Society

Pet Owner Under Investigation For Poisoning Dog That Had To Be Euthanized

| by Jonathan Constante
Loca.Loca.

An investigation has been opened by Monroe County Animal Control in Michigan after a dog was found in a constant state of seizure for days.

The white and brown female dog was estimated to be somewhere between 4 and 5 years old. She was euthanized at Emergency Veterinary Hospital of Ann Arbor on May 13 after being found in a contorted state of extreme and continuous seizure, Toledo Blade reported.

“She was in the most violent seizure I’ve ever seen in a dog,” said Trina Stillwagon, general manager of the Monroe Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. “We knew the second we got there she was in extreme distress.”

The organization received an emergency call on May 11 from a neighbor of the dog’s owner. The group filed a complaint with the county on May 13 and an investigation has been opened.

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“We’re looking into allegations that this dog was abused,” Sgt. Greg Berman said.

Stillwagon said the dog, Loca, may have been continuously seizing for a couple of days. Loca was also visibly underweight and had a lot of bloody diarrhea and projectile bloody vomit. Dr. Lindsay Ruland said the dog probably had gastrointestinal bleeding.

“Her kidney values were also extremely high,” Ruland said. “She was basically in kidney failure.”

Loca was essentially put into an induced coma to allow her brain to rest and reduce swelling. Despite all the medication she was under, the dog was still seizing intermittently and vomiting blood.

“She couldn't stop,” Ruland said. “She was just pouring blood out of her lungs, basically drowning in her own blood.”

Rescue group Providing for Paws, which often handles extreme medical cases, assisted Monroe SPCA in covering costs for Loca’s emergency care. Founder and President Joanna Dixon said they did everything they could to save the dog’s life.

“She was too far gone and had suffered for too long,” Dixon said. “There was nothing more we could do for her, and it was time to let her go.”

Ruland believes poisoning caused Loca’s condition and said she had never handled a case as extreme as hers.

“I've never seen anything like that, and I've seen a lot of crazy things,” she said. “You just don’t know if they could still have a good quality of life until you give it a chance, and we were all willing to try for her.”

Stillwagon said testimonies from neighbors suggest the dog may have been intentionally poisoned by its owner. Berman said it would be “very disturbing” if true.

“There’s been some allegations in the past with people setting out a tray of antifreeze to poison a neighbor’s dog, but intentional poisoning of your own pet is not common,” Berman said.

The owner could be facing up to four years in prison if found guilty for felony animal cruelty, Berman said. He added that failure to provide medical care is a type of neglect and would be a misdemeanor.

An online fundraiser has been started on YouCaring.com to help cover costs for Loca’s medical care. So far, the fundraiser has raised $330 out of its $3,500 goal.

Sources: Toledo Blade, You Caring

Photo Credit: Toledo Blade