The Humane Society of the United States is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person responsible for abandoning a dog in a port-a-potty at a construction site on Pecan Point Drive in Brunswick.
“If anyone knows anything they can step forward anonymously,” said Tiffani Hill, Glynn County Animal Control manager. “We’d really like to bring justice to (dog) Rusty and send the message that this kind of thing is not acceptable.”
Anyone with relevant information is asked to call the Glynn County Animal Shelter at 912-554-7501, the Glynn County Police Department’s Silent Witness hotline at 912-264-1333 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
“We hope our reward helps find the person or persons who committed this despicable act,” Debra Berger, Georgia state director for the Humane Society of the United States, said in a statement.
The $5,000 reward is double the usual reward the organization offers, according to a statement from the Humane Society, thanks to a generous donation from a board member.
This may be the first time a reward has been offered for an animal cruelty-related offense in Glynn County, Hill said.
Animal control officers are investigating the matter and intend to press charges.
A Glynn County woman found the abandoned dog Sunday afternoon while walking her own dog, said Lynn Stephens with No Kill Glynn County.
“From what I understand from her, the wind blew (the port-a-potty door) open and her dog was trying to get into it,” Stephens said.
The construction crew had not been on-site for around a week and given the dog’s already poor health and the conditions inside, Hill said he likely could not have survived 24 hours there.
“Rusty was in a wire crate, he was agonal, meaning he was lying on his side and unable to move,” Hill said. “He was very malnourished and unable to move. The temperature was about 130 degrees inside the port-a-potty.”
Malnourishment takes time, she explained. Rusty probably had health problems before he was locked in the port-a-potty. The longstanding health problems explain why the dog looks much older than it is. Hill said Rusty is probably around 5 years old but looks much older.
“A dog would not be able to get as emaciated as he was in a short period of time,” Hill said. “He’d been without food for some time.”
Based on the circumstances of the crime, Hill said the culprit likely lives nearby.
“Where the port-a-potty is located, it’s on a cul-de-sac back in a neighborhood and you’d have to know about the construction going on back there,” Hill said.
Care of Rusty was handed over to No Kill Glynn County for rehabilitation, Hill said. The animal control shelter lacked the resources to provide the attention the dog needs.
Treatment was going to cost thousands of dollars, Stephens said.
Through the power of networking, she said WAGS Rescue of Pennsylvania agreed to pay for the necessary medical treatment and Karen Lasasso with New Jersey-based pet rescue group Animal Aid USA agreed to transport the dog from Georgia to New England.
“He’s already spoken for,” Stephens said. “They may already have (found a new home) because people have lined up to adopt him.”