SELDEN, N.Y. (AP) — A 4-month-old puppy is recovering from emergency surgery at a Long Island animal hospital and his owner is under arrest after police said he beat the dog and then claimed it was hit by a car.
The chocolate Labrador retriever, named Coco, was brought to a veterinary hospital with leg and rib fractures on Wednesday. Suffolk County police say 35-year-old owner Daniel Keelan told the staff the injuries were from a car, but the staffers determined the fractures weren’t consistent with such a collision and called police.
Keelan was arraigned at a court hearing held via video Saturday. His lawyer, Brian Trodden, entered not guilty pleas to animal cruelty and child endangerment charges, Newsday reported.
Suffolk County Assistant District Attorney Raquel Tisi said Keelan’s neighbor saw him throw the puppy off the front porch and against a wall, then repeatedly punch and kick the dog in front of his two children.
“This is just horrific and no child, no person, should have to witness this if it indeed occurred,” Judge James Matthews said.
The judge placed Keelan on supervised release.
A second puppy was removed from Keelan’s home and was to be brought to an animal shelter after an examination.