Mo Chara Animal Rescue: Neglect and apathy is cruelty too

Catherine O'Brien


Catherine O'Brien


Mo Chara Animal Rescue:  Neglect and apathy is cruelty too

Neglect of Woody's wound caused it to become badly infected

Woody, a young terrier mix, arrived in our care recently with the most horrific facial injury. A member of the public found Woody after he was presumably dumped in local bog land. Upon first sight, he clearly had a large, infected wound covering his right eye and cheek but only when he was under general anaesthetic having the wound cleaned did the extent of his injury become fully apparent. The infection in Woody’s wound was so deep-set that it had destroyed not only his eye but also the soft tissue and muscle surrounding his eye and covering his cheek and the left side of his muzzle. There is also significant damage to the jawbone too. To remove all of the infected and necrotic tissue, the vets had to expose a large part of his skull bone. This wound will take months to heal fully and Woody will require further surgery during the healing process. Woody will be staying with the wonderful team at O’Connor Julian Veterinary for weeks, as his wound needs sterile dressings replaced twice daily and further medication to thwart the infection.
Woody’s wound was not always so serious – in fact, it likely started as a simple bite from another animal. Had the bite been treated promptly, healing would have been quick and uncomplicated and it is possible that Woody’s eye could have been saved. The severity of Woody’s injury was not caused by the bite itself but rather from the neglect of his previous owner who did not seek veterinary care for him. People often think of animal cruelty as occurring when a person deliberately inflicts hurt on an animal, but neglect and apathy can be just as cruel. Neglect/apathy can take many forms – a lack of grooming leading to terrible coat condition and painful matts, failure to seek veterinary care for injuries or illness, failure to seek routine veterinary care including vaccinations, dental maintenance and parasite control, failure to provide suitable food in adequate quantity…
Sadly, this type of cruelty often goes overlooked and unreported by witnesses. We say, “If in doubt, have it checked out” and this applies to both seeking care for your own pets and seeking intervention in cases of neglect.
We are hopeful that Woody will make a full recovery, he is a very sweet, friendly boy and the vets are taking excellent care of him, however, he should never have had to suffer through weeks of debilitating pain while infection rotted away at his face, no living creature deserves that fate. If you recognise Woody or have any inkling where he may have come from, please get in touch – all information will be treated in strictest confidence.
For more information about Woody, fostering or adopting from us at Mo Chara Animal Rescue please email: mocharaanimalrescue, call Nikki on 087-2577182 or Carita on 087-6576022, or find us on Facebook (

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