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Houston mayor apologizes for death of dog left on side of highway by police officer

gueroThe mayor of Houston has apologized to a family whose nearly blind Chihuahua was killed after a police officer arrested his owner and left the dog on the side of a busy highway.

“Let me give you a public apology right now on behalf of the city of Houston,” Mayor Annise Parker said. “I don’t know what airhead – there’s another word in my mind but I’m not going to say it – would throw, you wouldn’t put a kid on the side of the road. You shouldn’t put someone’s pet on the side of the road.”

The airheaded officer has not been identified.

But police say an internal investigation of the incident is underway, and that it could take six months to complete.

As reported by KTRK, the complaint stems from a July 14 traffic stop. Josie Garcia says her husband and a friend were pulled over for failing to use a turn signal. Police say they found drugs in the vehicle — a prescription medicine called phencyclidine — and arrested both men. (The charges against Garcia’s husband were later dropped.)

According to Garcia, the arresting officer wouldn’t let her husband call anyone to pick up Guero, the family’s 14-year-old Chihuahua who was along for the ride.

Guero had bad vision due to cataracts, she says. He was left on the side of the highway when the vehicle was towed, and the officer took no steps to contact animal control, Garcia said.

“My husband pleaded with the officer to let him call someone to come get Guero … but he said it wasn’t his problem, that the dog would be fine,” Garcia said.

Three days later, Garcia, who had posted “lost” signs in the area, received a call from someone who had spotted Guero. She found him dead on a shoulder of the Eastex Freeway, about half a mile from where he had been left.

Guero wrapped the dog’s body in a towel, took him home and buried him.

Crated pups left to nurse off dead mother

motherdog

Those who think this website contains too much distressing dog news (which it does, because the world does) might want to skip this story.

“Beyond the human imagination,” is how the sheriff of Parker County, Texas, described it.

But, obviously, it wasn’t — at least not for the human who shot and killed a mother dog and then left her body in a crate with her nursing puppies.

Sheriff Larry Fowler said yesterday an arrest has been made in connection with the incident, which came to light when a school bus driver found the crated animals Wednesday morning in Springtown.

The mother dog had an apparent gunshot wound to the head and was found in in the crate with 10 puppies that were less than two weeks old, according to Fox News

“These puppies were left defenseless and still nursing on their deceased mother,” the sheriff said.

He added, “Parker County does not have an animal problem. We have a people problem. It’s hard to imagine that someone would be so cruel as to execute any animal. But to kill a dog with nursing babies and leave such a gory picture is beyond human imagination.”

arrestedOn its Facebook page, the Sheriff’s Office reported the arrest over the weekend of Tammy Green Douglas.

Douglas, 44, was jailed early Sunday morning on charges of animal cruelty, but freed after posting $3,000 bond Sunday afternoon, according to a press release issued last night.

The dead dog was described as a four-year-old brown heeler-shepherd mix named Aowa. She’d been shot with a 9 mm handgun, while in the crate, the sheriff’s office said, and the puppies were later placed inside with her.

Investigators were led to Douglas by a tipster who showed them a text message she allegedly sent: “I did what I did and I would do it again — if need be.”

According to an affidavit filed in connection with the case, Douglas acted out of revenge because Aowa had killed another dog that got too close to the litter, KVUE reported.

The 10 puppies were taken to the Angels & Outlaws Second Chance Bully Ranch.

The organization reports on its Facebook page that the puppies have been placed with two surrogate pit bulls who will help nurse them until they can be put up for adoption.

Dog trapped in car honks til he’s freed

A veterinarian says a dog trapped in a car on a 90-degree day in eastern Pennsylvania honked the horn until he was rescued.

Nancy Soares said the 11-year-old chocolate Labrador — named Max — was brought to the Macungie Animal Hospital last month after he had been in the car for about an hour.

She said Max’s owner, Donna Gardner, of Upper Macungie Township, had gone shopping, returned home, unloaded her packages, but forgot that Max was still in the car. The owner later heard the horn honking, checked outside, then went back in. When she heard the horn honking again, she went outside and saw Max sitting in the driver’s seat, WFMZ reported.

Soares said the owner immediately gave Max cold water to drink and wet him down with towels before rushing him to the clinic, where — though he was warm and panting heavily — he was determined to have suffered no lasting injuries.

Two more reasons to not leave dog in car

stolenyorkiewiliam040410The first comes from Washington, D.C., where a woman left her Yorkshire terrier in her car Saturday while she popped into a laundromat. When she returned, her car window was smashed and her beloved William was gone.

“He’s so much a part of my family. Everyone that knows him loves him. I know he’s scared right now. I can’t sleep because I know he’s scared, and he doesn’t know these people. He’s not gonna eat. They just need to get him back,” Denise Conner-Battle told ABC 7 News.

The second comes from Middleton, Wisconsin, where a dog left in a car while his owner stopped for lunch Thursday somehow managed to shift the car from park to neutral.

Police said the car rolled out of its parking spot and into a pickup truck across the lot. Damage to both vehicles was estimated in the thousands of dollars, according to an Associated Press report. The dog was fine.

FBI agent who shot dog has left the bureau

The FBI agent who shot and killed his neighbor’s 3-pound Chihuahua last year is no longer an FBI agent.

Erik Vasys, an FBI spokesman in San Antonio, would not say if Leslie Ledger, an agent stationed in Waco, resigned, retired or was fired — only that he’s gone, the Waco Tribune-Herald reported.

Ledger, 41, could not be reached for comment, the newspaper said.

Ledger was sentenced to deferred probation for two years and ordered to perform 300 hours of community service in July after pleading no contest to state felony animal cruelty charges stemming from shooting his neighbor’s dog, Sassy.

He shot the dog with a pellet rifle when she appeared in front of his home. The dog belonged to a young girl whose family lives down the street from Ledger.

Only 1 of 8 show dogs survives night in van

Only one of the eight show dogs left overnight in a hot van in Missouri survived.

A Siberian Husky named Cinder is now back home with her owners, according to St. Louis Today.

Seven of the show dogs — many big breeds with thick coats — perished from heat stroke after being left in the van on June 22. The dogs were returning from a dog show in Iowa and were left in the van by their handler.

Investigators aren’t certain how many hours elapsed before the dogs were found. Authorities said temperatures in the van could have risen to as high as 120 degrees.

Capt. Ralph Brown of the Jefferson County sheriff’s office said Wednesday that detectives were wrapping up their investigation and would sending a report to the county prosecutor.

K-9 officer will face no charges in dog’s death

No charges will be filed against the Alameda K-9 officer whose dog died after he left it unattended for more than three hours in his vehicle, the Alameda County district attorney’s office says.

“It is very tragic when an animal dies under these circumstances, but there is insufficient evidence to prove that the officer acted unreasonably based upon all the evidence presented in the case,” Assistant District Attorney Charlotte Green said in a written statement on Monday.

An internal police investigation into the actions of the unnamed police officer is still pending, according to the San Jose Mercury-News.

(Apparently the dog’s name isn’t being released either. Not a single newspaper report seems to mention it.)

The officer was attending a training exercise May 5 when he left the animal in his personal vehicle for about three hours and 15 minutes, police said. Temperatures that day were around 70 degrees in the Bay area, and police say the officer did leave his windows cracked.

Nevertheless, when he returned, the 6 1/2-year Belgian Malinois was in distress. The dog was taken to the Bay Area Veterinary Emergency Clinic in San Leandro, where it died.

The officer remains on duty.