An injured dog is being nursed back to health after it was dropped off at an Arizona animal shelter with a chain collar deeply embedded in its neck.
The pet, a female mixed breed cattle dog, was found early Saturday morning in an outside holding pen at Pinal County Animal Care and Control in Florence.
The dog was in pain and distress, officials said. The chain was so tightly constricting the dog's neck that her skin was growing around the collar.
An emergency animal medical technician worked on the dog to remove the metal collar.
"This is really heartbreaking," said Animal Care and Control Director Kaye Dickson. "We don't know if this dog was lost and found by the person who dropped it off, or if the owner had kept the dog in this condition. Our officers are working on a few leads at this moment."
Arizona Cattle Dog Rescue picked up the dog on Monday morning so that it could be placed in a foster home for continued wound treatment. She is not available for adoption at this time.
"This case really highlights the need for owners to check the condition of the collars around their pet's neck," Dickson said. "An owner should be able to fit two or three fingers underneath the collar. This is a good way to check if a collar is too tight or too loose."
Metal collars and chains are also very hard on animals because they get hot and can burn the animal's flesh. Collars made from woven nylon, cloth or leather are better choices considering Arizona's hot sun and warm climate.
Animal Care and Control is seeking tips from anyone who might know this dog's history or who its owners are. Email them at AnimalCare@pinalcountyaz.gov.
Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.