PUTNAM COUNTY, Fla. -- A local family is getting comfortable with a new and playful family member -- a puppy named Beecher who is the lone survivor of what investigators are calling a case of animal cruelty.
Someone abandoned a dog and four puppies near a trash collection site in Welaka earlier this month.
"The dog was living on the porch and found to be living in its own feces," said Putnam County Sheriff Deputy Paula Priester.
The dog died. A passerby took the puppies home but only one survived.
Investigators believed the dogs were malnourished and abused.
Deputies arrested one suspect last week. Deondra Milledge, 27, was charged with five counts of animal cruelty. She told investigators her boyfriend was the one who abandoned the dogs.
Investigators issued a warrant for Ryan Flynn this week. Deputies arrested him in Welaka on Monday. He faces two counts of causing cruel death by pain and suffering to an animal, and three counts of abandonment of an animal.
"He dumped them on the side of the road and left them for dead," said Deputy Priester.
Ben Byers is the passerby who rescued the puppies. He named the lone survivor Beecher after the street he was found on.
Beecher has undergone a blood transfusion and has gained one pound in a week. The community has rallied around the puppy who at only seven weeks old has beat all odds. His very own Facebook page, "Hope for Beecher", has received hundreds of comments. People have even donated money to help pay for his veterinary visits.
The Byers family says Beecher is expected to make a full recovery.
The Putnam County Sheriff's Office encourages people to call them to arrange a pick-up if they can no longer care for their pet. You can also take them to the local animal shelter or humane society.
If you'd like to help the Byers family with Beecher's veterinary expenses you can call the Animal Medical Clinic at 386-328-4613.