For 10-year-old Denver, Colorado native Estrella, the days are not going to get any easier from here on out. After neighbors reported her to animal control because of the sickly, emaciated condition she was in, a controversial decision was made to return her back to the very family that was abusing her. According to sources familiar with the case who spoke exclusively to me on condition of anonymity, Denver Animal Protection Service’s(DAPS) was not able to definitively prove that she was actually being abused after “intensive interviews.”
With the evidence in plain site, neighbors who reported Estrella and her owners to DAPS, were shocked when she was not removed from her home. In fact, DAPS investigator Daniel Ettinger agrees that Estrella is more than likely being purposely starved. He described her condition saying,
“One being extremely emaciated, nine being overly obese. And you look at this dog, without getting hands on it, probably 1.5 out of nine.”
Ettinger stated that in Denver County, animal laws tend to favor reeducating owners about proper pet care, rather than seizing pets. It is a measure designed to keep the population of an already stressed city-operated shelter system.
“We will do what’s right in this situation and we have to allow the dog owner to do what’s right and so far they are.”
DAPS representatives say they are closely monitoring the situation, and will step in to intercede on behalf Estrella if her owners continue to care poorly for her.