Noem defends decision to kill dog, saying she ‘was being a responsible parent, dog owner, and neighbor’

News & Politics

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem has defended her decision to kill a young dog many years ago.

The Guardian reported that in her forthcoming book, “No Going Back: The Truth on What’s Wrong with Politics and How We Move America Forward,” Noem recounted the story about the dog, Cricket, that had been around 14 months old.

According to the outlet, Noem recalled that she had taken the dog on a pheasant hunt with older canines, desiring to calm Cricket down and start to teach her how to act. But she was “out of her mind with excitement, chasing all those birds and having the time of her life.”

When Noem stopped to speak to a family after that hunt, the dog escaped from her truck and killed the family’s chickens, “grabb[ing] one chicken at a time, crunching it to death with one bite, then dropping it to attack another,” Noem recounted, according to the outlet. When she grabbed the canine, Cricket “whipped around to bite me,” she noted. Noem cut a check “for the price they asked, and helped them dispose of the carcasses littering the scene of the crime,” she reportedly indicated.

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“I hated that dog,” Noem noted, according to the Guardian, which reported that she described the dog as “untrainable,” “dangerous to anyone she came in contact with,” and “less than worthless … as a hunting dog.”

“I realised I had to put her down,” Noem recalled, according to the outlet. “It was not a pleasant job,” she noted, “but it had to be done.”

Noem’s story about killing the young dog sparked significant criticism, but she has defended her decision.

“I can understand why some people are upset about a 20 year old story of Cricket, one of the working dogs at our ranch, in my upcoming book — No Going Back,” she tweeted. “The fact is, South Dakota law states that dogs who attack and kill livestock can be put down. Given that Cricket had shown aggressive behavior toward people by biting them, I decided what I did,” she noted. “I followed the law and was being a responsible parent, dog owner, and neighbor.”

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