PHOENIX — Maricopa County sheriff’s deputies arrested a man for animal abuse after a puppy with two broken legs was taken to a local veterinarian.
Detectives said the puppy’s former owner, Lyman Kenneth Morkunas II, admitted to knowing it was injured from a fight with an adult dog and did not take it to get medical treatment.
A couple who took in the injured pit bull puppy to care for it told detectives that Morkunas bragged about using a 16-pound sledgehammer to break up the fight, according to MCSO spokesman Sgt. Brandon Jones.
Detectives arrested Morkunas on one count of felony animal abuse. He was booked into the Fourth Avenue Jail on Friday and released shortly after his initial appearance.
Miles was 8 or 9 weeks old when the couple took him to the animal hospital on March 22. One of his legs had a severe fracture to the “elbow” joint while the other was shattered all the way through the bone. Miles also had multiple puncture wounds and a major infection had set in due to the delay in immediate medical treatment.
The couple said they couldn’t afford the treatment for Miles and signed him over to the animal hospital. Panacea Animal Wellness Sanctuary (PAWS), an animal rescue, has been supplying funds for its care.
Miles will likely have to have one leg amputated if he doesn’t receive the specialized surgery that’s required to save it.
The animal rescue group needs to raise the necessary funds so they can save the dog’s leg. The surgery will cost between $3,000 and $5,000.