UPDATE:Woman arrested after abandoning dogs outside Mesa animal shelterPosted: Updated:
UPDATE: A woman is under arrest for animal cruelty after leaving a number of small dogs in a cage out in front of the Mesa Animal Care and Control facility.
Melonee Burgess, 28, was booked into jail on two counts of felony animal cruelty and one count of animal cruelty abandonment.
Burgess admitted she didn't care for the dogs and kept them locked up in her apartment bathroom.
PHOENIX -- One dog is recovering and another had to be put to sleep after being left in a kennel outside Maricopa County Animal Care and Control's East Valley facility.
Tuesday - Friday Adoptions, lost & found: 11 a.m.-6 p.m. All other services: 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Saturday, Sunday All services: 11 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Monday All services: 11 a.m.6- p.m.
MCACC does not accept owner surrenders on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
Employees arriving for work found the dogs early Thursday morning. According to Aprille Hollis of MCACC, the dogs were skins and bones, barely clinging to life. Once they opened the kennel, the employees made an even more gruesome discovery -- the skull of a third dog. Hollis said it looks like the two dogs might have tried to eat the third dog to stay alive.
It's not known how longs the dogs were in the cage. Nobody saw who left the kennel outside the facility and that shelter is not equipped with cameras.
One of the surviving dogs had to be humanely euthanized. The other spent the night in an animal hospital and is now in the care of Arizona Chihuahua Rescue.
Hollis said that this is not the first time shelter workers have found animals in kennels left outside the facility. Earlier in the week, for example, an employee found a cat in a carrier.
"We find it appalling to hear about animals being left to starve and dependent on themselves to survive," said Max Wilson, chairman of the Board of Supervisors. "Not only is it cruel to abandon your pets, it is against the law."
MCACC will take in animals if owners can no longer care for them, but the owners must come to the shelter in person during business hours.
"If you can no longer care for your pets, turn them into the shelter before they suffer needlessly," said MCACC director Dr. Rodrigo Silva.