Rescued Puppy Had Snout Bound

An abused 3-month-old terrier is now recovering at County Animal Services after being found abandoned late Wednesday night in Santee.

The puppy had injuries from what appeared to have been rubber bands or some other material that had been wrapped around his snout. The cuts from the bands were through the flesh on the dog’s snout. The little dog was brought to the animal care facility in Bonita where he was examined by medical staff and treated.

“There’s no question this puppy has been abused,” said County Animal Services Director Dan DeSousa “Perhaps it was a misguided attempt to stop the little dog from barking but  pet owners should not stoop to these steps as there are other options open to them like training.”

The person who called Animal Services said she was at a fast food restaurant when an orange Dodge Charger stopped nearby, paused for a second and then pulled away. The puppy ran away from the spot where the car had stopped and hid under another vehicle.

DeSousa says it appears the bands were removed from the dog’s snout several days before the puppy was found. The wounds are starting to heal and the six-and-a-half pound puppy did not have any other injuries.

The dog didn’t have any identification so he will be available for adoption. Special adoption applications are being accepted at the County’s three shelters until close of business Wednesday, Aug. 2. The applications can be dropped off or faxed to (619) 767-2706. The shelters are open Tuesday through Sunday 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Staff will review the applications and then decide the best home for the puppy.

Based upon the seriousness of the dog’s injuries, the department may start an animal abuse investigation. Anyone with information on the case can call the department at (619) 498-2305.  If convicted of animal cruelty, a suspect could face up to three years in prison, a fine of up to $20,000 or both.

Tracy DeFore is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact