A year ago Caitlyn’s plight was made public after a South Carolina resident found the 15 month old chocolate pit bull mix on her porch. She called 911 as soon as she saw how badly Caitlyn had been treated.
According to ABC affiliate WCIV. the 911 caller said:
“I have a dog that’s here at my house that I found and the dog’s mouth is taped shut with electrical tape, tongue hanging out its mouth, bleeding, and his tongue is completely black,” I just don’t know what to do.”
The Charleston Animal Society, was up for the task and they saw to her immediate medical attention. Cailyn’s situation was very serious since the blood flow had been completely cut off from her tongue. Caitlyn screamed in excruciating pain when the duct-tape was removed from her muzzle.
“To leave this dog in pain, unable to eat or drink, and to now leave her in the position where her life is at stake because she may lose her tongue is heartbreaking,” said Aldwin Roman of the CAS.
Caitlyn needed surgery and lots of it.
She had surgery on her badly lacerated cheek. She had numerous laser surgeries for facial scarring. She had hyperbaric oxygen treatments, and she had surgery on a damaged salivary gland. The amount of tissue loss from her tongue trauma was greatly reduced by cold laser therapy and the oxygen treatments.
A fundraiser was set up for her care, and because of the widespread media attention, over $150,000 was donated. This is far more than she needed, and the excess has been used to help all the other animals in need at CAS.
Caitlyn overcame her horrific treatment to become a canine ambassador for abuse victims, and her story has inspired cities nationwide to harshen punishments against animal abusers. At their requests, she met singer/actor Rick Springfield and chef Alton Brown of Food Network when they were in the area. (via LifeWithDogs)
LifeWithDogs went on to say:
She’s been featured on magazine covers and even posed with Charleston firefighters for their 2016 and 2017 calendars, the proceeds of which go to CAS’ medical fund. On May 3rd, $160,000 was raised during CAS’ Lowcountry Giving Day, partly because of Caitlyn’s presence. And most recently, she was the guest of honor at Caitlyn’s Anti-Cruelty Fund’s gala, which raised another $75,000.
Much of this is possible thanks to the wonderful foster family that has been caring for Caitlyn since last June. She loves playing and snuggling with her foster siblings – canine and human, and going for five-mile runs with her mom. When the trial for her abuser is finished this summer, she will no longer be a foster dog, but a forever dog.
While Caitlyn’s story is the one we remember the most, her’s was not the only case of a dog whose muzzle was duct-taped. Very recently a woman in NC was convicted of animal abuse after she posted pictures on Facebook for her dog with it’s muzzle taped. Fortunately, the tape was not nearly as tight as the tape on Catilyn’s muzzle. Another woman was also convicted in NC last December. The case against Caitlyn’s owner is still pending. The other cases resulted in very light sentence (although they were convicted of a crime). There are many who are hoping that the trial of Caitlyn’s owner results in a much stiffer sentence.
To summarize – Caitlyn is alive and well and totally enjoying her new life!
We thank you for being interested in Caitlyn, The Dog Whose Muzzle Was Duct-Taped
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