Dog ‘Buddy’ intentionally set on fire by child slowly healing and still just as loveable

Just two weeks ago, a friendly dog returned to his home in Senatobia, Mississippi with an extension cord around his neck; his face blackened, his fur burned off, blinded and completely charred.

The Labrador retriever, who had been discovered in shock on Peavine Road in Tate County on April 22, had been set on fire and his face was a blackened mess. Just days later, the Tate County’s Sheriff’s Office released a statement that a child under the age of 12 had purposely set Buddy on fire, but no criminal charges could be pursued because of his age.

Had the child been at least 13, he would have faced felony animal cruelty charges with a punishment up to three years in prison. Animal advocates across the country were furious. No details have been released as to what, if any consequences the child has faced for such an evil deed.

The Tunica Humane Society has been caring for Buddy, and although they are just as frustrated that no charges can be filed against the child, the volunteers and staff choose to concentrate more on Buddy’s rehabilitation.

On Sunday, Buddy’s condition was updated and his prognosis continues to look more promising. His skin grafts performed on Friday are doing well. The swelling in his face continues to decrease, and he is “beginning to look like a dog again.” It is also possible Buddy may be able to see.

Some burns have surfaced on his front leg, and he will be required to wear a boot to help healing, but Buddy is loving his walks outdoors and of course is lapping up the attention everyone at Mississippi State shows him. His veterinarian said Buddy wags his tail constantly, eats well and continues to improve even though he is still heavily medicated for pain control.

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