Starved dogs being treated at shelter, owner arrested

Photo Credit: Courtesy: Conway Police Department

Two malnourished dogs seized by Conway Police Department's Animal Control office are currently being treated at the Horry County Animal Care Center. Kelly Bonome, with the care center, tells NewsChannel 15 that the more severely of the two dogs, Sasha, weighs about 26 pounds when a healthy dog Sasha's size should weigh about 50 pounds.

"This is the equivalent of a healthy man weighing 180 pounds coming in at about 90 pounds," pointed out Bonome.

Conway police charged Cleveland Fladger, Jr., 55, of Conway, with Animal Cruelty when an officer responded to Fladger's home Thursday after receiving an anonymous call that his dogs were being neglected.

The officer says two dogs at the home seemed to be in good health. But the other two were severely undernourished, Sasha the worst of all. Police said in a press release, "one dog appeared to be under weight and dehydrated, and another was extremely emaciated from apparent starvation."

Employees at the Animal Care Center say Sasha is being fed 3/4 of a cup of dog food every two hours and being closely monitored. They say if you feed the dog too much it would overload the animals system, shut down it's organs and she would eventually die as she would not know when to say when.

Officials do expect the dogs to make a full recovery, though they add that it will take anywhere from two to three months.

This is the second day in a row that a dog was seized from a Conway home and taken to the Animal Care Center. Thursday, another Conway man was arrested and charged with ill treatment of animals, a felony. Len Eldon Crenshaw, 40, was arrested after police say his dog had several collars embedded in its neck at his home.

Bonome says seeing animals treated this way can be tough. Just last year, the city of Conway had 10 animal cruelty cases. But Bonome stresses to her staff to keep focused and just take one case at a time.

"It's something that I try to teach staff and public if you change someone's mind about animal cruelty and change one person's mind about how to be responsible pet owner or change their mind about animal cruelty or any of those things to be more responsible then over a year it's 365 people you've affected no telling how many animals," she said while stressing that "people should take responsibility for their pets and keep an eye for other people's pets that they feel are being treated inhumanely."

Bonome stressed that "people should take responsibility for their pets and keep an eye for other people's pets that they feel are being treated inhumanely."

Bonome said don't be afraid to call authorities if you suspect someone mistreating their pets.

Cleveland Fladger, Jr. is scheduled to appear in court February 23.