Animal Rights Zone

Fighting for animal liberation and an end to speciesism

Horror! Warning, graphic images!

This article first appeared in 2007. Investigations are still underway. 


Neal Rodgers of Vinemont, Alabama had two beagles and after hunting the previous weekend he allowed them to run loose in a rural part of Vinemont located on County Road 1428.
Sunday morning, when he went to feed his dogs, an alarming sight greeted him. His three year old beagle, Anne, showed up bleeding. Initially he thought she may have been hit by a car but it only took a moment to realize the truth, someone had actually skinned her!

“I can’t imagine who would do this. I have had bird dogs for years and never had anything like this happen,” Neal said describing the skinning as the way a hunter would skin a deer.
Anne had her coat removed from the nape of the neck to the base of the tail and down to the nipple line, all of which was done while she was alive.
“It is inhumane and I just can’t imagine anyone doing that to a living creature. I am just flabbergasted. I think whoever did this should be tied up and skinned,” said Janet Rodgers, Neal’s wife.Their second beagle, Buttercup, was also injured but thankfully escaped with just some minor lacerations around the neck and shoulders.

The Rodgers took both of their dogs to Bruce Lee’s veterinary clinic. Lee said in his more then 21 years as a vet, he’s never seen anything more gruesome.
“By far this is the most extreme case [of animal cruelty] I have ever seen,” Lee said. “I was not prepared for what I had to see. This was a totally awful sight.”
Due to the lack of skin available for grafts, Anne had to be euthanized.
“How can this be OK?” Lee said. “The only reason someone would do this is out of extreme torture. The amount of torture involved is incomprehensible. It is a brutal and hideous crime, and I hope I never have to see anything like it again.”
Janet Rodgers asked anyone with information to call the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office at 734-0342.
Sheriff Tyler Roden said the Sheriff’s Office is investigating the case and said more details will be made available when the investigation concludes. Roden said the act is a Class C Felony charge and carries a fine up to $5,000 and up to 10 years in prison.
To say that this story appalls me does not even begin to describe how I feel. Someone who could do something like this to an innocent and defenseless animal is a serious danger!!
More info on this story HERE.

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Comment by Monique on March 18, 2011 at 9:54

I don't think you can judge how much she is suffering just from looking at these pictures.  I do know that even a few inches of skinned flesh can be agonizing.  It's likely that Anne is afraid to move and is standing there simply because it is the least painful option.

Comment by red dog on March 16, 2011 at 18:50

I'm always skeptical when I see over-the-top horror stories posted on the Internet, but it looks like this one is real after all. Maybe Roger questioned its relevance because the deliberate skinning of a beagle is totally uncontroversial ... usually, all anyone can say in a case of outright sadism like this one is "that's terrible" and look around for some group to scapegoat (in this case Satanists). It's a short conversation. Kate, thank you for posting such a well-thought-out reply.


But I'm starting to wonder if I jumped to the wrong conclusion and if this really could have been an accident--who knows what trouble Anne and Buttercup could have gotten into, wandering around a rural area with no supervision? Maybe they somehow got caught in farm equipment or factory equipment? Unless there was video footage or an eyewitness, I don't know if we can ever be sure.

Comment by red dog on March 16, 2011 at 18:45
Regarding the question of whether Anne should have been treated: maybe, but could a dog really recover from such a horrific injury without skin grafts? Could the vets have used some of her remaining skin to grow new skin, even though there wasn't much left? They could have bandaged her and given her painkillers, but I'm not sure what other treatment she could have had. Do you have any links? Humans can donate their skin when they die, but if the vets used canine skin I can't believe they'd take it from a dog who died naturally or accidentally.
Comment by Kate✯GO VEGAN+NOBODY GETS HURT Ⓥ on March 14, 2011 at 23:10

Hello Pat. Thanks for posting this.

I think it's obvious that this report is relevant to what we do here at ARZone.

Personally I don't see any reason to doubt this report's authenticy but thanks for providing substantive information which may reassure the more sceptical amongst us.


The first things that strikes me about this report is what a shame it is that Anne was euthanised. As red dog has pointed out it appears from her demeanour that even after suffering these atrocious injuries she was coping well and didn't seem to be suffering overwhelming agony or to have become severely depressed. It's hard to tell from just two photographs but I would say that unless she became very much worse then I think her chance of recovery would probably have been good. When I say recovery I don't mean that I think she could have grown back her missing fur (without a skin graft - which I guess may have been available by travelling further afield) but instead of growing back fur she may have been able to grow back a layer of thick skin and have been able to live a relatively pain-free normal life. We may take note of the fact that this includes the area of the body that has the least sensitivity in dogs, and being an individual and also a member of a breed who would probably frequently have been running through scrub and/or prickly bushes or whatever and having to learn to ignore minor injuries, I think it's likely that she would also have been conditioned to become less sensitive, particularly in this area of her body. Which may at least partly explain why she seemed to be coping so well with what she had endured.

I expect with adequate pain medication and with regular bathing (in a very weak saline solution) and perhaps with the application of treatments such as "liquid skin" (like professional racing cyclists use) or breathable bandages or something similar like the treatments used to help burn victims to recover and to stop their healing skin from becoming too dry, and to form a barrier from the air and thereby significantly reducing the pain. I think given this kind of support she may very well have been able to make a good recovery. I expect that had she been allowed to live, that in a month ot two her skin could have healed to an extent that may have surprised even the vet. I expect part of the reason why she may not have been given time to heal and supportive treatment may have been because Anne was valued primarily as a "working dog", and as such she may have been considered "replaceable". Replaceability is just part of a speciesist ideology of course. Whereas we realise that everyone is unique, and no-one is replaceable. As abolitionists we recognise that in a sense it would be better if Anne and all other domesticated nonhumans had never been born, so we work towards creating a situation where there are fewer and fewer of them (and hopefully fewer humans too) we also know that once someone has been born they are as morally entitled to continue with their life as anyone is.


Another way of looking at this could be by considering the interests of everyone who may be involved, including whoever may have been able to survive because Anne was not being used to help to hunt them. If we were to consider this from the perspective of, for example a rabbit's or a duck's (or whoever may suffer being hunted's), then by Anne not surviving this may have allowed them and their families to live much longer and more peaceful lives.


We could also try to look at this from a psychological perspective as others on this thread already have. We can ask, What the hell was going on in the mind of whoever could perform such a sickening act of torture? and if it was torture, why didn't it end in her murder? Trying to imagine what torture she may have had to endure is hugely challenging, but do we know for sure that it was torture? Could these injuries possibly have occured as a result of some hideous degloving accident? I wish we could reassure ourselves by thinking her injuries may have happened by some tragic accident (e.g. by degloving due to a collision with a car, or by her trying to escape from a trap etc) - but I think these possible causes can probably be ruled out, especially as there was a second dog who also suffered similar though far less extensive injuries. I guess it's as red dog says and that these injuries were caused intentionally by someone with seriously sadistic tendencies. Anne may have just been an easy target, or she may have been an intended victim possibly in an act of revenge or as a warning to someone or for some other reason that we can never know.

Also as red dog says these incidents do serve as a reminder. I'm sad to say that I've known several friends who have had dog friends who have been murdered by various methods and for various reasons, including being poisoned by someone who raped one of the human inhabitants of a house (the rapist poisoned the dogs so that they couldn't raise the alarm and warn of an intruder). I've also known of someone who's dog friend was stolen, murdered and left on their doorstep as an act of revenge and as a threat. I also know someone, a friend, whose dog friends were poisoned by a neighbour who killed them because he didn't like dogs. We may also know of the notorious puppy killer who recently has been posting videos online of himself torturing puppies to death. He says he kills them because he thinks dogs are dirty and that he intends to kill a hundred more. Sadly these atrocities are not uncommon, but rarely do they result in such graphic images as the ones we see of poor Anne before she was killed.


I referred to a friend whose dog friends who were poisoned by a neighbour. I'm glad to say that in this case there is a partially happy ending. As a result of this harrowing incident my friend and his brother made a decision to try to make up for what had happened to their dog friends. They decided they must do something to help animals in general - so they decided to become vegans.

Comment by red dog on March 11, 2011 at 16:37

It's hard to believe because the dog doesn't seem to be in pain and is still standing. You'd expect an animal in that much pain to collapse or pass out--or at least to try to hide from the photographer.

It's shocking because the other forms of animal abuse are so common we've all become desensitized to them. We know most people continue to harm animals because of ignorance or laziness or habit. If this picture is real, somebody deliberately attacked Anne out of sadism or because they had a grudge against her family. It's a reminder that our nonhuman friends could easily be targeted too ... especially if some asshole on the Internet doesn't like what we say.

Comment by red dog on March 9, 2011 at 11:12
Why would Satanists do something like that? Maybe someone had a personal grudge against the family.
Comment by Pat Dickens on March 9, 2011 at 8:54

Multiple internet sources. I actually went as far as to contact Cullman County police station to confirm if indeed such a case had been opened. Two weeks later, I received a reply in the affirmative.

Absolutely horrid. They suspect some form of Satanism may have been involved. 

Comment by red dog on March 9, 2011 at 8:13
I hope it turns out to be a sick joke and not a true story. Pat, do you know this dog personally or are you reposting something from another Internet source?
Comment by Pat Dickens on March 9, 2011 at 8:07

Because I believe as an animal, this dogs rights have been violated. I believe the more awareness these kinds of abuses get, the greater the chances the the perpetrators will be brought to justice. 

My question to you Roger is why do you feel this does not belong in AR zone?


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