The discovery of a dog that appeared to have suffered chemical burns over 80 percent of his body has prompted a small rescue organization to offer a $5,000 reward for information in the case.
“In all my years of doing rescue, I’ve seen a lot of things but I’ve never seen a dog in such horrific condition,” said Rachel Farmer, president and director of Boston Buddies, a rescue group dedicated to saving terriers in LA, Ventura, Orange, Kern and Santa Barbara counties.
“How anybody can do this is just beyond me,” Farmer added.
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Dubbed Henry by Farmer and her rescuers, the dog was found in El Monte. His microchip is registered to a location in the Midwest.
Authorities said it was not immediately clear exactly what happened to the emaciated Boston Terrier who was dropped off at a Baldwin park shelter after hours on May 29. He was euthanized the next day.
The dog’s muscles were showing through his skin in multiple places and he had ulcers on the verge of rupturing in his eyes and paws. He was hypothermic and unable to stand.
During her daily shelter check, Farmer came across the pup – probably 8 to 10 years old – and immediately made a commitment to adopt him, unaware of how dire his condition was.
“We had no idea what was happening when we came to pick up this dog,” she said. “We were told he had a skin condition.”
Within hours, veterinarians at the Baldwin Park shelter told Farmer they needed to put him down.
A volunteer rushed to the shelter to pick up the dog, and “had to listen to him cry in the car the whole way to the vet,” Farmer said.
A second veterinarian told Farmer was no way Henry could survive in his condition and said the dog may have been burned by chemicals, but without knowing the dog’s history, it’s impossible to know for certain.
An officer from the LA County Department of Animal Care and Control is investigating what happened to Henry, said Capt. Aaron Reyes, deputy director with the agency.
Tests are underway to determine if the dog suffered chemical burns or if he had a severe skin condition.
Boston Buddies is an all-volunteer organization but is offering $5,000 for information leading to an arrest in the case, if it’s determined that Henry was harmed by a human.
If someone is found guilty of intentionally harming the dog, they could face between one to five years in jail, or between $1,000 and $20,000 in fines.