CONTENT WARNING: This article contains pictures that some viewers may find disturbing.
ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — A Roanoke animal shelter says it has seen one of the worst cases of animal neglect/cruelty in a long time. Angels of Assisi took in a pooch earlier this week who was covered in fleas and “extremely malnourished.”
Angels of Assisi says the dog, ‘Charlotte,’ was brought into the shelter with four other puppies — all of whom were emaciated — on Tuesday, Nov. 9 by Craig County Animal Control.
Dayna Reynolds, a spokesperson for Angels of Assisi, says that Charlotte is anemic — likely from the fleas and the hookworms when she was brought in — and she has a large open wound on her back, as well as several others on the rest of her body. It is unknown whether those wounds were inflicted by a person or the result of improper care.
In addition, Charlotte reportedly has what appears to be a prior injury on her hind leg that did not heal correctly.
Reynolds says that the shelter takes care of a number of abused animals.
However, Charlotte is “one of the worst cases of neglect/cruelty that we have seen come through our doors in a long time,” according to Angels of Assisi.
The shelter announced on Wednesday, Nov. 10 that their medical team was conducting an in-depth examination of Charlotte. Then, on Thursday, Nov. 11, Reynolds told WFXR News that Charlotte’s lab work came back and the shelter has started her on antibiotics, medications, and a feeding regime.
“This girl has a long road to recovery ahead of her, but we will give her all the TLC we can,” Angels of Assisi stated on Facebook.
Even though she will probably require extensive medical care in the future, Reynolds says Charlotte is already showing signs of improvement since her arrival.
“She’s doing her best…living her best life, loving everybody,” Reynolds said. “Just in the day that she’s been here, she’s really opened up a ton and she’s much less scared of everybody, and overall, she’s just such a sweet girl and we are holding out, you know, she’s still not in the best shape, and with her anemia, it’s not great, but she’s doing really well and she’s definitely a fighter.”
Ever since Angels of Assisi posted about Charlotte on Wednesday, though, Reynolds says plenty of people have already reached out to the shelter to express interest in the dog.
“It’s just finding the best place for her, which will depend on a lot of factors, but really any home that’s gonna provide her with love and care is all this girl wants,” explained Reynolds.
Meanwhile, Reynolds says the four emaciated puppies that arrived with Charlotte on Tuesday after living in the same situation were also covered in fleas and full of intestinal parasites. In addition, the puppies turned out to have parvovirus, but the shelter staff noticed it quickly, isolated the puppies, and started providing medical treatment.
Reynolds says she hopes these sweet puppies pull through, but they are reportedly very sick and will need all the care and financial support they can get.
According to Reynolds, Charlotte and the puppies are recipients of the Biscuit Fund for neglected and abused animals.
Any donations made to that fund go directly toward providing Angels of Assisi with the resources to rescue animal cruelty victims, give them all necessary medical treatments, rehabilitate them, document their care, testify about their treatment in court, and guarantee they are adopted into loving homes.
“With all of these Biscuit Fund recipients we get in, they’re always, they’re all from different circumstances, they need a different amount of rehabilitation, and a lot of times they don’ts trust humans,” said Reynolds. “They’re just some of the most resilient dogs that we ever see, so we’re really so thankful for everybody who helps us with our Biscuit Fund and makes us rescuing these animals a reality.”
If you want to help Charlotte, the puppies, and other dogs who have suffered from abuse, neglect, or cruelty, you can donate to the Biscuit Fund by following this link.
WFXR News has also reached out to Craig County Animal Control to ask about the dogs’ living conditions before they were brought to Angels of Assisi and whether any charges will be filed in connection with their situation. Animal control has yet to reply to WFXR News.