District man charged in animal abuse case

District man charged in animal abuse case

By Erich Wagner (Courtesy photo)

Alexandria officers charged a D.C. resident with a slew of crimes in connection with an abandoned dog found near Richmond Highway in Alexandria.

Megan Webb, executive director of the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, said the man, whose name is being withheld by the commonwealth’s attorney’s office, was charged this week with criminal animal abandonment, animal neglect and taking a dog over state lines without vaccinations.

In early April, animal control officers responded to a reports of an abandoned dog near Richmond Highway. When they arrived they found Javar, a mastiff, weak and in severe pain.

Webb said that Javar’s back right leg had swollen to three times its normal size because of an infection that had destroyed some of his flesh. He was taken to VCA Old Town Animal Hospital for care, but Webb said that veterinarians were forced to amputate.

“We’re not sure what caused it, but we do know it was a very serious infection that took quite a long time to get as bad as it did,” Webb said. “We tried to save his leg, but ultimately they had to amputate.”

Webb said Javar has improved considerably since the procedure, and is ready for adoption.

“He does have only three legs, but he seems to get along just fine,” she said. “He’s much happier now without that leg. It was definitely causing him a lot of pain.”

After just one day of being available to the public, Webb said the shelter received multiple adoption applications. Javar had so many visitors that he was too tired to see people Friday.

“We’ve already had several people put in applications for him, but we are still taking applications,” she said. “We will review all of them and decide what might be the best home for him.”