BOZEMAN, Mont. -

Bozeman police shot a dog in the Peet's Hill area Thursday morning.

Initial reports indicate the dog survived the shooting, but the owner told us it had to be put down because it had a broken back.

Seattle resident Kaelan Holmes is now searching for his other dog, Wolfie. He's already lost one dog. He tells NBC Montana Wolfie got scared and ran off at the sound of gunshots.

"When everybody's gone, my dogs are the only thing that I have and they keep me company and they keep me sane and they're good," says Holmes.

Holmes says he never saw officers as they neared his camp.

"I just heard her bark twice and then two gun shots...but I was right here and I know she didn't attack them. She barks at people sometimes. It's something she does," explains Holmes.

When we asked about Sadie, Holmes became emotional.

"She's been my companion, my daughter...Sadie's never harmed anybody. She's around children, vulnerable situations and people all the time and she's great. She's loving and she loves people that love her," says Holmes.

He tells me he doesn't understand why police didn't use non-lethal force to subdue his dog.

"They killed her. They shot to kill her," says Holmes.

Police say when officers approached Holmes' camp, Sadie charged them, growling and barking. They say they feel fortunate it was two officers approaching the camp and not two children.

"He's going to receive some citations for having a vicious dog and a dog off-leash and he's going to move his camp," says Bozeman Patrol Captain Dave McManis.

We asked officers how they make the decision to use deadly force. They said if an officer feels threatened at the time, he has the right to defend himself. But whenever such force is used, Captain Dave McManis says there's always an internal review.

"We'll thoroughly investigate it and see if -- number one -- any policies or common sense violations occurred during the incident and is there any training points that we could learn from it," explains McManis.

One thing Holmes has learned... "If I could have replayed it right, I would have tied her to my leg," says Holmes.

Holmes says he has contacted his attorney.