A severely malnourished dog, left chained up in the backyard of a South Philadelphia home, has been rescued along with several other canines after animal control officials raided the owner's home.
Officers from the Pennsylvania SPCA descended on the rowhome along the 2100 block of S. 22nd Street around 7 p.m. on Friday after getting a report of a dog being locked up outside.
Upon arrival, officers found a severely emaciated dog tied up to a poll in the backyard.
"The dog was a 4-year-old Pit bull dog that was just skin over bones," said George Bengal, Director of Humane Law Enforcement.
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Five other dogs and two puppies, in poor condition, were found in the basement of the house.
"A strong smell of urine and feces when we went into the basement," he said. "The animals were kept in cages without food or water."
The sick dog was rushed to the PSPCA animal hospital and shelter in the Hunting Park section of the city for emergency care, but did not survive the ride.
The pet owners, 30-year-old Miller Pitz and his girlfriend, 44-year-old Karlin Johnson, were arrested for allegedly neglecting the animals. They didn't respond to questions about the animals' state as they were led off to jail.
"At first I thought this was a breeding situation, but it appears these were just pets," Bengal said. "That individual that was just arrested wasn't taking care of them."