Dixie, a year-and-a-half old husky, is pictured. A truck with a snowplow on it hit and killed Dixie on Thursday. (Courtesy Photo | Emily Carrillo)

Dixie, a year-and-a-half old husky, is pictured. A truck with a snowplow on it hit and killed Dixie on Thursday. (Courtesy Photo | Emily Carrillo)

Truck plowing snow hits, kills dog

Plow wasn’t a city plow, driver still unknown

Thursday evening started out as a joyous one for Emily Carrillo’s family.

Her kids were out playing as snow fell on the Mendenhall Valley, and their year-and-a-half-old Siberian husky Dixie was out with them. Dixie was excitedly running around, Carrillo said, and ventured into Riverside Drive at just after 6 p.m.

A dark pickup truck drove up the road at that point, Carrillo said, with its snowplow down. With the record amount of snow that fell Thursday, the truck was plowing the road. The truck approached quickly, and one of Carrillo’s children was calling for Dixie to get back.

Carrillo said it appeared that the truck actually sped up as it approached, hit Dixie and kept driving. It had been dark for hours at that point, and the driver might not even have seen the small dog. Dixie took her last breath at 6:23 p.m., Carrillo said. The family buried her on private property Saturday afternoon. Carrillo’s children wrote messages on Dixie’s small wooden coffin, which was made by Juneau residents Jeffrey and Salissa Thole. Inside the coffin were dog bones, a photo of the family and a tennis ball.

“It’s pretty heartbreaking,” Carrillo said via Facebook Messenger. “She was part of our family.”

A post of Carrillo’s on the Juneau Community Collective Facebook page made the rounds in the community over the next couple days, spurring people to post videos of plows going quickly and sharing their own thoughts on the situation. Carrillo said she heard that a plow hit another dog in the area Thursday, but the Juneau Police Department and Animal Control only got Carrillo’s report.

The plow did not belong to the city. The City and Borough of Juneau’s Street and Fleets Department is responsible for plowing Riverside Drive, but Streets and Fleets Director Ed Foster said CBJ plows were taking a break between 4-8 p.m. Thursday. Carrillo’s family reported it to the JPD and called Animal Control to learn what their burial options are.

Animal Control Officer Karen Wood spoke with the family, but only briefly. Wood said it’s fairly common for loose dogs to wander into the street and get hit, but it’s less common for snowplows to hit them. She said this is the second instance in the past two years of this happening, but it’s generally quite rare.

Wood said it’s tempting to want to blame the driver, but she said that if a driver swerves to avoid a loose pet in the street, the owner can actually be held liable for damage or a crash that happens. Wood said a driver can be cited, however, if they hit an animal and don’t report it.

It’s fairly rare that a driver reports it, she said, and even more unlikely that Animal Control is able to determine who the driver was if the driver doesn’t report it.

“Most of the time, the person’s not at fault,” Wood said, “but it’s a $75 fine if they don’t report it and we find out who they are. It’s not something we often cite people for.”


• Contact reporter Alex McCarthy at 523-2271 or amccarthy@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @akmccarthy.


Emily Carrillo’s daughter writes a message to Dixie, the family dog who died after being hit by a truck plowing snow on Thursday. (Courtesy Photo | Emily Carrillo)

Emily Carrillo’s daughter writes a message to Dixie, the family dog who died after being hit by a truck plowing snow on Thursday. (Courtesy Photo | Emily Carrillo)

More in Home

TJ Beers holds a sign to advocate for the rights of people experiencing homelessness outside the state Capitol on April 9. Beers was homeless for four years and in three states. “I don’t know how I survived,” he said. (Claire Stremple/Alaska Beacon)
Lawmakers weigh whether to reduce or acknowledge rights of growing Alaska homeless population

As cities try to house people, Dunleavy’s protest bill would further criminalize them, advocates say.

Juneau Assembly members and other visitors examine a meeting room formerly used by the nine-member Alaska State Board of Education and Early Development on Monday, April 8, which is about 25% larger than the Assembly Chambers at City Hall. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Of three possible new City Hall buildings, one stands out — but plenty of proposed uses for other two

Michael J. Burns Building eyed as city HQ; childcare, animal shelter among options at school sites.

The sky and mountains are reflected in the water on April 5, 2012, at the Kootznoowoo Wilderness in the Tongass National Forest’s Admiralty Island National Monument. Conservation organizations bought some private land and transferred it to the U.S. Forest Service, resulting in an incremental expansion of the Kootznoowoo Wilderness and protection of habitat important to salmon and wildlife. (Photo by Don MacDougall/U.S. Forest Service)
Conservation groups’ purchase preserves additional land in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest

A designated wilderness area in Southeast Alaska’s Tongass National Forest, the largest… Continue reading

A welcome sign is shown Sept. 22, 2021, in Tok. President Joe Biden won Alaska’s nominating contest on Saturday. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
Biden wins more delegates in Alaska and Wyoming as he heads toward Democratic nomination

President Joe Biden nudged further ahead in the Democratic nomination for reelection… Continue reading

The Boney Courthouse in downtown Anchorage, across the street from the larger Nesbett Courthouse, holds the Alaska Supreme Court chambers. (Yereth Rosen/Alaska Beacon)
Alaska judge strikes down state’s cash payments to families using correspondence school programs

Decision will become a ‘hot-button legislative item’ in final weeks of session, lawmakers say.

Senate President Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak, speaks to members of the Senate majority caucus’ leadership group on Friday. (James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)
Schools, university and projects across Alaska are set to receive money from new budget bill

Alaska Senate sends draft capital budget to House as work continues on a state spending plan

A fenced lot proposed as a campsite for people experiencing homelessness located next to the city’s cold weather emergency shelter, in the background, is also next door to a businesses where extensive construction is scheduled, thus prompting city leaders to rethink the proposal. (Photo by Laurie Craig)
Indefinite ‘dispersed camping’ for homeless proposed by city leaders due to lack of suitable campsite

Proposed Rock Dump site is next to long-term construction, more costly than expected, report states.

A statue of William Henry Seward stands outside the Dimond Courthouse in downtown Juneau. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
Juneau man convicted of sexual abuse of 15-year-old girl more than four years after incidents occur

JPD: Randy James Willard, 39, sent explicit videos to and engaged in sexual contact with victim.

Capital Transit buses stop at the Valley Transit Center on Thursday. Two bus routes serving areas of the Mendenhall Valley and near the airport will temporarily be discontinued starting April 22 due to lack of staff. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Capital Transit temporarily suspending two Mendenhall Valley routes due to shortage of drivers

Officials hope to fix situation by July; extra tourist buses also scaled back due to fleet shortage.

Most Read