SOUTHWEST FLORIDA — Mutty Paws Rescue took in a neglected dog named Khalessi at the beginning of August. They offered a $500 reward to find who neglected her.
The organization received a tip from a previous owner who sold her on Craigslist. After learning more, Mutty Paws, Rescue, decided to use the $500 reward for Khaleesi’s care.
“She wouldn't have been in this position if she wasn't re-home on Craigslist. If she wasn't sold and given away on Craigslist. Maybe her outcome would have been different, so as our rescue Organization has put thousands into caring for Khaleesi. We feel that it's appropriate that we are going to instead take that reward money that we offer that $500 of our money and that's going back to Khaleesi’s care she's going to have ongoing care for months going forward,” Michelle Holsinger, Co-Founder of Mutty Paws Rescue, said.
Khaleesi landed in the home of Ashley Howard and Charles Koon. The pair has been charged with animal cruelty, according to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.
Mutty Paws Rescue says the house has crates lying outside.
“Maybe she was in a bad spot and that's why she needed to get rid of her quick and she just gave her away. We don't know we weren't there. We weren't part of that decision-making. But We want to tell people if you can't keep your dog and you're forced with the decision to re-home it, just do the right thing,” Holsinger said.
She said the right way includes getting three references of the potential buyer. If they have a pet, Holsinger says to call their vet office. Also, visit their home and search their name, looking for any arrests or warrants related to animal abuse.
Holsinger said it could save the life of an animal.
If you need to re-home your pet, you can also look to a bunch of rescue groups.
“There's the humane societies. There's so many avenues of where you could surrender your dog to if you needed to rather than just giving it away to a complete stranger that you know nothing about,” Holsinger said.
For Khaleesi, she is slowly recovering.
“She's fighting. She's doing a lot better. Can't say she's out of the woods yet; she's still only 23 pounds,” she said.