NC children playing discover starved dog tied to a tree

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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — The Pitt County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after children found a dog tied to a tree without food, water, or shelter.

Pitt County Animal Services responded to the woods between Mayes Circle and Pam Drive in the Pactolus community around 8 p.m. Sunday.

Children had been playing in the area when they heard whining before they found the dog.

Officials found a female terrier/pitbull mix severely emaciated and weak, though still able to stand and move by herself.

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The dog was taken to the Pitt County Animal Shelter, where it was given food and water and held for further evaluation.

The dog has since been named Tanzie, and she is now in the care of Pitt Friends and being seen by vets at Animal Hospital of Pitt County.

Michele Whaley, director of Pitt County Animal Services, said the dog may have been starved for two to three months before ending up in that condition, although it is unknown if the dog remained in the same location the whole time.

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“The community is very concerned,” Whaley said. “They are very dismayed over the condition of the dog. It definitely does take a village of all of us to recognize and report animal cruelty.”

Whaley said it could take up to six months to get Tanzie fully healthy and adoptable.

Tanzie is estimated to be between 1- and 2-years-old.

“This is a community problem,” Whaley said. “It takes all of the community to work together with local law enforcement and local animal control, not be afraid to speak out and report things that may not be right.”

Animal services says if the children hadn’t found the dog, it likely wouldn’t have survived.

The Friends of the Pitt County Animal Shelter is paying for the care and if you would like to donate you can contact the Animal Hospital of Pitt County at 252-756-0148.

The Pitt County Sheriff’s Office is still investigating, and CrimeStoppers (252-758-7777) is offering a $2,500 award for information leading to an arrest.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report

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