The Humane Society of the United States
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Reward offered in animal cruelty case in Washington County, Maryland

Media Contact:  Alison Shapiro: ashapiro@humanesociety.org; 301-721-6472

The Humane Society of the United States is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the apparent abandonment of a seriously neglected and ill puppy in Hagerstown, Maryland.  ­­­­­­­­­

The Case:  On the evening of July 11, Humane Society of Washington County Field Services responded to an urgent call for help for a puppy in distress. A citizen found an approximately 6-7 week old puppy, wrapped in a blanket, and abandoned in the wood line behind the Target store in Hagerstown, Maryland (17213 Cole Road). She was covered in fly eggs and had large amounts of them inside her nostrils and around her mouth. She was completely emaciated and barely moving. Officer Isaac Mowery rushed her to Mountain View Animal Emergency. The diagnosis was starvation and parasites, and treatment was started immediately. She was transferred to HSWC’s Veterinary Center for further care. Thursday morning, her condition deteriorated as she was too weak to eat or drink for herself. HSWC Veterinary Staff spent hours stabilizing her, and staff completed a blood transfusion in an attempt to save her life. She is making some progress, but still requires round the clock monitoring and care.  Staff have named her Hope.

Animal Cruelty:  Getting the serious attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and residents in cases involving allegations of cruelty to animals is an essential step in protecting the community. The connection between animal cruelty and human violence is well documented. Studies show a correlation between animal cruelty and all manner of other crimes, from narcotics and firearms violations to battery and sexual assault.

Emily Hovermale, the Humane Society of the United States’ Maryland state director said: “It takes a truly callous person to neglect a puppy and then abandon her to die. We hope our reward will bring someone forward with information on the person(s) responsible for this cruel abandonment.”

The Investigators:  Humane Society of Washington County, an independent entity unaffiliated with the HSUS, is investigating, and anyone with information should contact HSWC’s Field Services team at 301-733-2060 x203.

Resources:  The HSUS’ Animal Cruelty Campaign raises public awareness and educates communities about the connection between animal cruelty and human violence while providing a variety of resources to law enforcement agencies, social work professionals, educators, legislators and families. We offer rewards in animal cruelty cases across the country and works to strengthen laws against animal cruelty.

HSUS doubled its standard cruelty reward from $2,500 to $5,000 thanks to a generous donation from a board member. HSWC is also offering a reward of $400 for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the individual(s) responsible for this cruel act. To see information on statistics, trends, laws and animal cruelty categories, click here.  

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