- Associated Press - Thursday, August 20, 2015

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Four stray dogs have been attacked and severely burned with a chemical agent over the past few weeks in Lancaster, with two so badly injured they had to be euthanized, authorities said.

Investigators want to know if the attacks on a golden retriever and three pit bulls were related, what chemical or material was used, and if there are any more victims, said Danny Ubario, deputy director of Los Angeles County Animal Care and Control. He said there was no evidence to show that the cases were related.

“It is suspicious, because it is not every day that four dogs come in in that condition,” he said. “I wouldn’t say it’s normal, but it’s not out of the ordinary either,” he said.

Similar attacks have been going on for years, said Alan Schulman, owner and director of surgery at The Animal Care Center in Los Angeles.

The dogs were all found in Lancaster and none had tags or microchips for identification, said Schulman, who was treating one of the survivors, named Fergus by caretakers. The other survivor, Bella, was still at an animal shelter in Lancaster.

It doesn’t look like Fergus will need surgery.

“We are managing his pain and discomfort and making sure his wounds don’t get infected,” Schulman said.

The pain medicine is helping the dogs, and what they are feeling is tightness in their skin, the veterinarian said. “It’s like they are wearing a girdle two sizes too small.”

Battery acid could cause this sort of injury, he explained.

“What happened was a malicious act, not an accident,” Schulman added.

Residents have raised about $20,000 to help with medical costs for the dogs.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has offered a $2,500 reward for the arrest of the person responsible.


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