UPDATE: Suspected drowning of dog being investigated

Joe Gibbons
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Two St. John's Regional Fire Department (SJRFD) firefighters carry the remains of a deceased dog that was retrieved from a pond just off of Blackhead Road by members of the SJRFD's cold water rescue team on Sunday afternoon after the SJRFD was notified by the city's humane services of a dog that was partially submerged in the waters.

A case of possible animal cruelty is being investigated in St. John’s involving the suspected drowning of a dog near Blackhead Road.

On Sunday on the north side of the road just past Blackhead Crescent, police, emergency and Humane Services personnel were a few hundred feet in the nearby woods retrieving the remains of the animal and investigating the case.

"The City of St. John's Humane Services contacted us earlier today stating there was a dog reported to them that was half submerged in a pond just off of Blackhead Road,” said St. John's Regional Fire Department (SJRFD) Capt. Craig Cox of the West-End Fire Station. “On further investigation we found that the dog had been tethered to a rock and dumped in the pond.”

He added that SJRFD cold water rescue team members were also dispatched to the scene and went into the pond and retrieved the dead animal.

An employee of Humane Services was also on the scene and took possession of the animal once two firefighters carried the body from the woods on a stretcher.

"The RNC were contacted and they are currently in there on the scene doing a further investigation into the matter," added Capt. Cox.

When asked by The Telegram, the Humane Services worker was unable to comment on the incident or say what kind of breed the deceased dog was.

Cindy McGrath, a supervisor with Humane Services who spoke with The Telegram later, confirmed the dog’s remains were in their care but said while the matter is under investigation, there was little else she could provide in the way of information.

McGrath did raise the point that at this time it’s not certain if the dog was drowned or if this was a means of disposal of a body.

“The only thing we did was retrieve the remains from the fire department. We have no further news other than that. We don’t know how the dog died. We don’t have anything at this particular point.”

McGrath said Humane Services would have further comment when they find out more following the RNC investigation into the matter.

Organizations: Humane Services, SJRFD, Regional Fire Department West-End Fire Station

Geographic location: Blackhead Road, St. John's

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Recent comments

  • Darrell
    September 07, 2013 - 09:38

    B'ys its just a dog...relax!

  • Billy
    September 04, 2013 - 15:49

    Not quite sure what happened here. I would hope but doubt that I would receive such sympathies if such a terrible thing happened to me.

  • bob
    September 02, 2013 - 22:44

    Catch the people who did this please!!!

  • Kay
    September 02, 2013 - 21:44

    What is wrong with people. Really? Tying a rock around a defenseless dog's neck and throwing it in a pond? I hope they catch the person who did this and if not, I hope karma comes full circle.

  • Jenn
    September 02, 2013 - 19:06

    They are not sure if the dog drowned or if it was a means to dispose of the body!!!! Give me a break. If the dog was already deceased, would you not have it buried or call animal control? Why would you tether it to a rock and throw it into a pond if you weren't killing it? Someone must know what happened and should come forward. This person (s) need to be dealt with.

  • t.c
    September 02, 2013 - 18:42

    If this dog was deliberty drowned and this person is found he or she should get at least 4-6 years in prison.We are seeing to much of this bull s... going on.

  • Kelly
    September 02, 2013 - 16:36

    Please find the garbage who did this to a poor, defenseless animal.

  • Danny
    September 02, 2013 - 15:18

    Sad, sad, sad...

  • Crystal Wheeler
    September 02, 2013 - 11:07

    I am upset over this story, and I hope they find out whoever did this and give them absolute hell. Its people like this that walk our streets then end up hurting or killing other people. It's a sad world we live in, and I cannot believe this crap still goes on. :(

  • Animal Lover
    September 02, 2013 - 10:46

    No matter if this poor animal was sick or not, no one has the right to do this. Too many animal abusers get a slap on the wrist, if that, for inflicting pain and suffering to an animal such as a dog or cat. There is more punishment for killing a moose off season or catching fish. This story sickens me as it seems to be a cowardly common thing for such idiots to do. My only hope is that Karma comes back at these cowards.

  • Zabrina
    September 02, 2013 - 10:41


  • Paul Reddy
    September 02, 2013 - 10:36

    Very traumatic to do this to a defenceless animal.

  • dorothy Harris
    September 02, 2013 - 09:54

    I am devastated. How can someone take a dog, tie a rock around its neck, walk out into the water, and drown it. Did you watch it drown? Probably not, bet that would have been too hard. Did you listen to it bark as it struggled to breathe? Probably not. You probably exited that area ASAP. There are so many other ways for you to have gotten rid of your dog; SPCA, Litters and Critters, ask a friend. May you see your dog's face every time you sleep because Karma says, "What goes around, comes around."

  • Elaine Coffey Dalton
    September 02, 2013 - 09:12

    I cannot believe that our Nl people who are so renowned for kindness and caring can actually be so cruel. I have been reading of the cruelty to animals mostly dogs and cats . I find tears flowing and a lump in my throat after reading and seeing pictures of gross cruelties. Please, people, have a heart.

  • yo mama
    September 02, 2013 - 09:11

    Eye for and eye for the criminal.

  • carogers
    September 02, 2013 - 08:16

    I hope they find the owner of this dog. This is beyond my understanding. A dog loves unconditionally what makes a person be so evil.

  • Jeanette
    September 02, 2013 - 03:53

    For someone to be able to do this to a helpless animal, In my opinion, they can do this to a person....They need to be found and prosecuted, which will probably be a slap on the wrist...If the dog was not wanted there are multiple places to drop them off..If this was for the "thrill" of it...You are a Coward!!

  • leah
    September 01, 2013 - 22:33

    Poor baby to go through such suffering like this,how very sad this upsets me very. Much to read this my God what kind of sick. Person done thisto this dog,,RIP baby.I hope this person is found and prosecuted..you deserve what ever punishment you get