Dog shot in face recovers at animal services
Editor’s note: This story contains a graphic image of an injured dog
A dog is recovering after Manatee County Animal Services officials said the pitbull was shot in the face and left with a broken jaw.
Animal Services got a call for a stray, injured dog in Palmetto around 2:30 p.m. May 16, according to Manatee County Animal Services spokesman Hans Wohlgefahrt.
The dog has temporarily been named Gabriel in honor of the Animal Services officer who found and brought him to the MCAS shelter, bleeding and badly hurt.
He had been shot in the face, the post said. A bullet passed through Gabriel’s right cheek and his tongue before exiting the other side of his face. His jaw was broken.
Once MCAS staff saw the extent of the injury, Gabriel was taken to the emergency clinic, where he spent the night. He had an extremely swollen lower lip with a large bruise where the entry wound was found, according to his patient chart from Bradenton Veterinary Emergency.
A bullet was found in Gabriel’s lower lip, veterinary notes showed.
The next day, he was back in the care of MCAS and his progress is being monitored.
Wohlgefahrt said Gabriel was doing well Tuesday and MCAS has reached out to law enforcement about the incident.
“We are happy about his progress already, but still concerned about the risk of infection and hope that the pieces in his jaw stay in place,” MCAS staff said in a Facebook post.
Staff are trying to keep Gabriel calm and stable so his jaw stays in place, according to a statement from MCAS.
“We are working with all local law enforcement agencies with hopes of bringing the person that committed this crime to justice. This a senseless act on an innocent animal. If you see something, say something. We are here to help,” Manatee County Division Chief Sarah Brown said in a news release.
Most dogs brought to Animal Services with severe injuries are from being hit by a vehicle. However, Wohlgefahrt said, Gabriel is the second dog in a week to arrive with a gunshot wound.
Staff is hoping this isn’t a new trend, Wohlgefahrt said.
The other dog who was shot, he said, is alive and being treated.
Anyone with information on the dog’s shooting should call MCAS at 941-742-5933.