Aspen Shumpert / The Peninsula Gateway
An outdoor vacation activity turned into tragedy for one Gig Harbor woman.
Maverick, Vyctoria Sanchez’s 9-month-old dog, was reportedly electrocuted and died Friday night while viewing the Christmas lights at the Washington State Fair, Q13 reported.
According to Q13, Maverick was a service dog in training.
“Words cannot describe the brokenness, helplessness, anger and sadness I feel,” Sanchez said in a social media post on Saturday.
Maverick started howling when Sanchez, her friend and the dog were near an inflatable, hideous snowman at the fairgrounds, Q13 reported.
“I’ve never heard a sound like that,” Sanchez told Q13. “He cried and pleaded and fell down.”
The Washington State Fair sent this statement to the Gateway on Tuesday afternoon:
“Our hearts go out to the owner who lost her dog at our Holiday Magic event on Friday night. After investigating the circumstances of this tragic incident, we found the source underground. We have extensively reviewed the terrain and added additional enhanced security measures. to ensure the safety of our guests and employees. After the incident, we did everything we could on the spot to help and comfort the dog owner. We also called in a police chaplain from Puyallup to speak to her. Also, we’ve been in touch with her since the incident. As always, safety is our top priority.”
The spokesman for the fair added that the source where the incident occurred has been shut down for the remainder of the event and is no longer live. A review of Holiday Magic’s footprint revealed no other safety issues.
Sanchez did not immediately respond to the gateway’s requests for comment.
Sanchez told Q13 that her friend was electrocuted before Maverick, a German shepherd mix that Sanchez recently adopted, was electrocuted.
“He fell to the ground and started crying for me to help him and then the staff at the fair immediately called medics to get there because he wasn’t moving. He just cried. And I wanted so much to help him,” Sanchez told Q13. “They gave him a child’s oxygen mask and about three minutes later they said he didn’t make it.”
Sanchez told Q13 she believes the show should have done more to ensure all areas of the facility are safe before opening their event to the public.
“It was a huge safety hazard and they didn’t even realize it until my dog was dead,” Sanchez said.
Sanchez told Q13 she never wants to go back to the fair.
“It could have been a child. It could have been someone’s family, and it took my dog to come by for them to realize that there was a part that was totally uncared for in their area,” Sanchez said.