Dog is ‘lucky to be alive’ after surviving three months of starvation in owner’s backyard

'Nino is a skeleton with skin on him. Nino is lucky to be alive today.'

Kenza Bryan
Thursday 03 August 2017 16:58 BST
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Dog left starving with no food for three months survives

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Louise Thomas

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A dog is "lucky to be alive" after he was abandoned by his owner for three months without food.

Nino may have been living off dead animals and his own faeces when he was rescued from the back garden of his home in Memphis, Tennessee.

Owner Kellen Jones, 27, had left him on his own after running out of money to look after him.

"Nino has zero evidence of fat on his body," said Alexis Pugh, director of Memphis Animal Services which rescued the creature. "Nino is a skeleton with skin on him. Nino is lucky to be alive today. When you talk about the worst level of starvation, that’s what were talking about with Nino."

Jones now faces animal cruelty charges, according to the WREG news channel. Under Tennessee’s anti-cruelty provisions, the unreasonable failure to provide necessary food, water, care or shelter for an animal or abandoning it altogether is a Class A misdemeanour.

Ms Pugh said Jones told investigators that he had "been away three months".

She added: "He’d made no arrangements to have the dog cared for.... The owner of Nino was very forthcoming with these details so perhaps he was unaware of his legal obligations.”

Nino, who is now being cared for by specialists, has been eating every two hours.

Staff are now looking to rehome him as soon as possible.

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