PARKER COUNTY — At first, the animal control officer thought it was a stuffed animal lying next to the front steps on Tumbleweed Drive in rural Parker County.
As he got closer, he thought it was a dead dog — scabby skin and bones, with just a few tufts of fur.
Then she breathed, and Matt Anderson's blood began to boil. How could anyone ignore such suffering?
According to an affidavit filed by the Parker County Sheriff's Office, the woman inside the residence said she was aware of the dog's condition, but said the pup belonged to her son, who had moved to Fort Worth.
On Wednesday, deputies arrested both for cruelty to non-livestock.
The dog's owner, Jose Burciaga, told us on the way to jail that he thought the dog was being treated for a skin disorder.
His mother, Elizabeth Lopez, also said the dog had received some treatment. She sat in handcuffs in front of her home.
Animal control supervisor Karen Kessler sighed at the dog's condition. "How can you be a breathing human being and not care?" she asked.
Kessler said the dog had not been given food, water or care. She pointed out that anyone entering the home would have seen the dog — a six-to-eight-month-old female pit bull.
A veterinarian euthanized the pup a few hours later, but not before officers named her "Belle."
More arrests are expected.