A 27-year-old Florida man who has confessed to biting his dog for purposes of establishing dominance over it has entered a guilty plea to a felony animal cruelty charge. He also admitted to punching the dog in the face. In return for the plea, he was able to avoid a prison sentence. A Palm Beach County judge sentenced the man to four years of probation. He has been prohibited from possessing animals of any kind or living with anybody who has animals on their property. The man must also undergo a mental health evaluation and follow any recommendations. In order to monitor the defendant’s probation, his home has been ordered subject to random inspections by Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control agents or the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Department. In addition, 300 hours of public service must be served at a minimum of 10 hours per month. The sentence is subject to a two year reduction if the terms of probation are successfully served.
According to the Daily Mail, a deputy was dispatched in May of 2018 to the man’s apartment after a caller reported hearing slamming noises and somebody abusing a dog. Upon speaking with the man’s roommates, one of them said that the dog’s owner “beat the hell out of him.” The dog was found shaking in the man’s bedroom closet that had been blocked off by a couch. There was blood on the dog’s ear and on the closet floor. One of the roommates told police that he saw the defendant beating the dog more than once. He reportedly left the dog “on his back with his paws up, and crying.” Another roommate stated that he heard the dog crying in pain while the man beat it. The dog’s owner reported that he was disciplining the dog after it “destroyed several items in the apartment.”
The dog, a two-year-old Siberian Husky named Dimitri was seized by animal control officials. Its condition and whereabouts are presently unknown.