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(Memphis)  Two family dogs have been put to sleep by Memphis Animal Services.

The dogs were picked-up for running loose in Oakhaven and were in the back of a police car when the owners came home. Police took a report and handed the dogs over to Animal Control.

The dogs were later euthanized without the owner’s knowledge.

“We just can`t believe it. We can`t believe it,” said owner James Brown.  “After seven days and your dog is dead.

James Brown says his dogs should never have been out on street.

“I`ve had them three years and this is the first time they`ve ever got out,” he said.

But he no idea when police picked his dogs up, they’d end-up dead a few days later.

“I mean, we can`t get them back,” he said.

Brown says when his dogs escaped from their backyard pen, they bit another dog. He says a police officer told him that his dogs, Shanta and Prince, would be held at Animal Services for ten days to check for rabies.

“And when I called, they said ‘Your dogs are dead’,” he told us.

His dogs had been euthanized. That’s because after 72 hours, unclaimed dogs are considered property of the City, and the City can do with them what it wants.

“They said a truck came and picked them up,” said Brown. “So, you can pay a truck to go and destroy the remains but you can`t call me?”

Brown says with one phone call, he would have been there, had he known it was life or death.

“Everyone is upset. Even my neighbors are upset,” he said.

“If they did kill them dogs, there needs to be a lawsuit there for real,” said neighbor George Trowbridge.

In a statement from Memphis Animal Services, it admits both dogs were logged into the facility, but it doesn’t know yet what went wrong and why the dogs weren’t held for Brown.

Brown says his dogs were adoptable, if anything, and should not now be dead.

“People just don`t kill dogs for no reason and that`s what they`ve done,” he said.

Memphis Animal Services says it’s going to talk to the police officer and animal control officer that handled the case to find out what happened.