Starving pit bulls found in East Tennessee

GRAINGER COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The Humane Society says it's the worse case of animal starvation they have ever seen, and they want your help finding whoever is responsible for it.

Two Pitbulls were found in Grainger County, weighing less than half what they should.

The images are graphic, but the Humane Society hopes that sharing this story will help them find the people who are responsible, before it happens again.

Their new names are Heaven and Heavenly, but you can tell by looking at them, their lives have been a living hell.

Rocky Farr with the Grainger County Humane Society says, "This is the thinnest dog I've ever seen alive."

Two people called on separate days last week to report finding these starving dogs. One in the Avondale area and the other on Cherry Street in Rutledge.

Farr says, "This is not something that happened in a few weeks, this is a long-term starvation case. This can't be just I was out on the street running around and I just can't find anything to eat. There's no way."

The two-year-old female pit bulls should weigh about 60 pounds each. Heaven came in at 24 pounds, Heavenly at 27. The Humane Society says just before they became strays, these dogs were most likely prisoners.

Farr says, "No contact with humans. They probably were locked in a pen most of their life."

Even petting can be painful right now. But these dogs, that seem never to have experienced any love will tolerate it. There's no evidence these were ever used as fighters. The wounds you see are the result of starvation, no tissue left between skin and bones. After living such a life, these dogs don't take anything for granted.

Farr says, "When they drank water for the first time here, they actually tasted it and savored it. I've never seen a dog just savor a drink or water as these dogs had. And food, it was a shock to them that they were actually getting to eat."

The owners could be looking at animal cruelty charges, if they are found. And the dogs?

Farr says, "If their temperament stays sweet, we will be able to adopt them out to a good home. But they're probably not going anywhere for a while."

If you know anything about where the dogs came from of who may have owned them, call the humane society at (865) 567-0050, or you can click on the Hot Key.

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