By Kate Raddatz

PLYMOUTH, Minn. (WCCO) — A family in Plymouth is searching for answers after their dog was shot and killed in broad daylight.

It happened around 3 in the afternoon on Wednesday in the backyard of a home in Plymouth.

Police believe someone shot the 6-year-old Springer Spaniel named Porter with a pellet gun.

A dog toy lays on the ground behind the Dockens’ suburban home, even though there is no dog at home anymore.

“He was everything to us,” Chris Docken said.

Chris Docken says his family’s Springer Spaniel named Porter was playing in the yard when his wife Sarah heard a yelp.

28290728 1520651853 1688 Police: Plymouth Dog Shot To Death With Pellet Gun

Porter (credit: GoFundMe)

She looked outside and saw the dog acting funny, and then he threw up.

Sarah called Chris who was at work.

“Was crying she said, ‘You need to come home quickly. Something happened to Porter, I think he’s been poisoned,'” Chris Docken said.

But he wasn’t poisoned.

When the Dockens rushed Porter to the animal hospital, they told them he’d been shot with a pellet gun.

“You can see how the fence has been worn some,” Docken said.

Whoever shot him was able to aim through a small opening of a six foot fence.

The fence now has a flyer, offering a reward for anyone to come forward with information that could lead to an arrest.

“He was a wedding present from my mom and dad. We picked him up Mother’s Day weekend of 2012,” Docken said. “He really was – he was our kid.”

The Dockens were able to say goodbye before Porter died at the hospital.

They said they never expected to face such a cruel tragedy in this quiet neighborhood.

“We’re really hoping to find who did this. Again, we don’t know who we don’t know why, but we certainly want to find out,” Docken said.

Plymouth Police are investigating the incident.

Chris said he is offering a $4,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest.

A family friend set up a GoFundMe for the Docken family.