Maryville family's dog viciously beaten and killed

Maryville family's dog viciously beaten and killed

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The Del Rio family with Dozer. (Source: Del Rio family) The Del Rio family with Dozer. (Source: Del Rio family)
The dog was beat to death in the yard while Del Rio was away. The dog was beat to death in the yard while Del Rio was away.
Another image of Dozer. (Source: Del Rio family) Another image of Dozer. (Source: Del Rio family)
"It's kind of scary to know that we've got someone in our area that's capable of doing that," said Tavish Del Rio. "It's kind of scary to know that we've got someone in our area that's capable of doing that," said Tavish Del Rio.

By DREW GARDNER
6 News Reporter

MARYVILLE (WATE) - A Maryville family is searching for answers after their family dog was viciously beaten and killed.

It happened Wednesday afternoon while the dog was tied up in the family's back yard in the Willow Pond subdivision.

Tavish Del Rio left his 18-month-old Great Dane, Dozer, tied up while he and a friend worked on his truck.

It was after coming back from a 15 minute test drive around 3:30 p.m. that he made the grim discovery.

"He was beat bad," said Del Rio. "It looked like his jaw was broken and his skull had been crushed in a little bit. The entire left side of his body had gashes and wounds all over it from his head to his tail."

It's believed Dozer was killed instantly by one of the blows to his head.

Del Rio, his family, and the neighborhood are now left wondering who would do something like this.

"It's kind of scary to know that we've got someone in our area that's capable of doing that," said Del Rio.

Del Rio says Dozer was typically an inside dog and spent very little time out on his leash.

"We got Dozer when he was five weeks old and he slept in our bed every night."

But Del Rio says when he did encounter his neighbors, he was always making friends.

"If anybody ever called him aggressive in any way, I would say he was aggressive in forcing his love on people," Del Rio added. "People that didn't like dogs, he would pin them down and lay on their lap and just love them 'til they loved him back."

The family hopes now someone with information will come forward and hopefully prevent something like this from ever happening again.

Del Rio's mother is offering a $500 reward for the arrest and prosecution of those responsible.

If you have any information, you can call the Blount County Sheriff's Office's 24-hour crime hotline at 865-273-5200.

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