Hero: Homeless man dials 10111 to rescue buried puppy

2008-07-31 00:00

A HOMELESS man made the pitiful discovery of a border collie puppy, which had been buried alive with two spears inserted into its body, at Camps Drift near the Msunduzi River yesterday morning and rushed to get help for the stricken animal.

The puppy, which is estimated to be about seven weeks old, was buried with a dead black chicken, a mirror, underwear, a sock, two blue and red candles and headgear made from an animal skin.

Thulani Bernard Khwela said he was walking around Camps Drift looking for empty bottles to sell when he heard the puppy howling.

“I looked around but couldn’t see where the noise was coming from,” said Khwela. He followed the howls to a heap of freshly dug soil.

Khwela was shocked to unearth the puppy, which had two spears inserted into its tiny body in the form of a cross. He immediately ran to find help.

“I tried to stop a police van that was driving by, but when it didn’t stop, I proceeded to call 10111,” said Khwela.

Two officers, Inspector Michael Wiid and Constable Sandile Nxumalo, arrived at the scene of the and called the SPCA.

SPCA staff members sedated the puppy and took it away for treatment. The two officers and Khwela also found three other heaps of soil, under which were buried three dead black chickens, candles, spears and underwear and mirrors. It looked like the internal organs had been removed from the chickens.

Although Khwela believes in witchcraft, he said that when he saw the puppy in pain, he did not think twice about lifting it out of the hole to rescue it.

“People believe that when you touch things like this you get cursed, but I think what I did was right and I don’t think it will affect me,” he said.

Khwela survives by selling anything from scrap metal to bottles. He said he has never found anything like this before.

Wiid said the items found at the scene will be retained as evidence.

Police spokeswoman Inspector Joey Jeevan said that a case of cruelty to animals has been opened.

She said the Gauteng-based occult-related crime unit has been contacted and photographs of the remnants will be sent to them to assist in their investigation.

“If necessary they will come down to the scene to investigate further.”

She said that police occult specialists would be unable to comment on the incident until they had seen the photographs.

Robert Deere of the SPCA said the puppy was still alive late yesterday. He said it had serious stab wounds to its lung and had intestinal injuries.

“It’s in a lot of pain. The next 24 hours are critical. We are trying our best to keep it alive, and we’ll see tomorrow if it is going to make it,” he said.

He said the puppy, which has been nicknamed Assi (short for assegai), would be taken to the Border Collie Rescue Centre in Kloof to heal fully before being re-homed if it is not claimed.

Witchcraft: Dog spell to trap victim - read here

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