NORTH AURORA – A veterinarian found that the Rottweiler puppy found caged, abandoned and covered with feces in a North Aurora townhouse Nov. 1 was underweight, malnourished and suffering from anemia and pancreatitis, according to a North Aurora police report released through a Freedom of Information Act request.
The dog, believed to be named Hercules by a name on his empty water bowl, had been found covered with feces in a cage on a cement floor in the garage of a townhouse in the 1100 block of Kilbery Lane, North Aurora.
Santos Chavez, 25, of the 400 block of Lincoln Ave., Aurora, was charged with failing to provide necessary care to the dog, a Class B misdemeanor, a news release from North Aurora police stated. The charge is punishable by up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,500, if convicted.
Police issued Chavez a Notice to Appear at 9 a.m. Feb. 13 at Kane County Branch Court, 1200 E. Indian Trail, Aurora.
On Dec. 16, police interviewed a veterinarian at the Park Rose Animal Hospital in Roselle about the dog’s condition, the report stated.
The vet stated “that this exam was indicative of animal abuse. He stated that ‘the dog was malnourished and had severe pancreatitis, which is why this is animal abuse,’” according to the report.
In a later interview on Dec. 18, the vet stated, “the dog was a young dog, eight to 10 months old. He had ‘really really profuse watery diarrhea,’” according to the report. “The dog appeared to be underweight.”
Blood work showed the dog had anemia and pancreatitis, the report stated.
Overall, the vet stated the dog was underweight, malnourished and had anemia, which would develop over time, according to the report.
“Typically, it’s a month or two of not being fed properly or from day one,” the vet stated in the report.
“I would feel comfortable to say it’s negligence, like maybe someone was not feeding him right or he has not been to the vet,” the vet stated, according to the report. “That’s possible. The abuse part, I didn’t see any obvious outside trauma, so I can’t say that. But again, what kind of abuse he went through we will never know.”
No food, water
The dog was in a cage that was right on the cement floor of the garage, with no plate for the bottom of the cage, the report stated.
The dog had no food or water or anything to lay on other than the concrete garage floor, the report stated.
While the report has her name redacted in the police report, the person who found Hercules was Heather Caminiti, of Caminiti Cleaning, who told the Kane County Chronicle that she had arrived to clean the townhouse after the tenants had left.
Caminiti “said the dog was very skinny and had a difficult time exiting the crate. (She) motioned that she had to help the dog out of the crate,” the report stated.
A bathroom in the townhouse’s entrance area and a utility closet both had feces on the wall, where Caminiti believed was where the dog was kept, the report stated.
While waiting for an officer to arrive, Caminiti looked in the refrigerator and found two one-pound packages of ham and two packages of hot dogs, which she fed to the dog, the report stated.
She “didn’t want to refuse the dog food because he was so skinny. She said she could count every rib on the dog,” the report stated.
When Santos arrived, the dog went up to him, then returned to her and sat in her lap, the report stated.
'Animals can't be treated like this'
The North Aurora officer told Caminiti that he had never dealt with a situation like this one, and called his sergeant, the report stated.
The officer spoke to Santos, who said he was coming to get the dog, the report stated.
After about 20 minutes, the officer told Caminiti that Santos was going to take the dog and Animal Control was not coming, the report stated.
Caminiti questioned why Animal Control would not come out and evaluate the dog; the officer told his sergeant that the owner was there and willing to take the dog, “so it was determined animal control was not needed,” the report stated.
Santos agreed to let Caminiti take Hercules to Chicagoland Dog Rescue and no paperwork was necessary because the dog was not microchipped, the report stated.
In a later conversation with Caminiti, she told police, “animals can’t be treated like this,” the report stated.
“She would like to see him prosecuted for this … (She) said if it were up to her, that he (Santos) would be in a cage on the concrete floor in the cold weather covered in feces with no food or water. But she agreed this wasn’t nice, either.”
Santos spoke to an officer on Nov. 21, stating that he was just leaving a hospital, the report stated. Santos first said he would come to the department for an interview, then he went back to the hospital, the report stated.
An officer left Santos voice mail messages on Dec. 4, 11, 12 and 14, the report stated.
“The original dog owner has yet to show up for an interview,” Police Chief David Fisher stated in a Dec. 17 email. “At this point, I doubt he will come in."