A 9-month-old pit bull was set on fire in Albany on February 9.
The responsible party, Scott Cusson, 19, and the owner of the dog, Edward Turner Jr., 19, were both arrested on Thursday.
On the day of the horrifying incident, Cusson threw flammable liquid onto the pit bull puppy, Roxy. He then used a match to light her on fire.
The pit bull was locked in a small cage at the time and was unable to escape.
Saratoga County Animal Shelter supervisor Deborah Oligny, who is familiar with the pit bull’s case, said, “[The pit bull] has third degree burns on her ear, underneath her ear and second degree burns on her face. It’s said that it was caused by some kind of flammable liquid thrown on her and then a match was lit and gave her those burns.”
“Mr. Turner and Mr. Cusson were at the residence when the injuries occurred,” New York State Police Investigator, Rodger Kirsopp, said. “[B]ut we believe Mr. Turner was asleep at the time.”
Officials do not believe that the owner, Turner, had anything to do with the severe animal abuse afflicted upon the pit bull. He is being charged with misdemeanor failure to provide sustenance for failing to take the pit bull in for treatment until two days later.
Kirsopp told TWC News that the owner claimed he simply didn’t have time to bring the pit bull in for treatment.
“If this was a child why would you wait this long to receive medical attention?” Kirsopp added.
When the pit bull was finally brought to a Clifton Park Veterinary Clinic, the clinic immediately reported the abuse.
“If I lifted up her ear you would see the severity of the burns it’s very painful to the touch and I don’t want to do that,” Oligny said.
The pit bull is still healing, and it is unknown if she will recover fully. At some point next week, veterinarians will know for sure if they have to amputate Roxy’s ear.
Still, the pit bull puppy has not lost her love of people.
“She is lovely and full of spunk, very friendly her tail wags all the time,” Oligny said. “She is very resilient you can see she still loves people so that’s a good thing.”
Cusson was remanded to Saratoga County Jail and will be up on charges of animal abuse. A judge will decide if Turner should get the pit bull back, or if she should be put up for adoption.
[ Image courtesy of Syracuse.com ]