ST. PETERSBURG — Someone tried to get rid of a sickly puppy by drowning her.
The emaciated 4-month-old pit bull terrier mix was found floating in a canal with a chain, a lock, an electrical cord and a leather collar all wrapped around her neck, according to the Pet Pal Animal Shelter.
"Instead of getting her medical help or feeding her, they tried to discard her," said Scott Daly, the shelter's executive director. "It's definitely intentional."
A good Samaritan rescued the puppy Wednesday from the canal off Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street and 26th Avenue S, then took the dog to the shelter.
The rescuer saved the puppy from a horrible death, Daly said. The dog was dehydrated, malnourished and suffering from a severe skin infection caused by the skin mite Demodex.
"She is very, very underweight," Daly said. "She has pus coming out of her skin."
The shelter named the dog Lotus, and she is being treated there with antibiotics.
Anyone with information about the previous owner of the dog is asked to call the Pet Pal Animal Shelter at (727) 328-7738. Callers can remain anonymous.
Lotus' progress can be tracked on the shelter's Facebook page.