The Daily Breeze reports that Kellie Sue Peters, of Playa del Rey, Calif., was driving to the market when a small, white terrier mix chasing a rabbit suddenly ran in front of her car. She pulled over and tried to catch the dog – and then saw several other dogs. As she stood there, one was hit by a car.
“I was horrified,” she told the Daily Breeze. “I just thought I’ve got to help him … I’m not the type of person who can just walk away.”
More drivers pulled over, and along with some local residents, they tried to corral the dogs, who appeared to be Chihuahua and terrier mixes. Peters described it as “complete mayhem.”
El Segundo resident Charlotte Hefti told the Daily Breeze, “When I got there, there were some women crouched on the ground. There was a dog dying. Everybody is just crying.”
Hefti and Peters managed to grab the terrier mix, who was bleeding, and took him to an emergency animal hospital. Among the dog’s injuries were internal bleeding, a bruised kidney and a broken rib. Peters, who named the dog “Carson,” took him home and cared for him for two days, then took him to another animal hospital, where he was fostered by a rescue group.
spcaLA in Hawthorne, Calif., also took in seven of the dogs, which may have been strays or victims of a hoarding situation, according to El Segundo police Lt. Carlos Mendoza. “They were unkempt,” he told the Daily Breeze.
Within a week, Kim Sill of the rescue group D Cups Saving Teacups offered a $3,500 reward for information leading to the arrest of whoever dumped the dogs. Actress Katherine Heigl also offered a $1,500 reward. On his Cesar’s Way website, the “Dog Whisperer,” Cesar Millan, accepted donations for Carson’s care.
In the meantime, three of the eight dogs that were saved have been adopted into new homes. KTLA reports that Carson is recovering and has been adopted by an Orange County family. spcaLA announced on Wednesday that three terriers – Bugsy (11-03263), Star (11-03276) and Lulu (11-03262) – are now ready for adoption at its South Bay Pet Adoption Center.
Two more terriers at the South Bay Pet Adoption Center are still receiving medical treatment, and will be ready for new homes in about two weeks. To adopt or make a donation to help pay for their care, visit spcaLA.com.
In a statement, spcaLA notes that “finders of stray animals are mandated to bring them to or duly notify the animal control entity in their jurisdiction so that the legitimate owner can be located.”
If you have information about the dumping of the dogs, call El Segundo Animal Control at 310-524-2231.
PHOTO: Eli Duke