“When we arrived, we located an older male, white and brown chihuahua that had a lot of tumors covering the entirety of his body,” said Erica Duplan, animal control officer with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.
Duplan said they received a call Thursday from someone reporting a dog possibly dumped at Kelsey Campground.
“We do believe he may have been abandoned there at the campground on Aug. 2,” Duplan said.
She said she nicknamed the animal “Little Dog,” which was found with no collar or microchip.
Tumors completely covered his body, making it difficult to handle him because of how much pain he appeared to be in, she said.
“The amount of tumors on the dog are very severe and very bad. It’s the worst I’ve seen in the six years I have worked here,” Duplan said.
Investigators are going through the list of different vehicles and names of people who were logged into the campground during the time the dog was found there.
“We want to know why the dog was left there, and we want to remind people, if you can’t care for your pet, take it to a vet or shelter so we can care for it,” Duplan said.
Officials believe the dog was dumped because of how remote the area is and because he could hardly walk, so traveling would have been difficult.
“If he were to walk, he wouldn’t be able to get very far, that’s why we believe he was dumped there,” Duplan said.
If the owners are found, they could face a series of charges.
“They could be facing abonnement and cruelty charges, and the severity of the dog, the tumors, it seems it progressed so much the dog hasn’t had medical care in a long time, and that would be something we could be pursuing neglect charges with,” Duplan said.
The dog was taken to a vet for treatment, but Duplan said his condition is so severe that they are not sure if he will survive.
“It was unlikely he would have survived another few nights,” she said.