Case Snapshot
Case ID: 16801
Classification: Vehicular
Animal: dog (pit-bull)
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Saturday, Oct 30, 2010

Disposition: Open

Suspect(s) Unknown - We need your help!

A veteran animal welfare officer is outraged at the horrific injuries a dog suffered when it was thought to have been dragged behind a vehicle in Whangarei.

Whangarei SPCA manager Francine Shields is so angry about the injuries sustained by the tan pitbull-type dog on Saturday, she has offered a $5000 reward for information leading to a successful prosecution of the killer. Ms Shields said while nobody saw exactly what happened, its injuries were consistent with being dragged behind a vehicle.

Now the hunt is on for a light-coloured ute seen where the dog's body was dumped.

Ms Shields said in more than 20 years as an animal welfare officer, these were among the worst injuries she had seen on an animal. "We've got to catch whoever did this."

Much of the dog's left side was "skinned" while the bones in its legs had been shaved down and left with friction burn marks, consistent with being dragged along a sealed road.

Ms Shields said it was a cold, callous act that showed a blatant disregard for an animal's life.

"On a scale of one to 10 in animal abuse cases [she's seen in her 20-plus years], this is pretty high up there, an eight or nine. I've seen some pretty terrible things and this is pretty bad."

SPCA was called by a Kamo resident about 9.30am on Saturday who said she saw what looked like a badly injured animal dumped by the ute in Lake Ora Rd.

About 15 minutes later, SPCA inspector Rachael Wyatt was on the scene, and pretty disgusted by what she found.

"Its front legs were basically skinned and worn down.

The injuries were consistent with the dog trying to keep upright while being dragged along behind a vehicle, but failing."

She said there was a chance the dog fell from the back of a vehicle by accident, but felt if that had been the case the dog would have been given some sort of respectful burial.

"The lady [who rang in about the dog] thought it might still be alive but she was pretty distressed when she realised [it was dead]."

Ms Shields hoped the $5000 reward might prompt somebody to come forward.

Anyone who knew who was driving the light coloured-ute, with wood piled up in the back and a metal tray that was carrying a sawhorse on the back, or who may know anything about the dog, should contact the SPCA on (09) 438 9161 or police on (09) 430 4500.

If you have information on this case, please contact:
Police, (09) 430 4500
SPCA , (09) 438 9161


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