SOUTH OGDEN -- Police are unsure who owns a pit bull that ran into a house Saturday and mauled a cat so badly it had to be euthanized.
Cat owners say their 13-year-old tabby Milo lost its teeth and several back claws, then bled severely throughout the room where it was attacked around 12:30 p.m., before he could be separated from the dog.
A veterinarian could not save the cat, and Milo had to be euthanized.
"My brother's friend said it was the most horrifying thing he had ever seen in his life," cat owner Emma Mauchley said of a 21-year-old man who was at her house on the 5500 South block of 750 East and witnessed the devastation.
Mauchley said her mother, Valerie Alder, has multiple sclerosis and is in a wheelchair.
"If she hadn't been out of the house at an appointment, who knows what would have happened."
"It just tore apart that cat," Alder said of the dog. "There was blood and fur. It was a mess in my house."
Nauchley, who is a married student at Weber State, but kept her cat at her parents' house, said she had to leave work at Joanne's in Riverdale to care for her animal and that the vet bill was $75.
"As a student, every penny counts," she said.
Mauchley said her brother and his friend were able to get the dog into the bathroom and call animal control officers.
South Ogden police spokeswoman Marci Edwards said the dog entered the home through a sliding glass door, which had been left open. Edwards confirmed that the dog had no tags or other identifying features.
She said if the dog's owners come forward, they will receive citations for allowing the dog to run at large. She said the dog will also receive a microchip.
Edwards said the dog owners would be given custody but the case would have to go through the courts.
Edwards said South Ogden police were taking a number of measures to locate the dog's owners, including calling other shelters and checking ads for missing pets.
If the owners don't come forward, she said, the dog will have to be evaluated to see if it is adoptable. So far, Edwards said, the dog has shown no sign of aggression at the shelter.
She said the South Ogden shelter is a "no kill" facility but she isn't sure what that would mean if it was determined that the dog is dangerous.
Alder said she lives in a quiet cul-de-sac and she has never had any problems with animals in her yard before. She said another of her cats was traumatized by what happened.
"She was so terrified that she didn't come home until after midnight," Alder said. "She's still terrified. It's just been a traumatic experience for the whole family."