Pets and Vets: Dog found with muzzle taped shut recovering with veterinary care


William Leonard Dodson arrested on felony animal cruelty charges.

South Carolina

A North Charleston, South Carolina, dog was found with its muzzle taped tightly with electrical tape for as long as two days, according to the Charleston Post and Courier. The tape was wound so tightly that the dog, named Caitlyn by caretakers, had her tongue caught between her teeth and the blood flow cut off.

>>> Caitlyn rests following surgery to repair damage caused by the electrical tape wound around her muzzle.

Caitlyn was transferred to Veterinary Specialty Care in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, for treatment, which has included hyperbaric oxygen chamber and laser therapy treatments and extensive surgery to remove the damaged portions of her lips, cheeks and tongue. At one point, it was estimated that 25 percent of her tongue would need to be removed, but during surgery it was found that Caitlyn would lose only minimal function, the Post and Courier reports.

North Charleston animal control is investigating the case. William Leonard Dodson, 41, of North Charleston has been arrested on a felony charge of animal cruelty and jailed on $50,000 bail. The maximum penalty for felony cruelty in South Carolina is five years in prison and a $5,000 fine, which leaves some calling for harsher punishment. An affidavit states that Dodson said Caitlyn wouldn't stop barking and that was why he had taped her mouth shut.


Roman Ganta, MS, PhD, a professor at Kansas State University and director of its Center of Excellence for Vector-Borne Diseases, is establishing a breeding facility for ticks, trying to learn more about how they harbor and spread sickness to humans and animals, according to The Kansas City Star.

Until the laboratory is up and running, K-State researchers will continue to buy most of their ticks from Oklahoma State University or collect them in the field. They drag a white cloth through the grasslands, which the ticks are drawn to and cling to, the Star reports. To breed the ticks, scientists start with an engorged female that is ready to lay eggs in an incubator. When the larvae emerge they're planted on an animal for their first meal.

Ganta tells the Star that making people more aware of the dangers of a tick bite is part of what he wants K-State's new center to do, because he knows firsthand how sick a person can become when infected with a vector-borne disease. At age 25 he contracted malaria while still living in India, and was sick for 6 months. When he recovered, he promised to use his education to work toward slowing the spread of vector-borne diseases to humans and animals.

New Mexico

The New Mexico Department of Health has determined through genetic sequencing that a new strain of rabies was found in a fox, according to the Albuquerque Journal. A 78-year-old woman who had been bitten by the fox received a series of vaccinations to keep her from developing the illness. The new strain, which was identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, is somewhat similar to the strains that bats carry, but unique, the Journal says.

New York

A service dog named Figo that jumped into the path of an oncoming minibus to protect his blind owner is out of surgery and recovering, according to The Journal News. Audrey Stone, the dog's owner, and Figo were crossing the road when the bus came straight toward them. The dog's protective instincts kicked in and he jumped between Stone and the bus, trying to take most of the impact himself. The driver of the bus told police he didn't see the pair.

Stone was taken to the hospital where she was treated for a fractured right elbow, three broken ribs, a fractured ankle and a cut on her head, while Figo was treated at Middlebranch Veterinary for tissue damage and a slight break to his right front leg, according to The Journal News. The driver of the minibus was given a summons for failing to yield to a pedestrian and taken off the of the road while the incident is still under investigation.


A Senate committee in Oregon is considering a bill that would ban cat declawing in the state, according to The Oregonian. HB 3494 contains two proposed amendments. One would allow veterinarians to declaw cats and other animals for behavioral reasons as long as they follow certain client education protocols and conduct a waiting period before surgery. Another amendment would ban declawing for nonmedical reasons beginning in 2018.

Both amendments would widen the scope of the bill, which would also prohibit devocalizing, to include dogs, rabbits, ferrets, iguanas and birds. The Oregon Veterinary Medical Association would also be required to begin reporting declawing data to the legislature by the end of 2016, the Oregonian reports.

South Carolina

The South Carolina Senate Agricultural Subcommittee is considering a bill known as “The Vet Bill.” The bill outlines record-keeping guidelines for veterinary clinics and animal shelters, including prescription drug record and labeling rules, the scope of service veterinarians can provide, rules for mobile veterinary clinics and provisions for those who seek low-cost veterinary clinics, according to WLTX-TV.

Some veterinarians are concerned that animals aren't getting the care they need from licensed veterinarians, and tracking medical records of animals serviced at low-cost and nonprofit clinics would be key to ensuring this, the station reports.

A point of debate is that an individual would have to make less than $11,770 per year to receive care for their pet at a low-cost or nonprofit clinic. Opponents are concerned that this would leave middle-income pet owners in a bind when it comes to paying for veterinary services. Should the bill not make full committee this session, proponents plan to pick it up next year.

Related Videos
© 2024 MJH Life Sciences

All rights reserved.