Cedar Rapids Rescue Dog Hospitalized After Foster Home Abuse
If you're looking for a story to get your blood boiling, you've found it. A local rescue dog was recently hospitalized after being abused in her foster home.
Tilly, a 5-year-old female Staffordshire terrier mix, was rushed to the Eastern Iowa Veterinary Specialty Center after suffering injurues consistent with blunt force trauma. She was admitted with internal bleeding and head trauma, which resulted in emergency surgery. The surgery found that she had a ruptured spleen that had to be removed, and she also needed a blood transfusion, two plasma transfusions, and multiple autotransfusions. Despite all of this she is a trooper and expected to recover, although her long-term prognosis is still unclear.
According to the Gazette, Tilly came to Iowa three years ago from a rescue organization in Arkansas. She is owned by Last Hope Animal Rescue, but was placed in the foster care of 61-year-old Dennis Greene of Marion. The incident that left Tilly in the hospital occurred on Saturday, September 15. When Last Hope Animal Rescue was notified of the incident, they contacted local law enforcement immediately and were met at the scene by officers where Greene admitted to having kicked the dog.
If that doesn't make you sick enough, Greene was cited and charged with animal abuse, which, unfortunately in Iowa isn't a felony. You see, animal abuse in Iowa is typically a simple misdemeanor. In this case, Greene has been charged with an aggravated misdemeanor, which is punishable with up to two years in prison.
To put into perspective just how bad Iowa's animal cruelty laws are-- we rank 49th in the nation for our animal protection laws. In my opinion, we've got to do better. This dog has been through enough as it is, being in rescue organizations for years just looking for that forever family to love her. And just when she gets a glimpse of a home, THIS is how she gets treated.
How can we help? According to the press release, "The 2018 Iowa Legislative session presented the opportunity to improve companion animal cruelty laws, however the session ultimately ended with bill SF2181 not being passed. The bill was supported by the Iowa Veterinary Medical Association, several law enforcement leaders and county attorneys who regularly deal with animal abuse and neglect cases. In spite of the bill's explicit focus on criminal neglect and abuse of non-livestock animals, it was ultimately undermined by commercial dog breeder and agricultural interests."
If you want to help change things for animals in Iowa, contact your local state representative and state senator (find yours here) and explain your disappointment with Iowa's animal protection laws. It's sad that there are people out there that would abuse animals, but we need to combat this by making improving animal laws in Iowa a PRIORITY. Animals like Tilly deserve justice too.