FORT WINNEBAGO, Wis. — A 10-year-old black Labrador, finally gets her justice after she was found abandoned and injured inside a duffle bag in the parking lot of the French Creek Wildlife Area.
She was left to die alone in freezing temperatures.
Misty’s story is even more heartbreaking as authorities say that she suffers from a large mammary tumor and also appeared to have blunt force trauma to her head. It is unclear if the injuries were sustained before or after she was inside the bag. She is currently under the care of the Portage Veterinary Clinic and the Columbia County Humane Society.
“Someone either hit her or she was bitten by another dog,” said Veterinarian Dr. Mike Cooper of the Portage Veterinary Clinic tells WKOW.
Cooper explains that on a scale of one to nine, Misty’s health is a one. She required 19 staples to close the wounds on her head and it is currently unknown if her tumor is malignant.
Despite her horrifying story, Misty is still curious and friendly.
The Columbia County Humane Society executive director Susan Bratcher says she hopes Misty’s story will let people know that the society is there to help.
“It is ironic,” Bratcher says. “We’ve always been here, we’ve been here for a long time and people don’t realize that. We’re here to help the animals.”
With luck, Misty’s owner, 56-year-old Terri Lynn Benson, turned herself into police.
Sheriff Dennis Richards says that Benson is currently being held on charges of animal abandonment and animal mistreatment. She was expected to make her first appearance in court on January 25.
Benson allegedly told authorities that she thought Misty was dying and couldn’t afford to euthanize her.
Richards also shares an important message to all animal owners: “A situation like this is very disturbing. When a person or family is no longer able to or can afford caring for family pets I urge you to contact a local veterinary service or the Columbia County Humane Society. These family pets deserve to be treated humanely. If you do not have the resources to have your pets euthanized at a veterinary clinic, please do not take the matter into your own hands to prevent family pets from suffering like this black lab has.”
Anyone who would like to help with Misty’s medical costs are asked to visit the Columbia County Humane Society.