Warning: This story contains graphic images.
Animal cruelty charges have been laid against Anderson Joe and Melissa Tooshley of Duncan in what the B.C. SPCA is calling "one of the most profoundly shocking and disturbing cases of abuse we have ever witnessed."
SPCA officials seized an emaciated, chained dog in critical distress Feb. 16.
“We received a report of a dog in distress and when the constables arrived at the property they found a medium-sized brown dog on a tether that was only a few inches long, standing in a large pile of mud and feces,” Chief Prevention and Enforcement Officer for the B.C. SPCA Marcie Moriarty said in a release.
“As they got closer there was an overpowering stench and they realized that not only was the dog severely emaciated, but his collar was deeply embedded into his neck, causing massive infection.”
The SPCA says constables had to use bolt cutters to free the dog and immediately rushed it to to a veterinary clinic.
Moriarty added the dog's head had swollen up to three times its normal size.
The dog died from his injuries two days later.
“This kind of appalling neglect and cruelty is sickening and absolutely unacceptable in our society,” Moriarty said.
Joe and Tooshley face a maximum penalty of up to five years in prison if convicted, along with a $10,000 fine and up to a lifetime ban on owning animals.