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Dog with muzzle taped shut doing well after surgery

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(CNN) — Caitlyn, the 15-month-old dog who was found last week with her muzzle taped shut, is well on her way to recovery.

CNN affiliate WCIV reported that the dog spent two hours in surgery Wednesday at Veterinary Specialty Care in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.

Dr. Henri Bianucci told the station that Caitlyn did much better than expected.

“Her tongue was in way better condition that we anticipated. It was initially assessed that we would lose about a third of her tongue, and we sort of revised that estimate to a fourth, but I don’t think she lost an eighth of it,” he said after the surgery.

Caitlyn should be able to eat and drink normally, he added.

“Functionally, I think she’ll be able to lap up food and water and do really well,” Dr. Bianucci said. The dog will be in recovery for about a week, he said, and then be ready for foster care.

Dog muzzle arrest

Man arrested

Caitlyn, a chocolate Staffordshire bull terrier mix, was a well-known stray in the Chicora-Cherokee neighborhood of North Charleston. She was left on someone’s doorstep on Wednesday with black electrical tape wrapped around her muzzle so tightly that her tongue was caught between her teeth.

The tape was apparently there for three days, according to the Charleston Animal Society, which took charge of the dog’s care last week.

North Charleston police arrested William Leonard Dodson, 41, on suspicion of the crime, said Ryan Johnson, spokesman for the City of Charleston. Dodson faces a charge of ill treatment of an animal involving torture. The crime is punishable by up to five years in jail and a $5,000 fine, according Charleston Animal Society Director of Anti-Cruelty Aldwin Roman.

‘We have the greatest of hopes’

Prayers and best wishes flooded the animal society’s Facebook page after it shared her story. New Jersey artist Janet O’Neil painted a portrait of the pup that was shared on social media over the weekend with the hashtag #Caitlyn.

The dog was transferred to Veterinary Specialty Care on Friday. She started receiving hyperbaric treatments every 12 hours to improve the damaged tissue in her mouth and cold laser therapy to promote healing, Senior Director of Veterinary Care Lucy Fuller said. She underwent a small surgical procedure on her lip Saturday.

Caitlyn started eating on her own after graduating from intravenous fluids and antibiotics to normal food and oral medications.

“We have the greatest of hopes for this beautiful girl,” Fuller said.

The animal society hopes the case will draw attention to animal cruelty and the importance of caring for stray animals. It is also asking the public for donations to a medical fund.

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  • Prospectne

    The suspect should spend the rest of his life handcuffed in a small cage.
    Somewhere public where we can throw rotten fruit at him and publicly shame him.
    Wearing sign around his neck “tortures small helpless animals”!

  • Sue

    He needs a good psychological eval – you know that serial killers do this kind of stuff….then he needs some tape around one of his “most important parts”.

  • Tammy

    GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT FOX! I’ve been following this story since the beginning! Caitlyn was not a stray! Her previous owners sold her for $10 because the supposedly needed money and she chewed stuff in their home and they were afraid of eviction. The new owner, suspect who was arrested, taped her mouth shut. Their have been conflicting stories that she show up at the old owners home or possibly a neighbors home. SHE WAS NOT A STRAY. I pray that she has a full recovery and gets the forever home she deserves!

  • Marian Kreul

    I think that in honor of Bruce now known as CAITLYN, he should adopt this dog and give her a chance as we’ve had to with Caitlyn/Bruce. Do something good Ms. Jenner with all of your money

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