Beth Lutz has been raising alpacas at Painted Spring Farm Alpacas in York County for 18 years.
“They all have their own personalities. Most of the animals on this farm we have raised since they were babies. So there’s a long bond,” said Lutz.
Which makes what happened last Friday all the more devastating.
Lutz says her husband was downstairs making coffee that morning when he looked out and saw several alpacas lying in the pasture, a behavior she says is not typical.
So, he walked outside to see what was going on.
“He came running back to the house and was yelling for me and said, ‘There’s three or four dead alpacas in the pasture.’ I just couldn’t even understand what he was saying,” said Lutz.
A neighbor’s rottweiler dog escaped from his home and attacked several male alpacas, ultimately killing four of them, and seriously injuring a fifth.
“Amazingly enough, he was able to get the dog to come to him and he just led it by it’s collar. So, he just put it in a safe place the barn. I called the cops because I didn’t know who else to call and they were able to see that the dogs had tags and a license, so they were able to find the owner,” said Lutz.
Zachary Allen Neiman was issued three citations— two related to confining the dog, which is punishable by a monetary fine.
The third is for harboring a dangerous dog.
If found guilty, Neiman will need to meet a number of requirements in order to keep the dog.
Lt. Gregg Anderson with the Northern York County Regional Police Department, tells Fox 43 it is likely Neiman’s dog will fall into that category.
“It’s just sadness when I think about how the animals must have suffered and I’m sad for the loss,” said Lutz.
But Lutz says she holds no ill will towards Neiman.
“I don’t think this was a fault of anyone. It was a terrible accident. And I want to say I forgive him, but I don’t think there’s anything to forgive because I think it was an accident,” said Lutz.
There end of the week did have a bit of a happy ending, though.
Thursday morning, the mother of one of the alpacas that was killed gave birth to a “macho’, a baby male alpaca.
Beth tells us it was nice to have something to smile about after a rough week.