The dog carcass was the result of a taxidermist improperly dumping remains and is not connected to a recent spate of cat mutilations.

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The carcass of a skinned dog found Friday near Olympia has no connection to a recent spate of cat mutilations and was instead the result of a routine taxidermy project mishandled, according to the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office.

A couple walking near the Nisqually River found the dog carcass, skinned and with its tail cut off, Friday evening at a fishing area that belongs to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Thurston County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Tim Rudloff said Monday. Authorities said at the time they didn’t know whether the killing could be linked to the 13 mutilated cats¬†found in Thurston County this year.

On Wednesday, the Sheriff’s Office said it had concluded its investigation and determined the remains belonged to a “beloved family pet” — a large Bernese mountain dog — that had been “legally and ethically euthanized” and given to a taxidermist to be mounted.

The taxidermist disposed of the dog’s body in a wooded area and was “not aware of the recent cat mutilation cases and how the community was at a [heightened] sense of concern,” the release said. The Sheriff’s Office said the taxidermist¬†usually takes carcasses “deep, deep into the woods, but he did a shortcut this time.”

The Sheriff’s Office does not intend to seek charges against the taxidermist, who Rudloff said was terminally ill. Detectives continue to investigate the cat mutilations.