Dog put to sleep after being shot in Tarpon Springs, family searching for answers

Radar is the tan dog seen in the photo. (Photo provided by family)

TARPON SPRINGS, Fla. (WFLA) — Tarpon Springs police are looking into a shooting that severely injured a family’s dog named Radar.

Jennifer Grove said she and her husband Brad went to search for their dog after hearing gunshots in the neighborhood around 11 p.m. Thursday.

Grove said Radar crawled underneath the fence and got loose.

“Just devastated. I mean he was, he was part of the family,” Jennifer Grove said. “So sweet.”

The Groves had no luck locating him Thursday night.

On Friday, they got a call from Westlake Animal Hospital staff letting them know Radar had been brought in by police and was badly injured.

“When I walked up to the dog he wasn’t able to move. It was alert and coherent, however, he just picking up his head and whimpering,” said Tarpon Springs Police Officer Brittney Rose.

Officer Rose took him to Westlake Animal Hospital, where staff contacted the Groves. Staff said the dog had been shot in the neck, but with what kind of gun, is unclear.

“Just cruel. We just want him found,” said Grove.

The Groves picked up Radar and took him to his veterinarian at Palm Harbor Animal Hospital where they learned the bullet severed his spine.

The injury paralyzed his back legs.

“It had revealed that it had broken one of the bones in his upper back and had probably severed his spinal cord,” said Veterinarian Holly Sullivant. “It was not a good situation. It was very, very sad.”

 

 

The Groves took Radar home one last time before saying goodbye.

“He would whimper throughout the night. Every breath he took, he whimpered on the way out. Every exhale. He couldn’t live like that,” said Grove.

Radar was put down Saturday.

The family is offering a $300 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of the shooter.

“I mean, if I heard the shots, somebody else did, somebody closer heard it,” said Grove.

The bullet was sent to a lab to be tested. The case is under investigation.

“With the extent of his injuries being that his wound was larger than a pellet gun, that now it’s going to be looked at as an animal cruelty case,” said Officer Rose.

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