October 2, 2012 | Back to: Columns

Man in dog amputation case pleads not guilty to felony

A man who allegedly amputated his dog’s leg in a home surgery pleaded not guilty to felony animal cruelty Monday.

The dog, named Bart, had been brought into Mother Lode Veterinary Hospital after a dog twice his size had attacked and nearly killed him, according to the nonprofit group Sammie’s Friends website. Sammie’s Friends has a contract to run Nevada County’s animal shelter.

At the veterinary hospital, they discovered the dog’s neck muscles were completely torn apart, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise, the website said. If it weren’t for this, Bart would have been able to move his head and might have suffocated.

Bart had previously been attacked and left with a leg that was so severely injured, it needed to be amputated, according to the website. Bart’s owners allegedly didn’t have the funds at the time, and decided to amputate the leg themselves. The wound became infected, but the vets at Mother Lode were able to treat all of Bart’s issues. The dog currently is in foster care, according to the website.

Bart’s owner, Timothy Looper, was arraigned in Nevada County Superior Court Monday morning and pleaded not guilty to one count of animal cruelty due to the unlawful amputation of the dog’s leg. He is scheduled to be back in court Oct. 25.

There are a number of animal rescue organizations in Nevada County that help animal owners whose pets are in need of veterinary care.

“Any one of us would have paid that bill,” said Susan Wallace, founder of Scooter’s Pals. “It’s just so sad.”

Resources for pet financial aid can be found at www.sammiesfriends.org/ifpetneedshelp.htm.

To contact Staff Writer Liz Kellar, email lkellar@theunion.com or call (530) 477-4229.


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The Union Updated Oct 2, 2012 07:35AM Published Oct 8, 2012 04:26PM Copyright 2012 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.