SPRING HILL — A complaint about a neglected dog led Hernando County authorities to a miniature pinscher that had been left in a garage without food or water for at least a week.
A Hernando County man already in jail had an animal cruelty charge added to his record on Wednesday.
The Hernando County Sheriff's Office gave this report: A deputy went to 4340 Dristol Ave. in Spring Hill last month and met with Robert Brosseau, who said there was a malnourished dog in the garage.
The deputy entered the house via an unlocked rear sliding glass door and found the dog in the garage, where she had been confined without food or water.
The dog went into the kitchen and began eating dog food that was scattered on the kitchen floor. An Animal Control officer inspected the dog and found her to be extremely emaciated, dehydrated and covered in fleas.
The dog was taken to an animal emergency site where she was put on an IV to try to re-hydrate her. A veterinarian said the dog has low blood glucose and a subnormal temperature.
The dog's owner, Joseph Carioscia, told a deputy that he and his wife, Michelle, were living at his mother's home at 3269 Blythe Ave. because they could not afford the mortgage at the Dristol Avenue house.
He said he had given the dog away and left her at the house for the new owner to pick up, which was why the sliding door was unlocked. Joseph Carioscia said the new owner was supposed to have picked up the dog weeks ago and that he did not know the dog was still there.
Michelle Carioscia told deputies the dog belongs to them, and Joseph Carioscia was supposed to be feeding the dog because she works. She said he told her that he had been feeding the dog.
Joseph Carioscia, who was already in the Hernando County Jail on an unrelated charge, was charged with animal cruelty and placed on $500 bail.