PUPPY LOVE | Protect And Serve | leader-call.com

2023-02-22 06:39:56 By : Mr. Mike Ma

Cloudy skies early, then partly cloudy this afternoon. High 76F. Winds SW at 10 to 15 mph..

Partly cloudy skies this evening will become overcast overnight. Low 64F. Winds S at 10 to 15 mph. Cleaning Wet Wipes

PUPPY LOVE | Protect And Serve | leader-call.com

Jones County Sheriff's Deputy Regina Newton with four puppies that were abandoned on Township Road. (Photo submitted)

Jones County Sheriff's Deputy Regina Newton with four puppies that were abandoned on Township Road. (Photo submitted)

Newton keeps busy with animal calls

Jones County Sheriff’s Deputy Regina Newton is an animal lover, with two dogs living with her. And, for a short time on Monday, the brood grew to six after she rescued four puppies abandoned near a home on Township Road.

Newton, who has spent 11 years in law enforcement with the LPD and JCSD, received the call from dispatch Monday. While she is capable of answering any call, animal calls are her specialty.

When she arrived, she saw the four pups — estimated at being only a couple weeks old — with no sign of when they were dumped or who dumped them.

“They could eat, but their eyes were still cloudy,” Newton said in estimating their ages. 

She loaded the four into a cardboard box in the back of her patrol cruiser and headed to her apartment, where she transferred the puppies to a different box with plenty of “pee-pee” pads. She fed them and gave them water as the search for homes began.

She took to Facebook live, holding two puppies in each hand, seeking a rescue or foster homes. The video was shared on the Leader-Call’s site and the response was overwhelming.

“Immediately, people started sharing it,” she said. “People started reaching out. You want them taken care of, but you want to make sure where they go they will be safe. In the end, I had a veterinarian out of Hattiesburg reach out to me and ask if she could have the puppies at her clinic.”

After being vetted in Hattiesburg, the puppies were taken in by the Pretty Pittie Committee — a rescue organization — as their wards and said they will be sure they get good homes and be in foster homes later that afternoon, Newton said.

There was no video of the dogs being dumped. “That happens all the time,” Newton said.

Newton is no stranger to animal rescues. She was on the scene of a cat stuck under the Interstate 59 overpass in South Laurel. A photo of her holding the cat was published in the Leader-Call.

In 2019, again while with the LPD, Newton discovered a dog whimpering in distress and it led to a felony charge. It was believed that led to the first case in the city in which suspects were charged under the Mississippi Dog and Cat Protection Law of 2011.

On Wednesday during an interview, Newton was working a case in the county involving an elderly woman who began feeding cats around her home. Now, there are about 10 and she can no longer take care of them.

Last Friday, Newton and members of Homeward Horse Haven, a rescue group, responded to a report of a malnourished horse in Jones County. The horse, which the owner voluntarily surrendered, was believed to be about 3 years old and is now recovering at the Hattiesburg rescue. After a battery of tests, it was believed that the horse is older, but had been malnourished for years, the rescue reported. 

“Malnutrition can do crazy things, especially in a growing body,” the rescue wrote on Facebook. “I would feel better about him being older considering he was ridden. Either way, in the end all that matters is he is safe and comfortable. Whether he grows up or stays small won’t change our care plan.” 

Whether cats, abandoned dogs or horses, Newton knows the next case is just around the corner.

“I have cried … I have been mad,” Newton said of working on animal rescues. “You can’t save all of them, as much as you would like.”

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