Blind and deaf dog Teddy got lost in a neighbor’s yard. Police called to help him shot him dead

A police officer shot dead a tiny blind and dead dog in Missouri and now thousands are demanding the cop lose his job over the incident.

Teddy, a 13-pound Shih Tzu, was in Sturgeon, Missouri, when officers were called to a reported injured animal on Sunday. Five-year-old Teddy was born deaf, but had only lost his sight of him around two years ago, his owner said.

Police body cam footage showed an officer – identified by local media as Myron Woodson – chasing Teddy around a large field and making several unsuccessful attempts to catch him. The City of Sturgeon later claimed the officer believed Teddy had been “infected with rabies.”

“Based on the behavior exhibited by the dog, believing the dog to be severely injured or infected with rabies, and as the officer feared being bitten and being infected with rabies, the SPD officer felt that his only option was to put the animal down, ” a post on the City’s Facebook read.

The officer’s decision sparked fury online with people taking to the small town’s Facebook page to describe the local police as a “joke”, as well as “disgusting and disappointing” after attempting to justify the officer’s actions.

Officials, after just four days, determined the officer was not wrong in his actions.

Teddy a 13-pound disabled Shih Tzu was shot dead by a police officer – as the internet is now demanding the cop’s resignation (Nicholas Hunter/KOMU)

It was later learned that Teddy’s behavior was due to the fact that he was both deaf and blind.

Responding to the City’s explanation of the incident, many social media users piled in. “UNACCEPTABLE!!!!! Sturgeon Police force is seriously a joke,” one user wrote. Another went further, writing: “This is a disgrace. The officer involved needs to be immediately removed from duty and charged with criminal animal abuse.

“I pray the owner sues the city, the mayor, the officer and the department. I will be filing a complaint with the State Attorney General’s Office. The entire city council should resign after hiring this man.”

Officer Woodson had shot the animal in order to “protect against possible injury to citizens,” another Facebook post from the City read. Outraged citizens once again blasted the force and authorities.

“What a disgusting and disappointing response to abuse of power and neglect of an animal,” wrote one person.

“If it’s ‘within his authority’ to shoot a dog who is not a clear threat to anyone then no person or animal is safe in our town. “I am so beyond disappointed in this city,” said another.

The officer who shot Teddy, believed he was infected with rabies. His behavior was due to the fact that he was deaf and blind (City of Sturgeon / Facebook)

Bodycam footage released by the Sturgeon Police Department showed the moments before the defenseless animal was shot.

Officer Woodson is seen getting out of his car and putting on black plastic gloves. Over the course of the next three minutes he attempts to capture Teddy, who is walking around the field – his head slightly lopsided – something that the officer believes to indicate that the dog’s neck is broken.

“Come on baby, we’re gonna take you to get help,” he is heard to say, before Teddy once again wriggles out of the capture pole.

It is not known what caused officer Woodson’s attitude to change, but moments later a shot is heard to ring out. The graphic part of the footage has been redacted.

In response to the City’s second statement, another social media user added: “That dog was injured and confused, not rabid. He wasn’t even barking or being aggressive. He didn’t even yelp when the catch pole was put on him. “I am just in shock over this.”

Others questioned the caliber of officers being hired in Sturgeon, with one person writing: “If your officers are that afraid of a little dog wandering around… maybe, just maybe, they shouldn’t be police officers.”

According to his owner, Nicholas Hunter, despite Teddy’s lack of sight or hearing, he was full of life. On the day of the incident he had escaped from his kennel and his collar had slipped off.

In a video shared with ABC 17 News by Mr Hunter, showed his encounter with officer Woodson, although the topic of rages is never stated.

Mr Hunter said Teddy was up to date on all of his shots, including rages.

“The officer was going strictly based off the fact that the dog walks with his head sideways due to him being deaf and blind,” he said.

Mr Hunter told ABC 17 that he had already filed a lawsuit against the city, and that despite the City’s statement on Facebook, he had not been personally contacted by the mayor’s office. He said that the statement had “contradicted everything” that he had previously spoken about with officer Woodson.

The Independent has reached out to the City of Sturgeon for response to their findings and online statements.