The New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) rescued an emaciated puppy and two other dogs on New Year’s Eve in central New Jersey after a municipal animal control officer refused because it was a holiday weekend and stated there was no room at the local shelter.
The puppy, described as “skin and bones” and two dogs had been abandoned and left for dead in an apartment when they were discovered by the landlord. The NJ SPCA responded after the landlord told authorities he couldn’t get any response from the local animal control. According to N.J.com, the dogs were in need of immediate veterinary attention, and it wasn’t until Frank Rizzo, chief of the SPCA’s law enforcement division, threatened the local animal control office with criminal charges if they did not care for the dogs that the municipal department responded. Rizzo posted the following public statement:
“SPCA staff found this response completely unacceptable and reminded the ACO (animal control officer) that as a full-time employee with a salary and benefits, the ACO is mandated by state law to provide animal control services 24 hours a day, seven days a week,”
The undernourished puppy is reported to be doing better; the other two dogs are healthy and have been placed in a shelter.
An investigation is now underway to find the dogs’ owner who will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. The SPCA has not named the town or county where the dogs were found.
(Photo of puppy courtesy of NJ SPCA)
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