ATLANTA — Please slow down -- that's the message one woman is sending to delivery drivers this busy holiday season after she says her service dog was hit and killed in front of her home.
Sheldon was a certified medical service dog who kept his owner Lauren company around the clock. Lauren doesn't want to use her last name because she says people online have been cruel about Sheldon's death.
"He was just incredibly smart. I can't reiterate that enough. He liked to watch TV and play with his chuck-it ball and he has this squeaky fish," Lauren said.
She adopted her furry friend when he was nine weeks old and he's been with her ever for the past eight years, she said.
On Nov. 26, a delivery truck driving through their neighborhood would change that.
"The truck ran over him and it killed him instantly," she said.
The devastated dog owner said the driver didn't slow down as they drove away.
She shared emails with 11Alive from Amazon where an insurance adjuster writes that the company is opening a claim to investigate what happened. Lauren also filed a police report. It lists an Amazon driver as the person who hit Sheldon.
Though her companion is no longer with her, she said her story should be a warning for everyone.
"That easily could have been someone's child," Lauren said.
In a statement to 11Alive, Amazon said the driver responsible is no longer delivering packages for the company.
She adds that Sheldon was a service dog under voice command and she just wants to warn people what could happen.
"I hate that people are blaming me for something that I wish it could have been me. If I could have been the one in front of that truck, I would have done anything to save his life," she said.
She hopes people will learn from her loss and either slow down or pay extra attention this holiday season.
"He was my best friend," she said about Sheldon. "Nothing will ever replace him."