(UPDATE: AWL lab tech Libby Flock confirmed to Stacey Page this afternoon that the male German Shepherd removed from a Burket home yesterday tested negative for the parvovirus. The puppy is up and eating today and appears to be “happy,” but no additional information is being provided because the case remains under investigation.)
A German Shepherd puppy is slowly recovering today as investigators move forward with an investigation of possible animal cruelty.
Sgt. Chad Hill of the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department told StaceyPageOnline.com today that a necropsy has been ordered on one of the German Shepherd puppies that was found dead and extremely emaciated at a Burket home over the weekend. (See related story and video)
“We’re not animal experts,” said Sgt. Hill, “so we are letting an expert, a veterinarian, rule out any possibilities of strangulation by the ropes that they were tied with – not that we are saying that happened – or parvo, or anything else. I know people want us to act on this now, but we have to be careful and make sure we have all the facts. We have to see if animal cruelty charges can be filed.”
Patrick Jamison went to his neighbor’s property at 107 E. Center St., Burket, on Sunday and took video of the two puppies he said were being neglected and starved. On Sunday night, he returned to the property and found one of the puppies deceased and the other beginning to consume it. “They were starving!” Jamison insisted.
Laci Bailey resides at the home where the puppies were tied up in the backyard. The puppies only had access to a kiddie pool filled with green water. A nearby food dish was empty except for a small amount of water. A shelter for the dogs was out of the puppies reach.
This morning, Bailey spoke with StaceyPageOnline.com and flatly said, “My neighbor doesn’t know what he’s talking about. None of his facts are right!”
She said she got the puppies – Malinko, the surviving male, and Cali, the now deceased female – about two months ago. A photo on her Facebook page shows her with Malinko. The photo was first posted on July 22.
Bailey claimed she put food and water out for the puppies every night when she got home from work. “I’m home daily to feed and water them, but every time I have a dog in Burket something happens,” she said. “I’m told Parvo is in the ground and you can’t get rid of it.”
She said she never noticed any problems with the puppies. In fact, as recent as Friday night she said she had the puppies inside her home and they were “running around and playing and seemed fine.” Bailey also noted she just thought German Shepherds were thin dogs.
“I love animals and (Jamison) doesn’t know what he’s talking about.” But she admitted she never took the puppies to a veterinarian because “they were up to date on their shots … I’m not an animal cruelty person and if I would’ve notice; it was probably parvo and hit when I was gone.”
Bailey recalled feeding the puppies Sunday night and when she returned Monday evening the puppies were gone. Jamison, however, took video of the puppies Sunday afternoon and found one of the puppies deceased late Sunday night. Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department deputy Joel Poppenfoose was also at the house at approximately 11 p.m. Sunday and photographed the animals and the environment. Animal control officer Jerry Clase went to the house Monday afternoon and took possession of the deceased dog and the surviving puppy.
Bailey said she filled the kiddie pool with fresh water daily and said “maybe the sun” turned it green. “I don’t know what happened.” She could not explain why the food dish had what appeared to be some pooled water in it but no food and reasoned, “There’s a lot of kids in my neighborhood and they go through my yard all the time. I don’t know.”
She also said she was feeding the puppies Black Gold dog food and added, “You can’t force them to eat. Apparently Parvo hits like that!” Bailey added, “I have a Mastiff that had it and lost like 20 pounds in a day.” She still has the Mastiff and estimated it was treated for parvovirus by a veterinarian in Silver Lake 5 months ago.
According to the ASPCA, the general symptoms of parvovirus are “lethargy, severe vomiting, loss of appetite and bloody, foul-smelling diarrhea that can lead to life-threatening dehydration.” In Jamison’s video, there are no indications either of the dogs had vomitted and there is an absence of feces. Bailey responded, “I have kids. I clean up after the dogs. I go out and pick up the feces.”
Darla McCammon of the Animal Welfare League of Kosciusko County, told StaceyPageOnline.com Monday afternoon that the puppy was brought to the shelter “in an extreme state of starvation. We are in the critical 24-hour period,” she said at that time, noting the puppy was getting fluids every few hours and being treated by a veterinarian.
In his claims to StaceyPageOnline.com, Jamison said he has seen other dogs suffer similar fates in Bailey’s care. He recalled two full-blooded Weimaraner dogs that were bred in 2008, and said they were in the same “starved” condition as the German Shepherd puppies. He said he believed the dogs died. There was also what he believed was a Chow that was starved, then dumped several miles away. “That one I picked up, took it back and chained it back up,” he said. But Bailey disagreed.
She explained that she did have two Weimaraners that did breed, but it was not intentional. “I was feeding them Pedigree dog food that I found out had a recall on it for Salmonella. The vet said the female died because she had puppies and her immune system was weakened from that so she was more susceptible.” The Pedigree dog food recall was in 2011.
Bailey added, “And (Jamison) doesn’t know what he’s talking about! The male (Weimaraner) I took with me when I moved to a house on SR 14. He got out and got hit by a semi. And I never had a Chow, he has his facts wrong.”
Bailey said she plans to go to the Animal Welfare League today to inquire about getting Malinko back. “If not, maybe they’ll at least let me see him,” she stated.