An Albany Township family is grieving the loss of a puppy they say was killed by a hunter's arrow.

Lilly, a 10-month-old border collie and pointer mix, was found dead Sunday morning.

"I just keep wishing it was all just a horrible nightmare and that she will just come back and cuddle with us like she used to," said owner Kayla Quales, 22.

Lilly was an Easter present from her husband, Joseph, four siblings, parents and brother's girlfriend.

A Pennsylvania Game Commission dispatcher said Sunday that the commission would investigate the incident.

The dog, which most of the time was kept at the home of Kayla's parents, Barbara and Darryl Dieter, in the 200 block of Guinea Road, was last seen about 5 p.m. Saturday.

Kayla Quales, who lives nearby, got a call about 7:30 p.m. from one of her parents' neighbors, Larry Shrawder, saying that the dog had been shot on his property.

Shrawder, 51, said that he had allowed two hunters onto his property. One of them called about him at 6:05 p.m. to say that two other people trespassed onto the property and shot the dog in front of them with a crossbow, he said.

Shrawder said he'd like to think that nobody would shoot a dog on purpose, but he knows there are people who will, adding that he will post a "no trespassing" sign today.

Joseph and Kayla rushed to the property and searched for Lilly with Kayla's family until 11 p.m., but couldn't find her.

They found her the next morning in an open field on Shrawder's property.

An arrow was discovered 10 or 15 feet away, Kayla said. The family reported the shooting to the Game Commission.

"I don't want to point blame," Kayla said. "I hope if anything, we raise awareness for the importance of following the proper protocol."

Joseph added, "It could have been one of the little kids up there playing around."

Kayla said that while Lilly was not kept on a leash, she had been trained not to leave the property and wandering wasn't a problem.

"That is a decision I have to live with that I regret - not having her on a leash," Kayla said.

Contact Beth Anne Heesen: 610-371-5084 or bheesen@readingeagle.com.