The Duncan Banner

December 14, 2012

Neighbor’s persistence saves dogs

Rebeka Rutledge
The Duncan Banner

DUNCAN — Outraged at seeing several dogs beaten with boards, grabbed by their collars and even thrown in the air, prompted numerous phone calls, including to the People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) organization.

Though the Duncan resident who witnessed a neighbor constantly abusing animals is unnamed, the alleged crimes are now filed with the Stephens County Humane Society and the owner of the four dogs, three were pitbull mixes, that were treated so poorly, has been arrested.

Seeing animals living in poor conditions is saddening, however, witnessing them being abused was too much for the good samaritan to keep quiet.

“They called PETA, they called everyone,” said Kelly Nelson, Stephens County Humane Society board president. “They complained of their neighbor beating his dogs.”

Once the man was caught in the act, the Duncan Police Department stepped in and searched his home and found disturbing conditions. There were four dogs and two cats, all who appeared to be undernourished and anti-social. Additionally, the residence where the animals were had other issues. Electricity was not working, and feces as deep as three inches in some rooms was found.

“It’s heartbreaking that they were in that situation in the first place,” said Nicole Baldwin, Stephens County Humane Society shelter manager. “Do not hesitate to call in (if you witness animal abuse) and continue to move up the chain of command if nothing is done.”

Once the animals were rescued from the home, they were turned over to animal control, which has a small window of life time and animals there are euthanized when not reclaimed by their owners.

However, in this case, the SCHS staff intervened and worked to find places most of the animals could go in order to recover and get rehabilitated.

“We reached out to our rescue partners and have placed all four of the dogs in two different facilities,” Nelson said. “That is huge to be able to place all four and the Humane Society is thrilled.”

One of the cats was in such a poor condition it had to be euthanized and a second one is waiting at the shelter to be adopted. Of the four dogs, three are pit bull mixes, of which two are males and one is a pregnant female, and the fourth dog is a male German shepherd mix.

“Today (Thursday) we took Wolf, the shepherd, to a vet in Moore who does private rescue and he’s the most severe, just real shy of people,” said Baldwin. “On Monday, we will be taking the other three to a vet who also does private rescue in Bartlesville.”

The Moore rehabilitation is breed specific for German shepherds and it is Wolf who will most likely take the most time to be in condition to be adopted into a forever home. But Baldwin said she is confident they will all recover from their trauma.

“If the neighbors hadn’t taken it upon themselves to call and get it taken care of, I don’t want to think about what would have happened to them,” Baldwin said.

Nelson said the SCHS would love to hear the progress of these animals and the rescue partners will most likely let them know when the dogs have been placed in a home.

The man who was allegedly seen abusing these animals has been arrested, however, no charges have been filed as of yet. His name has not been released.