The three pit bull mixes were taken by the Town of Hempstead Animal Control to the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter in Wantagh, where a veterinary examination of the animals found that they had advanced stages of mange that had been untreated for several months.
"This sweet family, affectionately named Angel, Max and Sally, is now safe in our care," according to the North Shore Animal League website. "Our medical team is doing everything possible to help them find physical and emotional comfort as they begin their long journey to healing."
Because the condition has been left untreated for so long, it will take many months for the dogs’ inflamed, infected skin to heal, according to shelter officials.
Acting on a tip, county officials responded to a Roosevelt residence on Nov. 7. Upon arrival, detectives say they saw a dog with blistered skin, bloody raw open sores, cracked paws, and severe swelling to the face and eyes. Further investigation revealed two more dogs with similar injuries, according to county officials.Shawn Christopher, the owner of the dogs, was arrested and charged with one count of animal neglect for each of the animals.
Earlier this month, Nassau District Attorney Kathleen Rice began a countywide Council on Animal Protection & Safety to provide a forum for local government and non-profit agencies in Nassau County to coordinate efforts on cases like this one.
North Hempstead officials recently agreed to participate in the countywide effort to increase the reporting and prosecution of crimes against animals.
Charter members of the council include representatives from all five major local governments in Nassau County: the Towns of Hempstead, North Hempstead and Oyster Bay; and the Cities of Long Beach and Glen Cove.
Members of the public may report animal crime directly to the animal crimes unit in four ways:
- In person at the county's criminal complaint Unit at 272 Old Country Rd.
- Call the 24 hour Animal Crimes Tipline at (516) 571-2245.
- Fill out Internet complaint at www.nassauda.org.
- Email to AnimalCrimesUnit@nassauda.org.