FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — A Fort Worth couple is furious after their dog had to be euthanized following an encounter with a mail carrier.

Lawrence Brown says he heard his dog, Maxwell, yelping in pain on Saturday. He went across the street to find his 5-year-old Yorkshire Terrier hurting from an apparent head injury.

When Brown asked the mail carrier what happened, the worker explained that he had hit the dog with a rock.

“The dog was loose, not in their own yard, and was coming at the letter carrier,” said US Postal Service spokeswoman Arlene Sanchez. “It was a dog attack, and the letter carrier was defending himself.”

The dog’s owner says the Yorkshire Terrier, which typically weigh seven pounds or less, was not a threat to anyone and was always playful and friendly. Brown acknowledges Maxwell should not have been running free, saying he escaped the yard by burrowing under a fence.

The dog was taken to a nearby veterinarian, where it was diagnosed with a skull fracture and spinal injuries and was euthanized.

Police were called to the scene and are investigating the incident.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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