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Thursday, Oct 13, 2011County: Saint Louis
Case Images: 3 files available
Alleged: Name Undisclosed
It is an animal cruelty case so disturbing the city of St. Louis is promising swift justice: a malnourished dog clinging to life was thrown in a dumpster to die by its presumed owner.
Sunday, Randy Grim, founder of Stray Rescue, walked an emaciated dog outside his Pine Street shelter. She is skin and bones, but she survived. Now the man who saved her is feeling weak and weary.
"This isn't a singular incident and I think people really need to understand that. The same day [this happened], there were so many dogs that suffered in other parts of north city at the hands of people. We don`t have a stray problem, we have a people problem," he said.
Grim`s Stray Rescue responds to stray animal calls for all of St. Louis. Thursday, woman in north city phoned the Citizens Service Bureau complaint hotline reporting two sick dogs in her basement. Randy found the dog he was out walking Sunday shaking and wobbling. She had hardly enough strength to stand.
The other dogs fate is horrifying, he said. "I asked where the other dog was and she said she just threw it away."
"She kind of said it all like she was talking about the weather," he said.
Randy discovered the dog in a dumpster behind the woman's home. He was alive, barely. He took graphic photos show the harrowing minutes that followed: vets in his shelter's trauma room trying desperately to save the malnourished dog that had been thrown in the dumpster to die. But he didn't make it.
"The way he looked in that dumpster was terrifying. Rushing him, watching our clinic do the best to save him," he said, choking up. "I was with him from the minute we found him until his last breath. And I just pet him and apologized and said `I`m sorry you were ever born.` All he ever felt and had known was suffering and pain. And it has to stop."
Randy named the dog that died 'Our Little Boy' and his scared, skinny sister 'Our Little Girl'. And he says the dogs weren't strays. They were that woman's pets.
"This isn't a singular incident," he said. "And I think people really need to understand that."
"There were about twenty dogs we saved that day, but not one was true a stray," he added.
"They were all abused. All of them were abused animals."
Randy published some of the graphic photos on his website along with a letter, ranting about a lack of punishment in cruelty cases. Sunday, when St. Louis`s mayor and health director were made aware of the abuse, both said it is unacceptable. They vowed to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law. The mayor even blogged about it on www.mayorslay.com. Health Director Pam Walker says she will personally tour the neighborhoods in the city where Randy reports the worse abuse Monday morning. Legislation is also currently working its way through the Board of Aldermen that would stiffen animal cruelty ordinances in the city.
But Randy knows the problem goes deeper than punishment. He says some people just don`t get it.
"Our Little Boy is something I`ll never forget," he said. "The woman that threw the dog away, [nicely] said to us all, `I think I`ll go get a Yorkie next.` And God have mercy on that poor dog. It`s almost like dealing with two year olds. If they don`t know they`re doing anything wrong, then what do you do? I didn`t feel anger at her. I felt numb."
Grim says he hopes constituents will call their aldermen and encourage them to vote for the ordinances currently being crafted. And he also would like more training for St. Louis police. He says some officers are not well-versed in the law. He is also taking in donations on his website, www.strayrescue.org, to match a $100,000 anonymous gift, which will help him care for more animals like Our Little Boy.
Our Little Girl is expected to survive.
There are two ways you can make a very real difference right now. Join the fight to secure desperately needed emergency medical funds by taking part in The Stracks Fund $100,000 Matching Gift Challenge, which you can learn about by clicking here. You can also have a voice for Our Little Boy, Our Little Girl, and all the suffering strays by contacting the St. Louis Aldermen and telling them you want to see Alderwoman Lyda Krewson's animal abuse bill passed.
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