Officials want help finding dog abuser

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SAN DIEGO – The County Department of Animal Services is asking the public for help in finding the person responsible for using rubber bands as a muzzle on a poodle.

“The most serious of the injuries are to the left side of the face; they are the deepest and most penetrating wounds. The cut goes across the bridge of her nose and wraps around to the right side," said David Johnson with the County's Department of Animal Services. “This magnitude is pretty significant, we normally don’t see things of this nature.”

A resident found the dog in the 2900 block of Ocean View Boulevard in Logan Heights on Saturday and contacted animal services.

An animal control officer responded and found the adult female white poodle with several rubber bands around the muzzle.

The rubber bands were on the dog's muzzle so tightly she suffered severe injuries, said the officer.

The dog was taken to the department’s animal care facility on Gaines Street, where veterinary staff removed the rubber bands and treated the dog’s injuries.

The rubber bands had been on the dog for so long that the bands had cut all the way down to the bones in the dog’s muzzle.

“This may have been some sick attempt to keep this sweet dog from barking,” stated Dawn Danielson, the Director of Animal Services.  “However, their actions have caused this poor dog to suffer horrendous pain for a very long time.”

Based upon the seriousness of the dog’s injuries, the department has started an animal abuse investigation.

Animal Services is seeking any information as to who may own the dog or any information leading to the identity of the person who committed the crime.  People with information are asked to call the department’s patrol supervisors at Gaines Street at 619-767-2740 or Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.

If convicted of animal cruelty, a suspect could face up to three years in prison, a fine of up to $20,000 or both.

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