In Nottoway, Virginia, an animal control officer, whose position expected him to properly care and protect animals, was found guilty of animal cruelty. On Monday, Raymond Merkh, who had been the director for the Nottoway County Animal Shelter, was found guilty of leaving a kitten untreated for five days after the animal had been hit by a car.
According to WncnNews, a shelter volunteer offered to take the kitten to a vet after finding it languishing close to death in the litter box in its cage.The little kitten was diagnosed with a badly infected leg wound, a fractured pelvis, and nerve damage to his bladder and rectum. She was not able to urinate or stand and needed emergency veterinarian care, but none had been provided. Sadly, the orange tabby had to be humanely euthanized by veterinarians. Merkh, 55, also faced charges of animal cruelty involving three abandoned puppies of which two of the pups died. Those charges were dropped when the judge agreed there wasn’t enough time to save their lives as the puppies were near death when found. The felony charge surrounding the neglect of the kitten was reduced to a misdemeanor; Merkh was fined $250.
Commonwealth’s Attorney Terry Royall stated this conviction was a success, since this was the first time in Virginia an animal control officer was held responsible for not taking care of the animals he was bound to protect. Merkh is no longer employed at the shelter.
Merkh faces related animal cruelty charges involving a Jack Russell terrier who was left untreated. That dog also had to be euthanized.
(Photo of animal control officer screenshot of booking photo)
Follow the Pet Rescue Report on Facebook.