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Investigation Into "Zeke" The Dog's Shooting Concludes [GALLERY]

By: Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office; Lanetra Bennett Email
By: Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office; Lanetra Bennett Email
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Press Release: Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office

“Zeke” the dog was spending this work day next to one of his favorite people in the world. Wakulla County Animal Control Officer (ACO) Bonnie Brinson nursed Zeke back to health with some help from Crawfordville veterinarians. Now he is enjoying life at home or visiting the Wakulla County Animal Shelter.

The Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office investigation into locating the suspect who shot the young dog in late May has concluded and closed with all leads exhausted. But caring members of the community continue to make sure that Zeke’s life rebounds from a rough start.

On May 30, Zeke was found injured on the side of Gay’s Drive in Crawfordville. A passing motorist noticed the bloodied puppy struggling for his life on the road. Animal Control Officers responded to the call and discovered the black and tan Shepherd mix with open wounds, covered in fleas, ticks and mange, emaciated with gunshot wounds and a rear right leg compound fracture and a fractured left shaft tibia.

Approximately one month later, Zeke had reconstructive surgery at Shepherd Spring Animal Hospital in Crawfordville and more medical evaluation and physical therapy at the University of Florida Small Animal Hospital in Gainesville.

During the weeks the followed, the Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office opened a case investigation to attempt to locate the person who shot Zeke and left him to die. Detective Randy Phillips conducted scores of interviews and collected a folder full of documents as the investigation progressed. But in the end Detective Phillips exhausted all his leads.

Concerned citizens viewing the media coverage of the injured animal contributed $600 toward a reward for information leading to the arrest of the shooter. With leads exhausted the donors requested that the money they donated be given to Dr. Norm Griggs and Shepherd Springs Animal Hospital for their outstanding work in helping Zeke regain his mobility.

Dr. Griggs said he will use the monetary donation to assist other injured animals that ACO Brinson brings his way in the coming months. “She is inspiring to all of us,” said Dr. Griggs as he and fellow practice Veterinarian Dr. Julia Whited accepted the check.
Zeke continues to make progress toward a “normal” dog life. He happily bounds around on his rebuilt legs. He has amazing control of the back leg that suffered the most damage. He is active, runs, plays and swims in a pool during time spent with the Brinson family at home.

“We’re still hoping to adopt him,” said Bonnie Brinson. “He’s such a good dog.” The male dog is less than one year old and shows no ill will toward humans despite the attempt to kill him.

Veterinarians will continue to monitor Zeke’s legs and if he outgrows his damaged hind leg, the leg could be amputated. However, Brinson reports that the coverage of Zeke’s health has received a great deal of media attention and a Chicago company has offered to fit Zeke with a prosthetic leg if necessary.

Handling all of the life threatening animal calls can be “aggravating and depressing,” according to Brinson. “But at the same time it can be rewarding in the long run.”

Zeke was 16 pounds when he was rescued and now weighs 40 pounds. He was without food, water and medical attention when he was discovered. But thanks to the efforts of caring individuals in Wakulla and Leon counties he will survive and prosper.

“When I saw him struggling and walking only on his two front feet I knew he had the willpower to live,” said Brinson. “He is a wonderful dog and he will make someone a fantastic companion.”

“I cannot believe that someone was cruel enough to shoot a puppy like this,” said Sheriff Charlie Creel, a dog lover with two of his own at home. “It is tragic and disgusting. Hopefully someone will have the courage and conviction to talk and we can find out who did this.”
The closed case will be reopened if additional information is obtained.


By: Bailey Myers
July 15th, 2013

Wakulla County, FL - A dog named Zeke was found shot on the side of the road in Wakulla County. Concerned citizens have contributed 600 dollars as a reward for anyone who comes forward with information about the dog's shooting.

Zeke was found by a passing driver on the side of Shadeville Highway Wakulla County back in June. The German Shepherd mix puppy was shot in both of his hind legs. The Sheriff's Office is now pleading with the public for any information on whomever could have done this.

Wakulla County Sheriff's Office Spokesman, Keith Blackmar said, "Certainly like to arrest the individual who shot the animal its kind of a cruel thing to do. He was left out there, and it wasn't just a shooting incident, he was in pretty bad shape physically as well as the wounds."

Zeke has already undergone one surgery and another is set to happen soon. Veterinarians say one of his legs is improving, but the other one may have to be amputated. please contact the Wakulla County Sheriff's Office if you have any information.


Press Release: Wakulla County Sheriff's Office

The Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office has increased the cash reward offered for information that leads to the arrest of the subject who shot Zeke the German shepherd mix who was found badly injured along Shadeville Highway in June, according to Sheriff Charlie Creel.

A passing motorist called Wakulla County Animal Control on June 3 and reported the injured animal. Zeke was shot in both back legs and left to die.

Two concerned citizens have contributed a total of $600 that will be given to anyone who comes forward and provides the information that leads to the arrest of the dog shooter.

Zeke continues his recovery under the watchful eye of Wakulla County Animal Control Officer Bonnie Brinson. His condition has improved although he may never have full use of both of his back legs.

Zeke is estimated to be approximately seven months old. He is scheduled for orthopedic surgery with Dr. Norm Griggs at Shepherd Spring Animal Hospital in Crawfordville.

Anyone with information about the dog shooting is asked to contact the Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office at 745-7100 and request a detective from the Criminal Investigations Division.


Press Release: Wakulla County Sheriff's Office

The Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office is offering a cash reward for information that leads to the arrest of the subject who shot Zeke the German shepherd mix who was found badly injured along Shadeville Highway in June, according to Sheriff Charlie Creel.

A passing motorist called Wakulla County Animal Control on June 3 and reported the injured animal. Zeke was shot in both back legs and left to die.

A concerned citizen has contributed $500 that will be given to anyone who comes forward and provides the information that leads to the arrest of the dog shooter.

Wakulla Animal Control Officer Bonnie Brinson has been caring for the animal during his recovery period which has included emergency surgery. Since that time, Zeke has attended a Florida Cabinet meeting, met Attorney General Pam Bondi and has continued to gain weight. One of his back legs has begun to recover while the other was too damaged to repair. Amputation remains a possibility.

Zeke is an estimated six of seven months old and Wakulla Animal Control hopes to eventually adopt him out. He is scheduled for some orthopedic surgery with Dr. Norm Griggs at Shepherd Spring Animal Hospital in Crawfordville.

Anyone with information about the dog shooting is asked to contact the Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office at 745-7100 and request a detective from the Criminal Investigations Division to investigate.

“He is getting better, but he was in bad shape,” said Wakulla Animal Control Director Ivanhoe Carroll. “He loves his toys.”

“I can’t believe someone would leave this animal along the side of the road to die,” said ACO Brinson. “He loves to play with the other dogs. Surely there is someone out there who has the information the sheriff’s office needs to bring justice and the compassion to know that you have brought closure to this animal cruelty case.”


By: Mike Springer
June 16, 2013

Crawfordville, FL-A dog shot in his hind legs and left for dead in one Florida town is expected to make a full recovery.

Wakulla County Animal Control found the shepherd mix they've named Zeke on a dirt road back in May, shot in his hind legs.

Since then, Zeke has had surgery on his injured right hind leg. Pins were also added to the leg. His left hind leg will undergo a similar surgery.

Officials say he's put on about five pounds since being at the hospital.

People from as far away as Michigan have been calling, asking to adopt Zeke.

"We get at least probably five or 10 calls a day checking on him. We get donations daily for him so it's wonderful," said Blair Tucker who works at the Crawfordville Animal Hospital where Zeke is being cared for.
No arrests have been made in the case. Anyone with any information is asked to call the Wakulla Sheriff's Office.

If you are interested in adopting Zeke or another just like him, use the link below:

http://facebook.com/cauzicancare


By: Lanetra Bennett
June 3, 2013

Crawfordville, FL - Someone shot a puppy and left it to die on the side of the road in Crawfordville.

Both of the puppy's hind legs were shot. Deputies want to know who pulled the trigger.

Wakulla County Animal Control Officer Mark Carter says the puppy was trying to get away by walking away on his front legs when he found him on the side of the road last Thursday in Crawfordville.

Carter says it was obvious the four-month old shephard mix was injured. But, when he took the dog to the Crawfordville Animal Hospital, they discovered it had been shot in both of his back legs.

Carter says, "I felt, you automatically feel bad for the animal. Then it's a little bit of anger; what caused him to get in this situation and how could somebody put him in the situation."

Folks at the hospital named the pup, "Zeke."

They say he's come a long way over the past few days.

Blair Tucker, a veterinarian technician at the Crawfordville Animal Hospital, says, "He was covered in fleas and ticks and real emaciated. We've had to do a lot of wound care from the wounds from the bullet. We've done a lot of prevention with infection. We've done x-rays and blood work. One of the bones in the back left leg is completely shattered."

Animal Control officers say they believe Zeke was in his condition on the side of the road for several days because of the fact that he was already used to walking on his hind legs.

The hospital says Zeke has gained three pounds, the fleas and ticks are all gone, and his hair is growing back.

Tucker says, "That's the best part of it. I hate to see any dog come in wounded like that. But, to see him get better and to progress is really pleasing. That's why I love my job. He's a sweet boy. He's already spoiled."

Authorities are trying to find out who shot him. But, for now: "He's in good hands now." Says, Tucker.

Authorities say they have found the owner of the dog, but, no charges have been filed against anyone at this time.

We're told the owner says the dog's name is originally Bruno.

Carter says it was a citizen who called animal control about the injured dog. He says he and another officer went out to check, and that's when they found the puppy on the side of the road in the grass.

Carter says no one around claimed to know anything about what happened.

Administrators at the hospital say the pup will need surgery. They say they hope to be able to save the leg that is shattered.

If you'd like to help, call the Crawfordville Animal Hospital at 850-926-2089.


Cauzican Care Animal Rescue is helping to care for Zeke. If you'd like to make a donation, call the Crawfordville Animal Hospital at 850-926-2089.


By: Lanetra Bennett
June 3, 2013

Crawfordville, FL - "Zeke", a puppy German Shepherd, was found by Wakulla County Animal Control last Thursday with gunshots in both of his hind legs.

Officers believe Zeke was shot and abandoned days before Thursday though, as he was found already used to walking on his front legs.

Since then, he has gained three pounds, and has been completely rid of fleas and ticks. He is also getting plenty of love, attention and care from the staff at the Animal Hospital

He will need surgery on his back legs where he was shot but techs at the animal hospital say his wounds have to heal a little more first, therefore, a surgery date has not been set.

Authorities say they don't know who did this or why it happened.

As of right now, there have been no charges filed and no arrests made, but the suspect may be looking at multiple charges.


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