A pit bull was recovering from surgery Sunday after being stabbed multiple times during a brutal attack, possibly at the hands of a neighbor, near his owners’ South L.A. home in the Hyde Park area, according to veterinary officials.
Reports of a dog being stabbed near 10th Avenue and West Florence Avenue (map) were made to authorities around 4 a.m. Saturday, Los Angeles Police Department officials said.
Spartacus, the 2-year-old pit bull, underwent a two-hour surgery and received over 1,000 stitches after an unidentified person stabbed him multiple times, Pet Care Veterinary Center Office Manager Alex Kyrklund said.
“It almost looks like they tried to cut his head off, it’s ear-to-ear,” Kyrklund, who worked at the clinic that treated Spartacus, said. “He seriously almost looks like an autopsy victim.”
According to Kyrklund, police also said the dog was hit over the head with a shovel.
“This is a breed that terrifies people, but this breed, this particular dog, sat there and did not attack this person. It’s not the breed to be afraid of, it’s the people,” Kyrklund said. “Somebody tried to kill this dog and sliced this poor baby up. He’s sliced up like you wouldn’t believe.”
Spartacus did not sustain internal injuries or broken bones during the attack, and continued to be, "the sweetest dog in the world,” Kyrklund said.
"He came up bleeding and torn up, but he never did anything but wag his tail once he realized he was safe,” she said. “He wants you to love him, he wants you to pet him, but there are so few spots you can do that.”
The nonprofit organization Ghetto Rescue Ffoundation recovered Spartacus after initial reports of the attack were made.
"Spartacus did nothing wrong, except to be born as a breed hated by some. His family has loved him a long time,” the group stated on Facebook. "We are all thinking of Spartacus with big tears and heavy hearts.”
The organization works with animals and families in need, focusing on lower-income areas in the greater Los Angeles area, according to its website.
The foundation alleged that Spartacus’s owners were part of that low-income community, and encouraged donations be sent to the PayPal account linked to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The LAPD’s Animal Cruelty Task Force was handling the investigation and was not available for comment, but Kyrklund said the attacker was believed to be a neighbor of Spartacus’s owners.
“I’m sure he has justification in his own sick mind for doing what he did. I’m sorry, but there’s no reason to do this,” she added.