A Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office detective who encountered an abandoned puppy at an illegal marijuana cultivation in the Cuyama Valley is adopting the 3-month-old dog.
While eradicating an illegal marijuana cultivation on Wednesday, sheriff’s detectives and deputies conducted a safety sweep of the property, according to sheriff’s spokeswoman Kelly Hoover.
A small puppy was found lying on a pile of plastic, and surrounded by fertilizers and hazardous chemicals, she said.
The puppy was slow to respond and lethargic, Hoover said.
A sheriff’s detective searching the area determined that the puppy had been abandoned with no food or water in temperatures around 90 degrees, Hoover said.
Based on the puppy’s condition and the fact that he was abandoned, detectives got permission from the county Sheriff/Fire Air Support Unit being used for the operation to transport the pup to Santa Maria for medical care.
The puppy was lethargic and salivating profusely when he arrived at the Santa Barbara County Animal Shelter in Santa Maria, and he was reported to have vomited, said Stacy Silva, the animal center’s community outreach coordinator.
Parvovirus tests on the dog came back negative, and he was transferred to PETS Hospital for observation.
“He was returned to the Santa Maria Animal Center the following morning as a bright, playful (and) happy 3-month-old puppy,” Silva said. “He will remain in our care until his holding period is up and then be reunited and adopted by his rescuers.”
The detective, whose name is being withheld because of his assignment, said he is pleased to have the puppy join his family and become a new addition to the sheriff’s office too.
“This little guy made quite the impression on every detective and deputy on scene,” the detective said. “He is a little fighter, and has quite the story to tell. I am excited to give him the home he deserves.”
The owner is still deciding on a name for the pup.
“The Special Investigations Bureau would like the residents of Santa Barbara County to know that we are not solely concerned with eradicating illegal marijuana,” the detective added. “We are also equally concerned with identifying the illegal disposal and use of hazardous chemicals as well as identifying animal cruelty, abuse and abandonment issues.”