South Carolina man accused of taping dog’s muzzle shut

Author: CBS News/ AP
Published: Updated:

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C.- Police have arrested a man after a dog was found with electrical tape around its muzzle last week in North Charleston.

Multiple news outlets report authorities say 41-year-old William Leonard Dodson of North Charleston was arrested Monday night and charged with ill treatment of animals and torture. It was not clear if he has an attorney.

Caitlyn, a 15-month-old chocolate Staffordshire mix and a well-known stray in the neighborhood, showed up at a home with her mouth tightly bound last week.

A judge ordered a $50,000 bond against Dodson on Tuesday morning, reports CBS affiliate WSPA. At the hearing, the judge asked Dodson if he had any other dogs at home and he said that he did. The judge ordered police to take the dog away, reports the station.

Animal Society veterinarian Lucy Fuller initially said Caitlyn was in critical condition because the tape cut off blood flow to her tongue. But vets say the dog showed signs of progress over the weekend.

Caitlyn is receiving hyperbaric and cold laser treatment to save damaged tissue in her mouth.

“She’s been doing really, really well since transferring to us last night,” Kelli Klein, the director of emergency care at Veterinary Specialty Care in Mount Pelasant, told the station. “She’s had three full meals. She’s been able to (take in food) and swallow it.”

Officials think that the tape was on the dog for up to 36-48 hours, reports the station. The animal is scheduled for her first surgery either Monday or Tuesday of next week.

“This is the most malicious case of animal abuse I have ever seen in my entire career,” Charleston Animal Society Director of Anti-Cruelty and Outreach Aldwin Roman told the station.

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