A Florida man is mourning the loss of his Pomeranian, who ran off last Friday afternoon. When the 13-year-old Pom named “Fox” was returned, the manner was inexpressibly horrifying – the small, toy dog breed had been ferociously beaten and kicked to death. Its lifeless body was on the doorstep with a note: “WE BEAT IT 2 death lol! (smiley face) HAHAHA!”
Writes The Associated Press on August 11, via Yahoo News: “The beating death of a Pomeranian named Fox may have been eclipsed by the hand-written note left behind. Ronald Boisvert, Fox’s owner, said his family pet disappeared Friday afternoon when his girlfriend let him out at their Pembroke Pines condominium.”
Boisvert said that on Saturday morning, his N. French Dr. Pembroke Pines condo neighbor was “frantically knocking” at his door. When he opened the door and saw Fox’s body, Boisvert was heartbroken.
“I was devastated,” Boisvert said. “He was a very friendly dog.”
On their Facebook page, the Pembroke Pines Police Department issued a statement and a media release, writing that the “Saint Francis Animal Hospital conducted an examination” and that “based on the attending veterinarian’s exam, the canine was determined to have multiple fractures. According to the veterinarian, these injuries are consistent with blunt force trauma.”
In their Facebook post, the PPPD said they would “like to let dog owners know that as of now the horrific murder of Fox, the Pomeranian, appears to be an isolated incident. While we always encourage animal owners to be cautious with leaving their pets unattended, we have no reason to believe that other dogs are at risk at this time.”
Miami’s Local10.com news carried a photo of the deceased Pomeranian and the brutal note taped to its side. The site reported that a veterinarian “confirmed the dog likely died from being repeatedly kicked. X-rays showed Fox had a dislocated spine, ten broken ribs and a broken jaw, among other injuries.”
Veterinarian Ron Ridge, from the St. Francis Emergency Animal Hospital where Fox was examined, said the Pom’s injuries are consistent with a kicking death. “If the note was indeed true, somebody really meant to kill that dog,” Dr. Ridge said. “To be hit with a stick you’d have angular injuries. The injuries were on the flat side of the body.”
Boisvert said Fox did not have his collar on when he got loose, yet his body was returned to his home. Fox’s fur had reddish sand in it, similar to that of a baseball field, one of which is near Boisvert’s condo. He believes Fox was beaten by juveniles who have seen Fox in his yard.
“The only way you would know is if you’d seen him before,” he said. “I just really hope they catch the individuals. Nobody should have to go through this.”
Boisvert’s girlfriend, Verline Barthelemy, spoke of the text – and photo – she received from Ronald: “My boyfriend texted me that picture and, it’s like, I just saw brown, so I was like, ‘Oh good, he found him,’ But then I saw the note, and when I read it, it was just horrible, horrifying. I just started crying, like, I can’t even talk about it. It hurts.”
“What disturbs me the most is that somebody apparently thought this was humorous and took joy and pleasure in presenting the dog like this,” added Dr. Ridge.
The Pembroke Police have opened an active animal cruelty investigation and are asking that anyone with any information contact them via 954-493-TIPS or email at TIPS@PPINES.COM.
Update August 20:
Samantha Miller, Public Information Officer with the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) reached out to me via Examiner today, and advised that this injustice to Fox has yet to be resolved. As such, the Humane Society is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the fatal beating.
The HSUS, which works to raise public awareness about the connection between animal cruelty and human violence, states in the release:
“Getting the serious attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and the community in cases involving allegations of cruelty to animals is an essential step in protecting the community. The connection between animal cruelty and human violence is well documented. Studies show a correlation between animal cruelty and all manner of other crimes, from narcotics and firearms violations to battery and sexual assault.”
Kate MacFall, the Florida state director at the HSUS, said: “It takes an especially depraved person to beat an innocent dog to death and then brag about it. We are hopeful that this reward will help bring forward anyone with information about this heinous crime.”
The HSUS spearheads the reinforcement of laws against animal cruelty. To that end, the National Sheriffs’ Association and the HSUS recently launched ICE BlackBox – a free smartphone tool that allows users to record videos of illegal animal cruelty and share it securely with law enforcement for possible investigation and prosecution.
The HSUS recently doubled its standard cruelty reward from $2,500 to $5,000 thanks to a generous donation from an HSUS board member.