TAMPA, Fla. – Three bulldogs neglected by their owner were seized on February 2nd by Hillsborough County’s Division of Animal Control.
An “Emergency Petition for Custody and Enjoinment” was filed on February 6 against the dogs’ owner, Marquis Burton of Tampa.
Burton was in between residences when he was first approached at a house located on Sligh Avenue on January 27 by an animal abuse investigator.
Three days earlier, an animal control officer saw that two French bulldogs and one English bulldog were tethered or confined inside metal raised wire crates without water or shelter in the backyard. That officer was responding to a report made to the Division of Animal Control.
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The dogs’ names are “Oreo,” “A.P.” and “Role.”
None of them had Hillsborough County dog tags or proof of rabies vaccinations. Burton was instructed to follow up with treatment for the dogs and proper care and shelter, but on February 3, another report was filed about the dogs’ distress and exposure to direct sunlight.
Another animal control officer went to the home, saw a lack of water and shelter, and contacted the Tampa Police Department.
The officer registered the day’s heat at 92.6 degrees and feared the dogs would die of heat stroke.
Upon entering the house, the officer observed fresh and old, moldy feces strewn about the house and in the backyard where the dogs were confined.
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“Oreo,” who was suffering from flies and mosquitos, registered a temperature of 101.6 degrees. “Role” was suffering from a temperature of over 104 degrees. “A.P.” would not allow the officer to monitor his temperature, so like “Oreo” and “A.P.,” he was placed in an air-conditioned van to cool off.
They were transported to the Pet Resource Center, where Dr. Brooks, a veterinarian, found “Role” to have matted feces under all of his nails and extreme ear infections in both ears.
The petition seeks for Marquis Burton to be “adjudicated unable, unfit, or unwilling to provide adequately for the above-described animals” and that Petitioner be granted custody of the three dogs.
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