Dog mauled, killed by pit bull at PetSmart during grooming appointment

A Pennsylvania family is mourning the loss of their dog after it was mauled to death during a grooming session at a local PetSmart.

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Betty Miller told WNEP that she dropped off her 12-year-old dog named Brewster at a PetSmart location in Dickson City.

Later that day, Miller received a call that her beloved bichon had been transported to an animal hospital after it was attacked by another dog, a pit bull. Brewster died before he arrived at the hospital, WNEP reported.

“I felt so guilty the day it happened because we would say to him, ‘You want to go bye-bye?’ And he’d hop in that car, and he didn’t know it was going to be his last ride,” Miller told the news station. “It was hard, very, very hard. He’s been with us for 12 years.”

Miller described Brewster as loving, gentle and funny.

“He loved everyone,” Miller said.

While details about the incident remain unclear, Miller said her dog was “bait” for the pit bull.

"Why would you want to bring a pit bull past a small dog who's really just bait?" she said, according to WNEP.

PetSmart officials offered a statement in defense of the incident:

“We are truly saddened by the loss of Brewster. The health, safety and well-being of the pets in our care is our top priority, and we immediately launched an internal investigation to better understand what led to this tragic accident. We have high standards of care in place and are actively gathering more information to determine any policy or procedural violations. We welcome all dogs, regardless of their breed, into our grooming salons provided they are well-behaved.”