Owner of Dogs That Killed Black Lab Is Arrested In Oxford, Connecticut

Lab killed by two dogs

Owners of a mauled dog say they are happy the owner of the other dogs is finally taking responsibility.

The owner of four large Newfoundland dogs that mauled and killed a smaller Labrador Retriever at a Connecticut park last week has been arrested.

Vicaie Tkacz (pronounced Vicky Kach), 37, of Oxford, Connecticut turned herself in to the Oxford Resident Trooper’s Office on Friday. She was charged with two counts of failure to quarantine, obstruction of an investigation by an animal control officer, four counts of a roaming dog and four counts of a nuisance dog.

Police said on Tuesday night, her four dogs were being walked by teenagers who had trouble controlling the dogs. Pat Severson, 20, meanwhile was walking his 11-year-old black Labrador Retriever, “Roxy,” when at least two of the Newfoundland dogs attacked them. Severson said he has bruises on his hands from hitting the dogs, trying to make them stop mauling Roxy, and was bit by one of the dogs. He is taking rabies shots as a precaution.

Pat Severson’s father, Jim Severson, said the family had been upset that the dog owner was evading her responsibilities by not turning herself into police.

“We’re pleased she is now doing the responsible thing, and whatever situation she has caused, she’s going to have to deal with it now, and we’re hopeful justice will be served,” he said. “We’re dealing with a personal loss here and this doesn’t change that. But I’m glad she came to her senses and is taking care of the things she should have been taking care of all along.”

All four of the Newfoundland dogs, which Tkacz breeds, have been quarantined and are being held at the Oxford Animal Control office.

Oxford Resident Trooper Sgt. Dan Semosky said the case is now closed. He gives credit not only to his office but also the Oxford and state animal control offices for their help.?He said the office has had other complaints about Tkacz and her dogs, but never one this extreme.

“This is a very sad case,” he said.

Tkacz has been released on a $5,000 bond and is scheduled to be arraigned on August 18.

Story by Elaine Furst for Dog Files


  1. Bookworm9211 says

    This is the weirdest story I’ve ever heard.  Newfies do not attack and kill other dogs.  They are as gentle and harmless as a lab, if not more so.  These were either abused dogs or dogs raised for dog fighting.   

  2. NotashrinkingViolet says

    In a case like this… or any case of mauling… I think the owner should be charged and the dogs sent for assessment and rehabilitation…  Newfies are a wonderful breed, but any dog can become a problem if the owner isn’t good!

  3. Cjustpeachie says

    I’m so sorry for the black lab Roxy and her family!!  I just don’t understand Newfy’s attacking like that….they are generally extremely  gentle!! 

  4. Cindy says

    I was really surprised when I read the story further and realized it was Newfies who did this. It just seems so out of character for this breed, but any dog improperly trained, improperly socialized and mistreated can become an aggressor. We have a rescue who is unpredictable. We put him in a soft muzzle during any situation we think may be risky. It is for his protection just as much as the publics. We are trtying to work with him and rehabilitate him and don’t want to see him put down because we failed to take proper precautions. So sorry to the family that lost their dog Roxy.

  5. Angelhimm says

    Its never the breed of the dog, but the owner who is the problem. I groom dogs for a living for the last 12 years, and it doesn’t matter whether its a small Yorkie or a large Newfie dog….its how the owner trains them, that makes them become aggressive. I hope this owner of the Newfie’s is charged to the fullest. She should have never had a young teenager trying to control the dogs on their walk. It takes at least 3-4 people to walk all those dogs. My heart goes out to Roxy, she was in the wrong place at the wrong time….BAD DOG OWNERS breed bad dogs…!!

  6. Sheiladixon13 says

    I just read a article on Yahoo that says that the Newfoundland dogs can or will be aggressive towards other Male dogs.  Other than that they are gentle dogs.

  7. dogwhisperer says

    Stories like this horrible murder of this beautiful lab stop me from taking my dog to the park for fear that she will be killed by an aggressive dog owned by someone who should not have pets.  My heart goes out to Roxy and her family.

  8. pamorama says

    This is such a tragic story that DID NOT have to happen. Newfies are a lot of dog, period, and 4 should never be walked by two teenagers. I am challenged walking my two English Springer Spaniels and I’m an adult who has owned dogs all my life. PLUS, if these dogs have this sort of temperament, they should NOT be bred. There was no reason for them to maul that dog and her owner. I hope that we hold owners more responsible for their pets. This is the only way to at least avoid most of these sorts of tragedies.

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