14-Year Old Service Dog Dumped at Kill Shelter

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Bruno1When a 14-year old Rottweiler was abandoned at an Elizabethtown, North Carolina shelter, animal control employees immediately took notice. As it turned out, the severely neglected senior was a former service dog, who’d provided support for his disabled owner until the day she died.

At a kill shelter such as the one Bruno was surrendered to, a senior dog showing signs of neglect and starvation who is partially blind, would typically be euthanized. But shelter workers just couldn’t give up on Bruno. They contacted A Shelter Friend who is desperately trying to save the special dog.

The organization reached out to Facebook fans for help:

This gentle sweet OLD man was a former service dog, who served his disabled human until the day she died, and was left neglected starved, partially blind and now turned in to a shelter to be killed. Even after the neglect, he loves everyone and is a friendly gentle old man who does not deserve to be killed because they now longer had a need for him.

This gentle soul used to help with handicapped family member and now he is disposed of like garbage. This is so WRONG ! 

Unable to say no, A Shelter Friend took Bruno to the Elizabethtown Vet Hospital for care. They’ve found a rescue group that will provide foster care and, when he’s back in good health, a forever home to live out the rest of his days.

Now, A Shelter Friend is asking for help from the community:

We have secured a rescue for him and will be transporting him in a couple of weeks when stable. We need your help with donations for his care. Please send donations via our website donate buttonwww.ashelterfriend.org or by calling the Vet hospital directly 910-862-3000 Please help us help this so deserving old man.



  1. I know this dog personally his name is GAUGE not bruno! I also know his owner and her name is MONICA CLAUDINE BACOTT BRIGGS she is from parkton, nc and is NOT DEAD but currently resides in elizabethtown, nc. She was living with my brother for on most a year and brought this dog to his house when she moved in. This was not his dog at any point and time. My brother is how ever passed away and SHOULD NOT BE BLAMED FOR SOMETHING HE DIDNT DO!!! To my knowledge this dog has NEVER been a service dog for ms monica. You all need to get your story straight before you start pointing fingers at ANYONE especially my precious angel brother!!! Let the dead rest for goodness sake!!! When my brother passed away last thursday monica left this dog at his home and she left him there! My niece, my brother that passed aways daughter had the audacity to call etown animal shelter to come pick up gauge so he could have a forever better home. This dog was VERY WELL taken care of when she abandoned him at my brothers until the shelter picked him up from my brothers residence. When gauge was taken to the animal shelter monicas son ROBERT was escorted to the shelter and picked him up. When helefyt there he went and got his mother monica out of jail and thats when the dog was “dumped” back out. SHE AND HER SON dumped him out at the shelter NOT ONE OF MY FAMILY MEMBERS!! Looks like to me that charges need to be taken out on ms monica claudine bacott briggs for ABANDONMENT AND NEGLECT!!!! So my family members would appreciate it if YOU ALL OR ANYONE for that matter get the story straight!!! We the family members WILL NOT set back and let ANYONE bash my brother that just passed away, we have ENOUGH TO WORRY ABOUT!!!The animal shelter was very aware of the situation so I dont know how this story got twisted but we WILL get to the bottom of it!!! And for the record NOBODY aint taking up for any “pos” that abanded the dog!! If anyone needs to be contacted it needs to be ms monica claudine bacott briggs at 910-729-0431!!!We will stand behind the shelter 100% for anything that needs to be done, warrants ect.!!!! And you all have a blessed day!!!!

    • Hi denise. This is the dogs original owner. GAGE was my grandmother’s pet and I grew up with him as A kid. Unfortunately Monica is my biological mother and I’m trying to see about getting my family member back ( Gage) I pray that he’s well and not put down. I’ve been inquiring about him but haven’t been able to get any info concerning him can u please help. My name is not Robert my name is Joshua in Fayetteville nc and I only have one other brother who name is Garret who lives in Seattle wa so that info is incorrect also Gage was a service dog for my disable grandmother. I can be reached at 9103648660 Thank you

    • The part about his owner being dead isn’t entirely true, he was a support dog and whatever previous owner may have passed but his current owner is alive. We contacted his owner and the shelter because the dog was abandoned and left for dead. Animal control came and got the dog and his owner went and picked him up. We left our contact information with AC in case something else was needed and the next day they called us to let us know that the dog was back on the street in front of the shelter. They wanted to the owners information from us to contact her Again. The owner had picked him up the day before and came back the next day and thrown him out at AC. This is an even more of a sad story and I want everyone know how much worst it is. People who treat animals this way are criminals. I just want to make sure everyone understands the entire story. We wanted the best for the dog.

  2. I know this dog personally and his owner. SHE HAS NOT Passed away but is the one who threw him out on the street in front of the animal shelter in Elizabethtown!! I hope that the county press charges for neglect and abandonment. My family will gladly support them and hope to gain addition support from fellow animal lovers. Please help to make sure people like this pay for the crimes they committed and send a message to animal lovers that we will not tolerate behavior like this!

  3. What I wouldn’t have given to have another 7 years with my Rottie, Sarge, who passed away unexpectedly at 7 years old. Donating in his honor.

  4. Why wasn’t he returned to the organization that trained him for service? Any organization that trains service dogs would take in retired dogs in a heart beat. It’s said, but the deceased persons family probably did not have the means or the know how to do it.

    • I would assume the folks that had him after his owner died did not care enough to go through that effort, seeing as they didn’t to even take the effort to feed the poor old guy.

  5. Please, if you are able, update on Brunos’ condition. I’d love to see pics of him happy and healthy.

  6. Just made a small donation for this sweet boy. Rotties are my soft spot, hope he gets a good place to live out his days. God bless