A Lancaster County breeder and his wife held an English bulldog puppy last year for medical intervention with a hot kitchen knife, according to the Pennsylvania SPCA.
New Holland’s Ray Hoover Martin has been charged with two cases of animal cruelty, including a crime of willful or knowledgeable torture of an animal and an offense for neglecting to veterinarian an animal with imminent threat of grievous bodily harm, SPCA reported.
Martin, 48, was examined after a veterinarian contacted the Humane Law Enforcement Team at the Pennsylvania SPCA on July 3, 2020 after an English bulldog puppy was brought for foster care.
According to the SPCA, the vet found that the puppy was missing some of its eye anatomy, but that surgical records of the condition were not provided to the person who purchased the puppy. The breeder, later identified as Martin, had admitted removing it himself.
When humane law enforcement officers examined Martin, they learned that the puppy had an inflamed or herniated gland on its third eyelid, commonly known as the “cherry eye,” according to the SPCA. Martin had admitted to the investigators that he had removed the cherry eye himself.
Investigators found that Martin’s wife was holding the puppy on her kitchen table while Martin heated the knife. He burned and cut out the puppy’s cherry eye, the SPCA said. No anesthetics or pain medication were used.
“This animal cruelty case is particularly dire,” said Nicole Wilson, director of humane law enforcement and protection for the Pennsylvania SPCA.
Wilson said by taking medical care of the puppy into his own hands, Martin burned and excised a significant portion of the puppy’s anatomy without considering the pain and suffering of the vulnerable animal.
“As the puppy ages, the eye will likely need lifelong medical treatment to maintain basic eye health,” added Wilson. “These allegations are not just about getting justice for this puppy, they’re also about making sure this never happens again.”
The SPCA reports that no other animals have been confiscated from Martin, but the puppy has been placed with a loving family who continue to provide for the puppy’s medical needs.
The SPCA urges anyone with information on this or any other incident of animal cruelty to contact the Pa. Call the SPCA Cruelty Line at 866-601-SPCA. Tips can be left anonymously.
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