MONROE COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — A man has been arrested after shooting his neighbor’s dog, Runt, last Friday.

“We heard a gunshot, so I took off running,” said Danielle Wilkerson, Runt’s owner. “When we got to the vet, he was spitting up blood and shaking and very scared.”

The shooting happened at Wilkerson’s home on Highway 136 in Excel while her cousin Alexis was there visiting.

“I grabbed him, and I brought him on the porch, and I grabbed a rag, and I was just holding pressure to his wounds,” said Alexis Reyes.

The bullet went into Runt’s right side, with an exit wound on his left.

“(The vet) said the entrance wound was on this side and it was intended to be a kill shot,” Wilkerson said. “It came out the front of his neck. He thinks he might have grazed his esophagus and that’s why he was spitting up blood, but it didn’t mess up anything internally thank God.”

Chief Mike West with the Excel Police Department (EPD) confirmed Runt was shot by neighbor, Daniel Lewis Dixon, near the property line.

“The dog was shot once by a 22-caliber round by the owner of the residence while the animal was on the shooter’s property,” a statement from the EPD read. “Our department has been in communication with all parties involved, and this case is still actively under investigation, pending applicable charges.”

Dixon has since been arrested, booked into the Monroe County Jail and charged with reckless endangerment, according to the EPD. The owners have been cited for allowing their dog to run at large, EPD said.

Runt has been doing a lot better this week, moving around a little easier, the owners said.

Danielle said the family pet of more than 12 years is lucky to be alive and she’s grateful for the care Runt received that night.

“That’s my little buddy,” Reyes said. “He’s the sweetest thing in the world. I’m just very lucky he’s still here and doing better.”

Runt will be carefully watched going forward, Reyes and Wilkerson said, so something like this doesn’t ever happen again.