AR-News: (AR - US) HSUS offers reward in Arkansas animal cruelty case

Snugglezzz at Snugglezzz at
Mon Sep 29 18:30:38 EDT 2003


DALLAS  (September 29, 2003) – The Humane Society of the United States

(HSUS), the nation’s largest animal protection organization, is offering a

$2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the

person or persons responsible for the beating and attempted drowning of a

cat in Bella Vista, Arkansas earlier this month.

On September 18, Animal Control Officer Terra Carter was called to the

east end of Lake Windsor Dam after a lake ranger found a cat who had been

left to die in a trash can.  According to Officer Carter, the eight-month
old cream and white male cat had been badly beaten. There was blood on his
nose and coming from his mouth, his eyes were bloody, and his entire body
was wet, but the cat was still breathing when the lake ranger retrieved
him from the trashcan.

Officer Carter and Donna Miles, manager of Bella Vista Animal Shelter,
immediately took the cat to Dr. Darlene Wehr at Sugar Creek Animal
Hospital.  Due to the extent of the cat’s injuries and suffering, he was

euthanized. Dr. Wehr performed an autopsy revealing that the cat’s lungs

were full of water, and severe trauma to the head had caused ruptured

blood vessels in his eyes.  The cat’s trachea was full of foam because he

had been breathing with wet lungs, and his bladder had suffered trauma,

possibly from being kicked, according to the autopsy. Dr. Wehr concluded

that this cat was the victim of trauma and attempted drowning.

“This type of behavior will not be tolerated in Bella Vista,” said Officer

Carter, who is currently going door-to-door in an effort to gather clues

in this case. “The condition in which this cat was found is truly

horrifying,” said Melissa DeLoach, program coordinator for The HSUS

Southwest Regional Office. “The amount of suffering that this cat endured

at the hands of maliciously cruel individuals is hard to comprehend.”

The connection between animal cruelty and violence to people is well

documented. The First Strike® program, part of The HSUS' Animals In Crisis

program educates communities about the connection between animal cruelty

and human violence. The HSUS provides resources about the connection and

what people can do to combat animal cruelty, such as starting a

Neighborhood Watch for Animals. The HSUS also offers rewards in cruelty

cases across the country and works to strengthen laws against animal

cruelty. Go on-line to for more information.

The Bella Vista Sheriff’s Department is actively investigating this case. 

Anyone with information concerning this case may call Officer Terra Carter

at 479-855-3771.

“This case should also serve as a reminder of the importance of keeping

your cats indoors,” DeLoach said.  The HSUS has information on how people
can help keep their cats safe. Go to for details.

The HSUS has more than seven million members and constituents. The HSUS is
a mainstream voice for animals, with active programs in companion animals,
wildlife and habitat protection, animals in research and farm animals and
sustainable agriculture. For nearly 50 years, The HSUS has protected all
animals through legislation, litigation, investigation, education,
advocacy and fieldwork.

The HSUS is headquartered in Washington, DC and has 10 regional offices.
The Southwest Regional Office serves Arizona, Arkansas, Louisiana, New
Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas.  Go to

For More Information Contact: Melissa DeLoach ( 972) 488-2964 or 
Karen Allanach (301) 548-7778

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