Man arrested on animal cruelty charges

SANTA FE SPRINGS - Animal control officers from Downey rescued a "seriously emaciated" dog last Saturday from a home in Santa Fe Springs.Officers from SEAACA (Southeast Area Animal Control Authority) were investigating a case of animal neglect on the 9800 block of Houghton Avenue when they found the 7-year-old female boxer. The dog appeared to have a football-sized tumor on her underbelly, officials said. "The officer said she looked like skin and bones and smelled like rotting flesh," said Captain Aaron Reyes, director of operations for SEAACA. "Her temperature was 108 - five degrees higher than a normal/healthy dog's temperature." No one was at the home, so the dog was impounded and taken to an emergency veterinary clinic. "It appears she was also dealing with a serious infection in her leg, and there were maggots present on her (rear) end," Reyes said. "She was a very sick little girl, but tried to hold her head high for the officer who rescued her." Anthony Pena, 32, was arrested on felony animal cruelty charges after an interview at SEAACA's headquarters in Downey. He was transported and booked into custody at the Norwalk Sheriff's station. He was arraigned Wednesday. "This case rates high on the egregious scale for animal cruelty and neglect I've seen over the years," Reyes said. "I can't even imagine the agony [the dog] felt day in and day out these past few months."

********** Published: December 4, 2009 - Volume 8 - Issue 32