A coonhound on the edge of death recently brought to the La Plata County Humane Society shocked employees.
“She is the thinnest you can possibly get before dying,” said Jon Patla, director of animal protection.
She is the second worst case of starvation Patla has seen in his career. She was found near Cherry Creek, west of Hesperus.
She had likely been starving for at least two to four weeks to become so thin, said Heather Perkins, the humane society’s veterinarian.
A coonhound her size and age should weigh 45 to 50 pounds, but she weighed only 23 pounds.
When she was brought in, humane society employees named her Faith, in hopes that her condition was not a purposeful human act or the result of negligence and stupidity, said Chris Nelson, director of animal services
She was in such bad shape, a veterinarian checked to make sure she did not have a medical problem that had caused her weight loss, Nelson said.
However, when no underlying medical condition was found, it led Nelson to suspect that perhaps Faith’s condition was caused by humans. Even dogs brought to the humane society from the desert have been in better shape because they were able to scavenge. Her starvation led Nelson to believe she had been kept by humans with access to water, but no food and later dumped on the side of the road.
Since she arrived at the humane society Sept. 20, Faith, estimated to be 2 years old, has been gaining weight.
The humane society is looking for an owner or anyone who may have more information about Faith.
“I would like to see justice for this dog,” Nelson said.
He said an abuse case might be very difficult to prove. But he is hopeful someone might recognize her by the collie-eye anomaly, which makes one of her pupils less visible.
Anyone with information about Faith is asked to call 259-2847 or 385-2900.
The humane society will be caring for her until she is healthy enough to be adopted, and it is needs donations to help with her care until she is adopted.
To donate, visit www.lpchumanesociety.org or call 259-2847.