if he wasn't in fear of his life and the dog was no threat to him or others then it's highly inappropriate and against the law to shoot that animal," said Lowe.

The family said they want justice for their puppy but claim their landlord is threatening to evict them for fear that their animals are a threat to the community.

This is a developing story.