Shelter seeks justice for abused animals
By LPR Staff
The staff of Lockhart and Caldwell County animal services often have a wonderful job for animal lovers: caring for and finding loving homes for abused, neglected or abandoned animals.
However, from time to time they are faced with situations that are so shocking and sad they outweigh the good.
One such instance hap
pened last week when a concerned Lockhart resident delivered an injured puppy to the shelter.
The dog was found on Guadilamar Street in Lockhart with a deep wound on her back from her shoulders to her tail. She had no tags, and the woman who found her had no idea who she belonged to.
After she was delivered to the shelter, the puppy, named Kylie, was taken to a local veterinarian, who determined that her wounds were caused by a chemical burn. She was later also found to have intestinal worms.
“Cause for Paws is going to pay for her medical treatment to get the wound cleaned out and have her stitched up,” Animal Services Director Cheryl Schneider said. “When she”s well, she will be available for adoption at the shelter.”
Kylie is one of hundreds of dogs who come to the Lockhart-Caldwell County Animal Shelter each year many of whom are victims of abuse.
In this case, Schneider said, there was no way to tell whether the injuries were caused from direct abuse, or simply from neglectful supervision and a lack of medical attention. Either way, Schneider hopes to pursue charges if the dog”s owner is ever found.
“At the worst, if it was specifically done, that could be a felony charge,” she said. “At best, it was an accident and they just didn”t get her any medical attention. That”s still neglect.”
Schneider said a charge of neglect was a misdemeanor, punishable by either a fine or jail time or both.
Under the Texas Penal Code, “acts of cruelty or torture to animals” can be tried as felony offenses punishable by up to two years in jail or $10,000 in fines. Misdemeanor animal cruelty can be punished with jail time or fines not to exceed $2,000, or both.
Steven Golla of Chishom Trail Veterinary Clinic treats most of the dogs who come to the Lockhart-Caldwell County Animal Shelter injured.
“We”re lucky in this case,” Golla said of Kylie on Tuesday. “So often, they come in here and there”s nothing we can do for them. This time, there”s something we can do for her and she”s going to be okay.”
Despite her injuries, Golla”s staff said that Kylie is a sweet, well-mannered dog who should make a full recovery.
Cause for Paws, a non-profit organization to benefit the shelter, pays for Golla”s services, and the services of the other veterinarians in Caldwell County that provide treatment for the shelter”s animals using donations from the community.
Anyone with information relating to this incident or any incident of animal cruelty is encouraged to contact the Lockhart Police Department at (512) 398-4401.
To make a donation to Cause for Paws, or to receive information about adopting Kylie or any of the shelter”s other animals, contact Schneider at (512) 398-7320.