The case of Rosa Martinez, who has just been arrested in Houston on two counts of animal cruelty, is appalling on a lot of levels, but here’s the thing that keeps sticking in my mind. It’s this line in the report published by ABC News: “Rosa Martinez says her son was the first to realize that one of her dog’s legs had rotted and fallen off.”
How oblivious to your pet must you be to not notice that? You “notice” that your dog accidentally took a dump in the living room. One moment it wasn’t there, then you become aware that it is there. A limb that decays until it falls off takes some time. How do you ignore something like that until one of the kids casually mentions, “Oh hey, mom. The dog’s leg fell off.”
Hence, the distinction of Bonehead of the Week.
The dog is Rainy, a Maltese and Poodle mix. Rainy came to the attention of authorities when Martinez brought her into an animal clinic because of the missing leg. One of her other legs was missing a paw, but that seems to be a long-term injury. Dr. Michael Huddleston, who amputated the rest of Rainy’s decayed leg, says that he was going to fit her with a prosthetic for the missing paw, but she didn’t seem to need it. “She’s getting around just fine on two legs, which is amazing,” Huddleston said. “She’s a real sweet dog, and she is very athletic and strong. And she gets her balance real well.”
The police report says that Rainy’s leg was apparently injured badly enough to expose about three inches of bone, and then it rotted because it wasn’t treated. The leg was giving off a “foul odor” when Rainy was brought in.
Again, you’d think that if Martinez didn’t notice the exposed bone, or the pain of the dog as decay ate through the muscle and skin, she would have at least noticed the stench before the leg dropped off.
Police found two more dogs at Martinez’s house, both of which were suffering from neglect. One had a staph infection, and the other was covered with sores. Both were extremely malnourished.
Martinez, who is the principal at a Houston private school, says that she wasn’t able to care for the dogs because of her busy schedule. She told a police officer that she “overcommitted herself to work and nonprofit organizations” and didn’t check on the dog’s injury even though she had noticed Rainy limping. Facing two years in prison if convicted, she says that the charges are unfair: “I know you have to have advocates to protect them,” she said. “In my case, it’s not fair. I didn’t do anything wrong.”
Red Collar Rescue is trying to raise $10,000 to pay for further operations and care on Rainy; donations can be made directly online. Red Collar Rescue also has a Facebook gallery of Rainy and her fellow rescues, Stormy and Cyclone. Caution: Some of the pictures are extremely graphic.
Via ABC News.