MEDIA RELEASE: Mississippi Man Charged for Chaining Dog Without Shelter in Freezing Cold
Montgomery County, Miss. (April 29, 2021) – In Defense of Animals, the international animal protection organization that operates Hope Animal Sanctuary and the Justice for Animals Campaign in Carroll County, was the affiant in the trial of a man who chained his dog without shelter in freezing temperatures and rain. Mr. Flowers was charged yesterday, making this the second time the organization has gotten justice for a chained dog within recent months in Montgomery County.
Justice Court Judge Larry Bamberg found Mr. Flowers guilty of animal cruelty. Flowers was given a 90-day suspended sentence and the maximum $1,000 fine. He is also prohibited from having a dog for two years.
In late January, In Defense of Animals received a report of a dog chained in freezing weather with no water or shelter. With cooperation from the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department, Doll Stanley, the Justice for Animals Campaign Director for In Defense of Animals, confirmed that the dog had no shelter. It was 34 degrees when Stanley and Montgomery County Deputy Cordarius Gholston found the dog cowering at the end of his chain, near holes that he had dug to try to gain warmth from the ground. Stanley provided a doghouse for the dog until legal action could be taken.
Following the investigation, Stanley quickly learned that the shelter she provided to the dog’s guardian had been removed from the property. On January 26, Montgomery County Deputy Jay Bennett obtained a seizure order from Justice Court Judge Larry Bamberg for Max, a white shepherd-mix dog.
Stanley immediately took Max to Veterinary Associates of Grenada for care. A veterinary examination revealed that he was approximately 15 pounds underweight, positive for heartworm, and infested with intestinal parasites, including hookworms and whipworms. Each of these parasites would have proven fatal if they were left untreated. Flowers also revealed that neighboring dogs had attacked Max on his chain, evidenced by bite marks on Max’s nose. In Defense of Animals placed Max in foster care, where he is being treated for these conditions and prepared for adoption.
“This cowering dog came to life at the vet clinic. As soon as he knew that he was in trusted hands, Max not only allowed us to handle him, he gently reached out with his right paw, pulling my hand back to pet him,” said Stanley. “Actively removing shelter from a suffering animal is a clear case for prosecution. Every Mississippian should know that chaining is risky for animals, their guardian, and everyone around them. Max’s case shows how tethering can lead to expensive fines and vet bills when animals get attacked or get sick from exposure to the elements. Tethered dogs also pose a bite risk for children and adults, which can lead to costly hospital bills and lawsuits. Chaining your dog isn’t worth the risk; it’s much better to bring your dog inside or put up a shelter and fence. I have been serving this community for decades, and I am ready to help anyone untether their animals.”
Stanley was the affiant in court, producing evidence that Flowers failed his dog. Flowers was charged with cruelty under the Mississippi Dog and Cat Pet Protection Law of 2011, which makes it a misdemeanor to “intentionally or with criminal negligence wound, deprive of adequate food, water, or shelter, or carry or confine in a cruel manner, any domesticated dog or cat,” which is punishable with a fine of up to $1000 and/or up to six months in jail.
Contacts: Doll Stanley, email@example.com, (662) 809-4483
In Defense of Animals has served animals and communities in the Deep South for 28 years. The organization carries out educational initiatives and directly rescues and rehomes abused, neglected, and homeless animals through its Hope Animal Sanctuary in Carroll County, Mississippi. Its Justice for Animals campaign aids law enforcement and courts to prevent, investigate and prosecute animal cruelty, and works with legislators to both create and improve animal protection laws.
In Defense of Animals is an international animal protection organization with over 250,000 supporters and a 38-year history of fighting for animals, people, and the environment through education and campaigns as well as hands-on rescue in India, South Korea, and rural Mississippi. www.idausa.org/mbreakthechains
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