Dog abused: protest in Kokstad

2009-01-28 00:00

The community of Kokstad is threatening to protest outside the courts there if a man who is accused of dragging a dog behind his vehicle on a rope is not prosecuted immediately.

The police delay in arresting the man has also angered the Kokstad SPCA.

The man allegedly punished his dog, allegedly for biting his son, by dragging it behind his vehicle and then abandoning it in the bush.

The man is a teacher at a junior secondary school in Mount Ayliff, Eastern Cape, and lives in Kokstad. He is also a well-known politician in the region. His name cannot be published as he has not yet been charged, but seven counts of animal cruelty have been lodged by the Kokstad police.

Local community members are shocked by the incident. Some asked what schoolchildren would learn from a teacher who is capable of committing such brutal acts.

The chairman of the Kokstad SPCA, Douglas Wolhuter, criticised the police’s reaction as being too slow, saying the information provided to the police is more than enough to arrest the man. He said people who can do such things to animals can possibly do the same to human beings.

National spokeswoman of the National council of SPCA Chris Kush was also shocked to hear that the suspect has not yet been charged and arrested. “We are shocked, horrified, and this is completely unacceptable,” she said.

The dog’s tongue was almost severed near the base after being dragged along the tar, and the pads of its paws were cut and grazed, said eyewitnesses.

Kush told The Witness that when SPCA workers arrived on the scene, the injured dog looked up and wagged its tail. It was rushed to the local veterinarian, but had to be put down because of the severity of its injuries.

Police spokeswoman Superintendent Zandra Wiid denied that the police unduly delayed their response, saying they were still waiting to obtain an eyewitness statement.

She added that the culprit will be charged soon.

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