On Jan. 12, 911 dispatch received a call about a dog that was running at large in Farber. The owner, Gary McCurdy Sr., who had already received multiple tickets for various animal violations, was later issued additional citations by the Farber police as a result of the call.
On Feb. 28, while there were no officers on duty in Farber, the dog was again running at large, and this time it bit a child who was nearby in a neighboring yard. The child was taken to the hospital, treated for the bite and later released.
Responding to the call, officers from the Audrain County Sheriff’s Department came to the scene and as a result, issued a 10-day quarantine for the dog. Because there was no available kennel in Farber, the dog was quarantined on McCurdy’s property. The dog was labeled as a vicious animal by Farber police, which prompted numerous requirements for McCurdy. Some of the requirements included posting dangerous dog signs on both the kennel and in the yard, and the requirement that the dog must be muzzled at all times when it is outside.
During the quarantine period, Chief Raymond Bumbales kept tabs on the situation, with the biggest concern that the dog might have rabies. After determining that it did not have rabies, concerns about the conditions of the kennel evolved. Inside of the chain link kennel there was a small dog cage that the dog was confined to during the quarantine. Without a proper shelter from the severe weather at the time, and concerns about the dog having enough food, Bumbales made attempts to contact McCurdy about the situation.
McCurdy was issued 10 counts of state charges, which were forwarded to the Audrain County prosecuting attorney’s office for animal neglect for the 10 days that the dog was quarantined. Bumbales stated that the biggest concern was the lack of care for the animal’s well-being.
“There was no shelter, no roof, no blanket or hay provided for the dog,” said Bumbales. “There was snow on the ground and the temperatures were at times in the single digits during this period. I get it, everyone looks at it as a bad and vicious dog because it bit someone. But you cannot just leave it out in the elements to potentially die. You have to treat it humanely. I repeatedly requested that McCurdy give it proper shelter,” added Bumbales.
According to Bumbales, McCurdy had many warnings and tickets issued dating back to last year for issues with this dog. Some of those charges included failure to register a dog, failure to register for a kennel license, improper containment, and dog running at large causing a bite. As a result of the dog being considered a vicious animal, the owner was required to provided color photos of the dog to the city clerk, which he failed to do. He also failed to post the required signs, and to muzzle the dog while it was outside.
McCurdy is scheduled to appear in court at the end of April. Bumbales stated that since the charges were filed, McCurdy has either sold or given the dog to someone outside of the county and it is no longer on the property.
All information has been obtained from official police statements. All persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.