Society

Hospice Therapy Dog Shot In Owner's Yard

| by Dominic Kelly

A beloved therapy dog is fighting for his life after randomly being shot in his owner’s backyard overnight.

Barney Fife, a four-year-old English bulldog, visits hospice patients in York, Pa. Barney’s owner, Bill Buckingham, says he let the dog out in the yard briefly around 3:30 a.m. on Monday.

“I heard a ‘thunk’ and a yelp (but) I’m not thinking anybody’s going to shoot my dog,” said Buckingham. After bringing Barney inside, Buckingham says he held him on his lap and began to pet him, and when he looked down, he noticed his hand was covered in the dog’s blood.

“I knew it was a gunshot wound right away,” said Buckingham, a former police officer. “It was just hard to believe what I was looking at, because it’s not supposed to happen here.”

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After bringing Barney to the vet, he was told that the bullet would have to remain inside of him because surgery was too invasive. He was given antibiotics, but days later, Barney was back at the vet because his condition had gotten worse.

Police are now actively searching for a suspect and are asking for the public’s help. Barney is, at least for the time being, no longer providing services for hospice patients.