The police have confirmed they are investigating a case of animal cruelty after two teenagers apparently admitted to cutting off the ears of a young cross pit bull terrier to make him look more vicious.
The Animal Welfare Society of South Africa (AWS) opened a case against them this week after the one-year-old dog, Cooper, was brought to them in a mutilated state at the end of last month.
AWS spokesperson Allan Perrin told News24 the pair, aged 17 and 19, were from Portlands in Mitchells Plain.
“We suspect that they bound his mouth shut with tape … hobbled him and used brute force and their bodyweight to prevent him from fighting back and escaping,” he said.
Cooper’s ears were then hacked off, apparently without any form of anaesthetic. Only the tips remained.
AWS senior inspector Mark Levendal said when Cooper was brought in, he was bloodstained around the head and ears.
“Blue nylon suture material was present at the time. The dog was immediately admitted into our hospital care.
“While interviewing the alleged offender, he admitted to me he had cut both ears of the dog with a large scissors while being assisted by his friend. No anaesthetic was used during this procedure.”
Levendal said both willingly submitted sworn affidavits to this effect.
Western Cape police spokesperson Sergeant Noloyiso Rwexana confirmed an animal cruelty case had been registered at the Mitchells Plain police station.
“No one has been arrested so far.”
Animal lovers were shocked and outraged, calling for those responsible to be harshly punished.
One woman said: “Thank goodness he has found human kindness and hopefully soon a wonderful home. It’s time these heartless people get severely punished. It has to stop.”
Another commented: “Please make sure they get a heavy fine, not a suspended sentence! No one takes animal cruelty serious in this country because it is always the same, a fine or a suspended sentence.”
The AWS said Cooper was thankfully on the mend “and will never be a vicious dog”, adding he would soon be transferred to the adoption centre to find his forever home.
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