The owner of a dog with “I need a home” written on it in marker has come forward. The dog’s story went viral last week when photos of the poor pup were posted online. The owner says that the dog had gotten out of her yard, and she does not know how it ended up in the area where it was found. The scared dog has now been reunited with its owner, but the woman who found the dog is frustrated that there may be more to the story that is being swept under the rug.
NBC Bay Area shares that the dog had been found in Benicia, California, last week by a woman named Shannon Bettencourt. The poor pup was shaking and scared when the pet was found on July 3. Even worse, the poor animal had messages of “free” and “I need a home” written on its fur in permanent marker. Bettencourt took the animal home, and she posted about the discovery of the animal on Facebook.
Bettencourt named the dog Libby, short for Liberty, given that she was found at the start of the holiday weekend. She was planning to adopt the dog, and the owner could have faced charges. Now, however, the owner of the dog with “I need a home” written on it has apparently convinced officials that she had nothing to do with the dog going missing and being written on with marker.
Yahoo! News shares that the unnamed owner has provided veterinarian records, witness testimony, and photos to demonstrate that she is the dog’s owner. She says she has no idea how the pup got to Benicia, which is about 60 miles south of her home. However, updates via Facebook from Bettencourt indicate there may be more to this story.
According to Bettencourt, the owner’s story has changed a few times, and the dog’s owner indicated at one point that her boyfriend from Benicia took the dog and abandoned her. Apparently when the owner arrived with animal control to get the dog, Libby “put up a little of a fight while they wrapped her leash around her face and put her in a kennel in the back.” Bettencourt never even had the chance to meet the dog’s owner, something she finds disturbing and heartbreaking.
Bettencourt cared for Libby for about a week and apparently was just hours away from being able to officially adopt the dog. She hasn’t given up on having the situation further investigated, noting concern that the owner’s version of what happened seemingly has changed multiple times. At this point, however, the owner of the dog with “I need a home” written on it has the animal back. Bettencourt hasn’t given up hope yet, and if the situation does change it wouldn’t be the first time a viral animal welfare story changed course due to social media pressure.
[Image via NBC Bay Area/Shannon Bettencourt Facebook]