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Pooch, pardoned by governor, is again ordered euthanized

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)

WATERVILLE, Maine (AP) — A judge on Tuesday ordered a dog to be euthanized despite a pardon issued by Gov. Paul LePage.

The judge declined to set aside the order to euthanize Dakota the Alaskan husky, saying she didn’t have leeway under state law.

Further appeals are expected.

Dakota originally was ordered to be put down after getting loose and killing a neighbor’s pug last year, then getting loose again and attacking a second dog.

Dakota became a celebrity after being pardoned by the Republican governor on March 30. But Kennebec County District Attorney Maeghan Maloney said the governor lacked the authority to do so.

The dog was adopted before the euthanization order on March 21. At issue is whether the dog’s new owner has standing to intervene in the court proceedings.

Judge Valerie Stanfill ruled Tuesday that state law doesn’t give the new owner standing in the case.

For now, Dakota remains under the care of the Waterville Area Humane Society. The shelter’s director has described Dakota as a “model resident.”

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