WAUSAU, Wis. - Police are searching for the culprit who repeatedly shot a 6-month-old puppy in the head with a pellet gun Tuesday and left it for dead.
The dog, a Jack Russell terrier/border collie mix named Jack, was rushed to a veterinarian's office for treatment. Jack could not be saved and was euthanized, police said.
Police were called at about 2:20 p.m. to a veterinarian's office in the 1500 block of North Sixth Street in Wausau after the puppy's owner reported the dog had been shot multiple times, Wausau Police Lt. Michael Juedes said.
"At this point, we don't have anyone who will admit to seeing the dog get shot and we don't know why the dog was shot," Juedes said. "It's really an unfortunate incident."
Karla Sathre, a veterinarian for Wausau Animal Hospital who serves on the board of directors at New Life Pet Adoption Center in Marathon, said she can't fathom what would motivate someone to brutalize an animal.
"Someone has to be not right in the head to do something like that," Sathre said. "Thankfully, we don't see cases like this very often."
The shooting happened at a residence in the 600 block of Humboldt Street, Juedes said. The puppy's owner was inside when she heard the dog start whining outdoors, he said.
An X-ray also revealed a piece of metal embedded in the puppy's skull, Juedes said.
Animal cruelty cases are rare in Wausau, Wausau Police Capt. Benjamin Bliven said Wednesday, but when animal cruelty is reported, offenders are vigorously prosecuted.
"This is a disturbing incident and at this point we do not have a suspect," Bliven said. "These are cases we take very seriously."
Several animal cruelty cases are currently winding through the court system, including a case that drew national attention after Mary, a German shepherd, was allegedly beaten and poisoned to death by 21-year-old Sean Janas of Wausau. Janas was dating Mary's owner at the time the dog was killed, according to court documents.
Mary's death prompted thousands of people to call, write letters and send emails to prosecutors, asking for harsh penalties for Janas, whose jury trial on felony animal mistreatment charges is set for January.
Anyone with information about Tuesday's shooting is asked to call the Wausau Police Department at 715-261-7800.
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