Loyal Dog Found Guarding Body of Hit and Run Victim Adopted by Family Friend

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Joshua Laven and Ozziet

A week after his owner was killed in a hit and run accident, Ozziet has been adopted by a family friend.

“I’ve known Josh since I was 15,” Kimberly Day of Pacifica said Thursday. “I’m happy to take him (Ozziet) – it’s the least I could do.”

Day picked up¬†Ozziet at the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter, where he’d been taken after the accident to be treated for minor injuries. Recognizing her, Ozziet whimpered sadly when supervisor Linda Puzziferro turned him over to Day.

In some ways, the timing seems more than a little coincidental. “I lost my 15-year-old dog about a month ago,” Day said.

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-Original article continued-

Police are seeking assistance from the public to identify the driver of a vehicle who struck and killed the bicyclist on a stretch of Highway 1 in Davenport, California after the victim’s dog was found guarding his body. According to officials,¬†Joshua Laven was riding his bicycle just north of Wilder Ranch State Park and died from injuries sustained when he was hit by an automobile.

Laven was thrown from the roadway, and was found partially obscured by vegetation. His faithful companion, a Cairn Terrier mix riding in the basket of his bicycle, refused to leave his side.

Police estimate that the victim was struck sometime between 10 p.m. Thursday and 2 a.m. Friday. A motorist spotted the bicycle, the dog and the body and called 911 at 10:45 a.m. the next day.

Based on evidence collected at the scene, police believe the suspect’s vehicle is a 1999 or 2000 model sedan or small SUV, likely green in color, with some damage to the front end. Anyone with information regarding the incident is urged to call the California Highway Patrol at 831-662-0511 Monday through Friday. After hours, contact Salinas dispatch at 831-796-2160.