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An extreme case of animal neglect and cruelty was recently brought to light in Florida. A seriously diseased, neglected dog was found on August 7, 2012 in the Tampa Bay area with severe skin problems, open wounds and possible injuries, and covered in mange. The dog was so weak that it had laid in one spot until its wounds had scabbed over and caused the tortured soul to be stuck to the carpet to the point where it couldn’t get up on its own.. The dog, rescued by Hillsborough County Animal Control officers, is a Golden/Labrador Retriever mix named “Bella” who is only 1 year old. She was rescued and admitted for medical care, and is now being treated at Hillsborough County Animal Services.
According to Sergeant Perry with the animal services, Bella was in terrible pain, and the suspects clearly knew it. The officer was referring to the married couple that has been arrested for the incident. They were charged with felony animal cruelty. By Perry’s estimate, the dog’s agony and suffering did not just happen overnight; she says evidence points to the dog being neglected for about 4 to 6 months. Some concerned citizen gave Animal Services the tip about poor Bella.
The dog was stuck on a piece of carpet almost like she had been glued to it, according to Marti Ryan of Hillsborough Animal Services. The dog was very weak when she was rescued, and required lots of medical care. And as for her golden coat, only a few parts of it remained. The dog’s body weight had dropped to 34.6 pounds, which should be around 50 to 55 pounds for a normal 1-year old Golden Lab mix. The skin of Bella was also scabbed and completely irritated due to the scabs, as well as probable previous neglect and mistreatment.
If you wish, you can see Bella and the TV report at this link. However, be prepared to be sickened and thoroughly disgusted by the sight.
Animal Services rescued Bella from a home in the Valrico community, and additionally confiscated a black and white female cat, to avoid future incidents of animal neglect and maltreatment. Ryan says that they did not want the cat to end up like Bella, suffering the same kind of pain and abuse.
According to what they have found so far, apparently the dog was stuck to the carpet for a long period, while her owners just ate dinner with the dog in view, not minding her, and letting her suffer. Fortunately for Bella, she was also visible from outside the house, which is probably how someone finally noticed and then notified authorities.
Perry described Bella’s skin as constantly itching, swollen and very painful. Even her limbs were swollen. And also according to her, the owners claim they tried various home remedies for the dog, but just gave up. However, the couple was financially stable enough to get veterinary care, as evidenced by the fact they had just bought a new motorcycle. Looks like Bella wasn’t important in their scheme of things.
Fortunately, with the help of Hillsborough Animal Services, Bella’s fate has changed, and she is receiving the necessary help and medical care.
And as for Bella and the cat, Animal Services are now waiting for foster homes for them, and in the future, hopefully, they can finally get permanent owners, to be loved, nourished, and not be mistreated like worthless beings.
Ryan says that we should all be sensitive to situations where pets may be suffering neglect and similar fates as Bella, since animals are unlike us and cannot simply call for help.
The couple could be sentenced with up to 5 years of imprisonment if they are convicted of the offense. Sounds to me like this is insufficient — the laws need to be a lot stronger with longer prison terms for this kind of neglect. The way courts are nowadays, they’ll probably get 30 days suspended sentence, and a few token hours of public service, if that.
Anybody want to make some more guesses as to how little time, if any, this couple ends up serving, assuming they are even found guilty? Share your thoughts below.
I was surprised when I came across this article. My wife was the office who responded to this call and found Bella in the horrific condition that she was in. After Bella was removed from the residence, she spent a week in the ICU at the Vet. After the week, we took her in and have had her ever since. I’m very pleased to report that she is living a very spoiled life with us and is part of the pack..Shes a very playful dog and loves her walks/runs. She will always have the scars from how sever her condition was, but her fur has grown in quite well.
Wish they would name these awful people. We have a right to know so that we can spread the word. Felony animal abuse, next stop felony child abuse.
These people don’t ever deserve to get any animals,T consider them animals and the dog a person. I believe in carma and what goes around comes around, and they will get what they deserve.Then they’ll say to them selves, why did this happen to us, we never did anything wrong.Whatever people do to animals any kind of animal, they deserve the same treament in return rspecially worse if their being abused in anyway. God forbid if I see anyone abusing an animal, I assure you you’ll regret it big time.
This article was posted in Sept of 2012. Does anyone in the local or state of Fla have an update on Bella’s condition or what kind of sentences the evil couple ended up receiving? If anything else I hope those people incurred substantial legal fees. Someone had to have visited that home in the 4-6 months she suffered, Shame on every coward who walked to their door.
I love my pets and treat them like they are my kids. I hope that the people that had bella get life in jail but they will not. I really hope that you found a good loving home for bella and the cat and I glad u guys save the cat and bella from those people
How about this for punishment? We all know any Judge will probably give them a light tap on the wrist, so why not huge blow-up pictures of this poor animal as she was found and then make both of these heathens sit in front of the busiest intersection in town all day, every weekend for a year? If people throw rotten tomatoes or eggs at them, so much the better. And if they miss a day, a week would be added to the punishment. And they should have a sign that reads “This is how I treat my pets”.
It is frightening to know that people like this are in the same universe I am…how does one live when they were apparently not born with a heart…there has got to be severe mental problems with both of them to be able to watch this unfold and do nothing… I sincerely think people that are cruel in this manner do have mental issues and are scarey… their punishment should be an example and warning to others…the poster couple for this type of crime…with jail, a huge financial fine, mental examinations and be put on some sort of a piblic list of abusers so their shame is documented and readily available… a reason for anyone else to think twice before they are so cruel. I hope that whoever gets these animal, especially the pooch, has the love and patience to help her trust and over come the memories of her first year of life.
Bella’s so called guardians should get the maximum sentence. They should be an example for others who think they can get away with abusing animals.
Animal abusers do not belong in society. Take them out.
I sure hope child protective services keeps these 2 on their radar should they decide to procreate. The child wouldn’t have a chance!
A corrupt DEA poisoned my dog to death, sent death threats and started to use gang members to harass me because I called the San Francisco Attorney General’s office to complain that the FBI and DEA where fabricating evidence and stealing from me.
I have a new dog and hope that by making the public aware of what happened, he is not poisoned as well.
The FBI and DEA are cowards.
I’ll be damned. Lucky for you in the States, people still get arrested for this kind of cruelty. Back home the SPCA have no such luck. Why bother to arrest such people and waste money on court cases. I’m a law enforcement officer myself and my remedy is : SHOOT THE BASTARDS.
please treat this animals like god gift bcoz aap kuch bhi galat karoge ye nahi bata payenge pls love them bahut saara aapke childrens may answer u in a wrong way but ye kabhi reverse reply nahi karenge plz i request mere bachhon ko bahu pyar dijiye ye bahut pyare hote hein they need love aur kuch nahi maangte
I agree with every comment here and hope with all my heart that Bella gets the life she deserves.
It never ceases to amaze me how some people treat their dogs/cats, or any animal they have that loves them and trusts those people to take care of them. I have three dogs and they are spoiled to the max! I would never ever consider neglecting/abusing one, or all, of them. The people that treated Bella like this should be treated the same way…..and in a jail cell! They also should NOT ever be allowed to have any kind of pet, ever again. If they did it once, they will probably do the same thing again. The authorities need to do more than a slap on the wrist….something that says “if you mistreat any animal, you will be prosecuted and sent to jail”.
I was just horrified at some of the stories I read on animal abuse. The law protecting these sweet innocent animals has to change & change fast. Animal abusers need to prosecuted & do jail time like any child abuser. There’s no difference in this kind of abuse.
Just looked at her fb page, yeah i agree with some of the other people, new bike, kids dressed like thugs, and this poor dog laying there for for 4-6 months. I hope the get the charges they deserve and social services should check in on those kids. The person who said about an ant hill, GREAT!!!! they should be fined to the max also and not allowed to ever ever own a dog again including their children cause God knows kids follow what their parents do.
glue them to the carpet so they cant move go to the bathroom or eat or drink and leave them there.
I have a nine year old golden lab who was found in a similar situation, but she was outside in a rural area where not too many people would notice her. It took alot of money and vet bills to get her back up to normal – 70 pounds, but she is the sweetest, most loveable well mannered dog in the world. She loves all people and other animals, etc. It still blows my mind how someone could throw away such a good dog like yesterday’s newspaper.
I’m so sick of the lenient laws regarding animal cruelty. These people should be in jail PERIOD!! They are sick and evil and I’m tired of nothing substantial being done to these kind of people. Thank God someone saw this poor creature and had the common sense and compassion to report it.
Oh MY God such cruelty , so despicable an act of in humanity,may God bless and keep Bella safe,she deserves a much better life than this.Wish her a speedy recovery and a new life.I would take her if it was possible but i live in Washington so i don’t think this would be possible.
THEY SHOULD TAKE THERE NEW MOTORCYCLE AND SELL IT TO PAY FOR BELLAS VET CARE AND THEY SHOULD BE GIVEN THE SAME TREATMENT,,,,I HOPE THAT THEY GET THE MAXIMUM SENTENCE… WHAT PIECES OF SHIT WORTHLESS HUMAN BEINGS THESE PEOPLE ARE….I HOPE THEY GET ALL THE KARMA THEY DESERVE…
A better idea would be to confiscate the bike and let animal lovers whack it for $10 a whack with a sledge hammer while the owners are made to watch the whacking. I would buy 10 whacks just to see their faces when I destroy the bike.
Found out that the husband has been arrested for domestic violence. Seems like a fine upstanding member of the community here. Well anyway, the authorities have charged them with a felony. Hope that sticks.
It is a good thing that some people are willing to step up and report things like this.It sounds like the dog did not have much time left.I do hope it wasn’t to late.Glad they took the cat too.They should get more time in jail as well as a money fine,sell the motorcycle.Seems they care more about that than their animals. No more animals ever for those two.
This couple should be put away for a very long time. Poor Bella…I bet she
laid there wondering why those that she loved didn’t love her back. My heart
breaks for this dog. Thank goodness for the person who reported it abuse.
That person is a hero.
Hang them by their skin and nail them to the floor for 4-6 months
Hang em…How can you do this to an animal..The law has to changed nail them to the carpet and see how they like it…jail for life some of a bitches………….
hang em. they don’t deserve to breathe the same air as the rest of us.
Someone should go to their home and glue them to the carpet for a couple of months at least. Eye for an eye… Disgusting…
Amen to that suggestion
I could barely look at the picture of this poor dog. Does this dog need a home? I will give him a good life. I hope the ones that are responsible for this get more than a slap on the wrist. God love this dog:)
It’s a shame no one noticed her earlier before she got this bad. My heart goes out to her and I hope she finds a wonderful home – the cat too. I wish I knew why some people did this to animals
How dare them, how dare those people….
That’s just heartwrenching. I agree that there will be no substantial punitive consequences to their abusive actions. They’ll do some community service and there will unfortunately be no restrictions imposed upon them for adopting more animals. My heart aches for Bella and the next animal(s) that gets placed in their “care.” Hope they continue to keep their blinds open so the neighbor can save the next animal too. Not being negative, just realistic.
My heart breaks for poor Bella. Thank God for the concerned citizen and the
Hillsborough Animal Control Services. Lawmakers need to get it through their thick heads that people who abuse animals will most definitely become abusive to other people or animals in their life. It sickens me that courts do not make people serve the maximum sentence for any crime. I hope Bella will find a loving home and that she will be a happy dog for the rest of her life. People who do not see animals as living, breathing, and feeling creatures such as Bella have no place on this earth as far as I’m concerned.
Exactly! I couldn’t have said it better.
I think people who continue to commit these crimes against animals are heartless monsters. Let them rot in jail.
Tip from a concerned citizen … how rare these days.
Estimated 4-6 months of cruelty should be rewqarded with 4-6 months of community service, cash fine, banned from animal ownersip, and added to an animal cruelty register BY NAME so that all will know them for what they are, abusers. if such z registry does not exist, this would be a good place to start.
This is one married couple who should NEVER have children.