“QUAHOG, R.I.” (CBS Connecticut) — A major “Family Guy” character was killed off in a shocking way during Sunday night’s episode.

In what is every dog owner’s nightmare, Brian Griffin, the family’s pet dog, dies after getting hit by a car.

“You’ve given me a wonderful life, I love you all,” Brian says in his last words as the Griffin family surrounds him with tears in their eyes.

It was a very emotional moment for the show, which has been a part of the American mainstream since 1999, to kill off the beloved Brian. The Seth MacFarlane-voiced character was a fan favorite and he’s had many memorable episodes with Stewie Griffin.

Twitter exploded following the death of Brian.

“Family Guy” executive producer Steve Callaghan told E! Online that Brian’s death was “a fun way to shake things up.”

“It seemed more in the realm of a reality that a dog would get hit by a car, then if one of the kids died. As much as we love Brian, and as much as everyone loves their pets, we felt it would be more traumatic to lose one of the kids, rather than the family pet,” he told E! Online.

Callaghan added that he doesn’t think the backlash over Brian’s death will last with the show’s fans.

“I’m not, only because our fans are smart enough and have been loyal to our show for long enough, to know that they can trust us,” Callaghan told E! Online. “We always make choices that always work to the greatest benefit of the series.”

Brian will be replaced by a new dog named Vinny, who will be voiced by “Sopranos” actor Tony Sirico.

“Family Guy” is in its 13th season.

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