KATY, Texas -

A family is mourning three dogs killed by a swarm of bees in their own backyard.

An Australian shepherd named Koda, a shorthair named Rocco and a black lab named Guss died in the Manuel family's backyard when hundreds of bees attacked.

"I think, 'Why did I have to go somewhere that morning? I keep thinking, if I could have just been there maybe I could have heard them crying and then I could have opened the door," Cathy Manuel said, "And then I know when reality sits in if I had opened the door it was a mob."

Manuel and her husband say there were thousands of bees swarming their backyard. Their dogs had hundreds of stings all over their bodies. Two dogs were dead when she found them and one was barely breathing.

Their home is in the Wood Creek Reserve subdivision in Katy.

Manuel's neighbor Deanna Cresap ran to help and found Koda clinging to life.

"He was still breathing, so I quickly got in the car and drove as fast as I could to the vet and that was it," Cresap said. "He didn't make it."

Emergency management officials tell Local 2 they have sent some of the bees to a lab at Texas A&M to be tested to determine if they are a killer bee hybrid.

Meanwhile, the Manuels are doing what they can to make sure this doesn't happen again. So far, there are no signs of other bees around their home.

Officials say if you see any bees swarming in your backyard, that could mean there is a larger hive somewhere else and you should call a beekeeper.