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Lawsuit Claims Dog Neglected At Shelter

Posted: 11:00 PM, Nov 18, 2015
Updated: 2015-11-19 00:00:17-05

A Sumner County man has fought back by filing a lawsuit against the county animal control after he said his dog was neglected and poorly treated while in their care.

Hendersonville attorney Roland Mumford filed papers in Sumner County Circuit Court Monday on behalf of his client, Jason Corlew.  The lawsuit stated Sumner County Animal Control did not properly care for a dog under its care in August.

Corlew said his 2-year-old Great Dane “Chief” was taken to Animal Control after he bit a friend’s child. 

When Corlew picked up the dog, he was shocked by his appearance.

“He comes out covered in feces, and has urine burns all over him,” recalled Corlew.  “His paws, the skin was peeling off because he had been standing in feces for so long.”

Corlew estimated Chief lost about 40 pounds and also had a blood infection.  He immediately took him to the veterinarian for a full examination.

Corlew said no one at Sumner County Animal control alerted him to any problems, and seemed unsympathetic when he picked up his dog.

“I kind of got a bad feeling about it from the beginning,” said Corlew.  “I called several times to check on the dog, but my phone calls were never returned.  When I picked him up the sergeant looked at me and said, ‘it’s a stressful environment,’ and walked off.”

“Not one time did Animal Control call my client to talk about the dog’s condition,” said Roland Mumford, Corlew’s attorney.  “He was not given one opportunity to go into the facility to see his dog.”

The lawsuit is seeking $1,000 to cover bills from the veterinarian.  It is also asking the county to upgrade the facility to improve the floors so feces and urine will properly drain away from the animals.

Corlew said the lawsuit isn’t about the money.

“My main goal is to get the word out and put a spotlight on this issue,” said Corlew.  “I hope it doesn’t happen to someone else’s dog.”

Sumner County Sheriff’s Department oversees Animal Control.  Sumner County Sheriff Sonny Weatherford said he couldn’t comment on the pending litigation.