SAN DIEGO – Applications for adoption were being accepted today for two puppies who nearly died after being attacked by a swarm of bees in a Fallbrook field last month as a small grass fire approached.
Woody and Buzz, the two Jack Russell terrier mixes, were among five five-month-old puppies tied to a tree in the 41200 block of De Luz Road when a fire erupted nearby around noon May 31, according to San Diego County Department of Animal Services. The other three dogs died.
The owners of the puppies, a woman and her 16-year-old daughter, live next to the field and told investigators they did not know how the animals ended up tied to a tree in the field. They said the puppies were in their backyard when they left for work and school that day, Animal Services Lt. Dan DeSousa said.
Animal Services continues to investigate who left the puppies tied to the tree. A bowl of water was left out for them, DeSousa said.
Cal Fire Capt. Mike Mohler has said the fire was definitely ”human caused” but has stopped short of calling it arson.
Cal fire halted the small grass fire about 25 feet from where the dogs were tied up. Two of the three dogs that died choked to death, likely as they tried to escape the flames or attacking bees, DeSousa said. The third died of unknown causes.
Woody and Buzz were initially listed in critical condition, with each being strung dozens of times, DeSousa said. Animal Services took custody of them and has provided ”around-the-clock care” since the attack, according to the lieutenant.
They are being cared for at the Carlsbad animal shelter and should be ready to go home with adoptive families in the next two weeks, DeSousa said.
The Department has a special adoption application on its website, www.sddac.com, under “Adoptions” and “Special Adoption Application” for anyone interested in adopting either Buzz or Woody. The applications can be printed from the website and faxed to (619)767-2706 or mailed to the Department of Animal Services at 5480 Gaines St., San Diego, CA 92110, Attention “Buzz and Woody Adoption.” They can also be delivered to any of the three County animal shelters. Applications must be received by the close of business Saturday, June 30.
Staff will review the applications and choose new owners for both puppies by considering who would best meet their individual needs. The adoption fee for each pup is $69.
“There has been a tremendous interest in adopting these pups but only two families will be chosen to give each pup a forever home,” said Danielson. “We encourage anyone who is not selected to consider the other wonderful pets at the shelter hoping for a new home. They all have their own unique stories.”
For more information about how to adopt animals at any of the three County animal shelters or to view photos of other available animals, please visit www.sddac.com/adoptions.asp.
Puppies recovering from bee attack
Fallbrook and De Luz residents are asked to help locate any witnesses or information relating to a situation in which five puppies were tied to a tree directly under an active beehive in De Luz.
According to Dan DeSousa, assistant director for San Diego County’s Department of Animal Services (DAS), Cal Fire firefighters found the dogs when they responded to a wildfire call near the 41200 block of De Luz Road on Thursday, May 31. The puppies were found approximately 25 feet from the fire.
DAS investigators are trying to determine who tied the puppies to a tree and then apparently abandoned them. Cal Fire is investigating the cause of the fire.
“The tree was in a field that is a good ways away from homes, from what I understand,” said DeSousa.
Three of the dogs – a five-month-old Rottweiler and two Jack Russell Terriers – were found dead and the other two had suffered multiple bee stings. The Rottweiler had died from unknown causes, and the terriers had died from strangulation, which most likely occurred as they tried to escape the swarm of bees.
The two surviving puppies, both five months old, are a male Jack Russell terrier mix named Buzz and a male Chihuahua mix named Woody. It is unknown if the person who tied the puppies under the tree knew about the beehive.
“We know who the dogs belonged to, but we are trying to figure out who took the dogs out there,” said DeSousa. “We don’t know if the family or someone else did it.”
Buzz and Woody were in critical condition for several days after being transported to a local emergency veterinary hospital. The puppies have been receiving around-the-clock care. Both dogs were stung dozens of times and due to its critical medical condition, one of the puppies underwent a blood transfusion a few days ago.
“We haven’t counted all of the bee stings, but there are multiple on both dogs,” said DeSousa. “Both dogs are developing abscesses, and the transfusion was a result of the stings. One of the curious things about these dogs is that they couldn’t blink their eyes. They had paralyzed eyelids (opthalmoplegia) so they have been receiving special eye ointment. This is not something we had ever come across.”
The DAS Spirit Fund is covering the costs of their care.
“The Spirit Fund is used to cover expenses for treatments that are above and beyond what the county can justify spending on animals,” said DeSousa.
DAS staff expects the puppies to be moved to their shelter in Carlsbad soon, but because of their injuries, they are not available for adoption at this time.
Anyone interested in helping pay for the continued care of these puppies can donate to the DAS Spirit Fund at www.sddac.com/donations.asp.
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