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FILE - In this March 30, 2017, file photo provided by the Waterville Humane Society, an Alaskan husky named Dakota, who killed a neighbor's pug last year, sits in Waterville, Maine. Maine’s conservation department is getting involved in the proposed pardoning of Dakota, saying the case could have implications for the state’s animal welfare laws. (Karen Vance/Waterville Humane Society via AP, File)
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Conservation department getting involved in pardoning of dog

FILE - In this March 30, 2017, file photo provided by the Waterville Humane Society, an Alaskan husky named Dakota, who killed a neighbor's pug last year, sits in Waterville, Maine. Maine’s conservation department is getting involved in the proposed pardoning of Dakota, saying the case could have implications for the state’s animal welfare laws. (Karen Vance/Waterville Humane Society via AP, File)

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Maine’s conservation department is getting involved in the proposed pardoning of a dog, saying the case could have implications for the state’s animal welfare laws.

Republican Gov. Paul LePage said last week he was pardoning Dakota the Alaskan husky from a death sentence levied at a court hearing. Dakota killed a neighbor’s pug last year.

Dakota’s case is scheduled for a court hearing on Tuesday. The state Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry has offered to assist the court with the case.

A spokesman for the department says it has a “strong interest” in the case and wants to make sure animal owners are afforded due process. The department says the dangerous-dog statute is designed to protect the public and not to punish dogs like Dakota.

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