Troopers with Washington State Patrol are trying to find at least two people who allegedly threw two dogs from a moving vehicle Wednesday night.
Andrew Naidenov, 22, of Ridgefield witnessed the incident at the Northeast Padden Parkway onramp to northbound Interstate 205 and called police at 9:55 p.m.
He drove up behind a white four-door car that had slowed to 15 to 20 mph on the onramp, then saw the left rear door opened and two dogs forced out onto the shoulder.
“That was a shock to me,” he said. “I pressed on the horn and didn’t let go.”
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He said the car then took off at a high rate of speed.
“I considered trying to follow them, but I thought the dogs would probably go into forest and something would happen to them,” he said.
So he got out and found the two dogs, a tan male Chihuahua and tan female Cocker Spaniel, rolling on the ground. He opened the trunk of his vehicle and they both jumped inside. They were not injured.
Troopers responded, along with Critter-Gitter, a company that helps with animal control issues. They took the dogs to the Humane Society of Southwest Washington.
The dogs had collars but no tags. Troopers said that at this time, it is unknown if they had micro chips with owner information.
Naidenov told troopers there were at least two people in the car, one driving and one sitting in the back seat who tossed the dogs.
“I thought that was pretty heartless,” he said. “(The dogs) definitely seemed sweet … I wish they would have used Craigslist instead. Somebody would have taken these dogs.”
He described the car as possibly a mid to late 90s Ford Taurus with Washington plates that may have had three letters followed by four numbers. He could not provide a description of the occupants.
Naidenov said he doesn’t want to make assumptions about the people responsible, but said that “it was very, very poor decision.”
He said last year he found himself unable to give his Golden Retriever enough attention, working two jobs and going to school at Washington State University Vancouver, so he sold his pet on Craigslist.
“I think if (the people responsible) look back at this, they will see their mistake,” he said. “I hope they realize they could have gone about this a much easier and different way.”
“It’s just sad, it’s a terrible thing,” said Trooper Will Finn, spokesman for Washington State Patrol.
He said that even if pet owners get to a point where they can’t care for their animals anymore, “there are resources out there that folks can utilize.”
Finn said that the situation, however, could have been worse had the dogs darted into freeway traffic.
“There’s potential for other victims involved here,” he said.
Troopers are hopeful that someone will recognize the dogs and encourage anyone with information to call state patrol. Tips can be forwarded to Trooper Justin Maier, 360-449-7999.