"[The dog] began to chase it. It was at that time that the dog was injured by the mountain goat," Cannon said. "The owner reports that her dog was not seriously injured and is recovering."
Cannon said that allowing the dog off the leash was not technically illegal, but allowing it to chase protected wildlife is a misdemeanor under Utah County Code.
Still, there are no plans to file charges at this time, he added.
The mother of the dog owner called Utah County dispatchers at 5:15 p.m. Sunday to report her daughter and dog had just been attacked by the mountain goat. She wanted county search and rescue to respond, but was told search and rescue missions are limited to humans.
Besides, Cannon said, in this particular case it would have taken several hours to reach the dog and bring it down the mountain.
"The primary concern is that another call for assistance involving people in a different area may come in while the rescue is in process. In that case rescuers needed for the new call would be delayed, or may even be unable to respond," Cannon explained.
Indeed, within two hours of the woman's call, search and rescue workers scrambled to help rescue a family of five from a disabled boat on Mud Lake. It took four hours to carry out that mission.
The dog owner was able to coax her pet down the trail and took it to a veterinarian for treatment of a kick to the chest.