Residents in a northwest Edmonton neighbourhood could only watch as a gruesome scene unfolded late Monday morning, after a loose dog attacked another dog, leaving the second one dead.

CTV News has learned the attack took place at about 11 a.m., witnesses said a large dog, described as a bull mastiff, who was loose, attacked and killed a poodle owned by a woman who lived in the area.

“She was just walking up the street when this huge bull mastiff attacked it, and tore it all to pieces,” Annie Tracy told CTV News.

Tracy described hearing screaming, before discovering the grisly scene.

Animal Care and Control Officer Tara Wood was investigating the incident Monday.

“She said she tried her best to get this dog off, but the dog probably weighs more than she does,” Wood said.

Even more shocking, witnesses said, were the actions of the larger dog’s owner – who they said showed up and pulled the dog away, only to flee the scene.

“I thought that he was putting his dog away so he could go to the other owner,” Witness Emily Fee said. “But unfortunately he backed up and started driving backwards down the whole street.”

“The reported person that showed up that we have the description of, pulled up, took the dog, and put it in his vehicle, and backed up,” Wood said. “So [the owner was] obviously trying to hide his license plate.”

In the wake of the incident, officers spent hours searching the area for the dog or the owner, but did not find either.

“Animal Control, [the] City of Edmonton, we’re going to try our best to locate this pet owner, and hopefully conclude this for the older lady,” Wood said.

“A lot of these people have little children and we want to make sure we can keep these dogs in control, full control, and contained to make sure the pet owners know the potential dangers of letting your dog run loose.”

Animal Control said when the owner is found, the person will likely face a fine, and the dog could be put on the Restricted Dog List, meaning the animal would have to wear a muzzle and be on a leash when in public.

If the situation is deemed serious enough, officials said the dog could be put down.

With files from Brenna Rose