February 5, 2016
A North Carolina-based animal rescue is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person responsible for an Anderson County, South Carolina dog being shot and blinded, Fox Carolina News reported February 3.
Amara, a 2-year-old boxer, was found wandering in Townville a few days ago following a gunshot wound to her head. The injury didn’t kill her but it left her blind and injured her sinus cavity. Amara was taken to PAWS Animal Shelter in Anderson County on Thursday after being found on Mystic Cove Lane. A reporter with Anderson Independent Mail spoke with shelter director Jessica Cwynar, who stated
“She came in really underweight — close to emaciated— and had sores around her head. It was hard to tell what the sores were from, but we thought at first that it might just be from exposure to the elements. We put her on a high-calorie diet right away and that helped. But there was swelling in her face that wasn’t going away.”
The shelter enlisted the help of Heidi Wagner of Boxer Butts and Other Mutts in Arden.Unfortunately, one bullet severed her optic nerve, blinding her and damaging her hearing.
It’s believed Amara was bred multiple times then discarded when she could no longer reproduce. At only 34 pounds, Amara is severely underweight. Heidi believes Amara’s condition has worsened over time, with the gunshot wound being the final act of abuse against this poor dog. Her goal is to give Amara a new life.
The Anderson County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the case. No arrests have been made and anyone with information is asked to contact them at (864)260-4400.
In a February 3 Facebook post, Heidi described how frightened Amara is of men
“I have a feeling you are a male because when a male talks to her she will drop her head and give a little growl until I reassure her that it is okay, because nobody will ever hurt her again. It took 10 minutes with my husband softly petting her for her to realize that he was not going to hurt her and then she curled up in his lap to fall asleep.”
Recently, the FBI made it a felony to abuse an animal. Punishing abusers will be a slow process until animal advocates speak out to ensure those who harm an animal receive the highest punishment allowed by law. Until stricter laws are created and enforced, more dogs like Amara will be injured or killed. South Carolina has some of the most lax animal cruelty laws in the country. In an interview with Fox Carolina News, Heidi stated
“It’s one of the worst cases. Knowing what this dog has been through, you probably could have knocked me over with a feather in the emergency room when they told me she had been shot in the head.”
As of February 6, one bullet is lodged in the right side of Amara’s cheek, but she’s too weak at this time to undergo surgery. Donations are being accepted directly through the vet at Mills River Animal Clinic. Their number is 828-891-9685.