Couple is arrested after they starved dog so badly he started to chew his own leg off

A couple starved one of their dogs to the point the poor animal started to chew on his leg to survive. They’re now behind bars for ill-treatment of animals, while poor Luke fights for his life under the care of a nonprofit rescue organization.

When police officers arrived at Jessica James,32 and Skylar Craft, 38, home in Ware Shoals, North Carolina, they met a terrible sight. One of their dogs, a Great Dane they said was called Lucifer, was in such a poor condition that his ribs were visible through his coat.

The pup was stuck on a runner cable, and there were no signs or food or water near him. Half of his back-right foot was gone, as officers realized in horror the dog had chewed on it in an attempt to save himself from starvation.

“When I approached the fence I could see a very skinny black Great Dane with an injury to his back right leg. As he got closer I could see that over half of his leg was gone,” one of the responding officers from the Ware Shoals Police Department told Fox News.

"He was a Fighter and a Survivor when no one cared about him."

CONFLICTING DECLARATIONS

The first person to notice the neglected animal was a neighbor, that didn’t hesitate in making the report to the police. “It’s pretty bad. Hurting something that can’t hurt you? I’ve just seen too much. I don’t have much faith in people, not anymore,” the anonymous neighbor told Index-Journal.

According to reports, James and Craft told police that they had put Lucifer, now renamed Luke, on the runner cable because he had tried to jump a fence. They also stated they had decided to treat his wound at home because of a lack of funds to go to a vet, but they had different declarations about how long the dog had been on the runner and injured.

They were charged with ill treatment of animals.

LUKE IS FIGHTING FOR HIS LIFE

Meanwhile, sweet Luke, the “Gentle Giant” as he new caregivers have nicknamed him, is fighting for his life under the care of Noah’s Ark Rescue. It turns out; his leg is the last of the vet’s worries.

Because of his starvation, Luke developed some severe respiratory and heart conditions. His eyes are sunken into the back of his eye socket and he also has liver problems and an infection on his leg, which doctors decided it's going to be amputated once the dog can resist the operation.

Luke is now going back and forth between the ICU and the organization’s refugee because the dog is still fearful and anxious and hospitals tend to make animals even more nervous with all the strange lights, sounds, and smells.

Jessica Smith, president of Noah’s Ark, has been giving almost daily updates on Luke to people following his tragic story while asking for donations for his medical costs. He has people from all over the world cheering for him, and although his condition is not exactly hopeful, Smith believes Luke has come this far because of his will to live.

“He is a strong-minded dog that chewed off his leg to survive.  He was a Fighter and a Survivor when no one cared about him.  He knows we Love and Adore him and are doing everything possible to give him what he needs to Survive."

THE LATEST UPDATE

As of the last update on December 7, Luke is still waiting for some test results from his liver and intestine. The tissue on his mangled limb is granulating, which seems to indicate the new antibiotics they’re giving him are working.

The dog is back at the facility and, according to Smith, was happy to see everyone once he arrived.

“We want Luke to be in a peaceful environment where he can mentally and physically relax.  He will get to go on short walks and be outside with a big coat on to give him warmth — lots and lots of fresh air to help him with his Respiratory Infection,” she wrote. “Today is going to be a great day for our G

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