Woman charged with animal abuse after video shows her putting dog in car trunk

Owner becomes angry when she can't surrender dog to shelter, Humane Society says

By James Sparvero - Reporter, Erik Sandoval - Reporter

COCOA, Fla. - The Brevard County Sheriff's Office said a woman caught on surveillance video taking her dog in and out of her car trunk was arrested and charged with animal abuse on Thursday.

"If you harm an animal in Brevard County we’re gonna put your butt straight in jail," Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey said in a Facebook post.

Investigators said surveillance video shows Sara Perry parking her car and opening the trunk to take a dog out.

The director at the Humane Society of Brevard County said she wanted to surrender her dog, but the shelter was full.

Executive Director Theresa Clifton said there are currently 42 dogs in 29 dog runs.

"Then she asked if we would euthanize it and we said we do not euthanize animals just because people don't want them and she got angry, so we gave her the information to go to another shelter," Clifton said.

And as Perry starts to leave, she pulls the dog on the leash pretty hard, and she puts the dog back in the trunk and slams it shut.

Clifton said the video is difficult to watch.

"It's horrible. It's just heart-wrenching to see someone care so little for an animal's life," she said.

Clifton said the shelter called 911 and Animal Services was able to find the dog and the owner, thanks to a humane society employee who took a picture of the owner's license plate just before she left.

The Humane Society said none of their employees knew the dog both arrived and left in the car's trunk.

"Had we known that she was doing that, we would have never allowed her to leave our facility."

The Brevard County Sheriff's Office Thursday said during their investigation a veterinarian determine the dog was malnourished.  

"The abuse of this innocent pet makes absolutely no sense and can only be attributed to someone who has zero compassion for animals, and frankly, shouldn’t be allowed to own a plant let alone a pet," Ivey said.

Perry has posted her $2,000 bond, and she was waiting to walk out of the jail on Thursday night.

Stick with News 6 and ClickOrlando.com for developments to this story.

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