Manchester man charged with cruelty
By SCOTT BROOKS
Union Leader Correspondent
NASHUA Police identified a Manchester man as the original owner of a dog that was abandoned in the woods and shot in the leg last month.
Officers arrested Homer K. Cutliff, 48, yesterday morning, alleging he drove both of his dogs to a wooded area off Exit 8 on the F.E. Everett Turnpike and left them without food or shelter.
Construction workers on Southwood Drive in Nashua found the injured dog, now known as Jack, with bullet fragments in its elbow Dec. 13. Police, at the time, said the dog was shot intentionally.
Cutliff faces two charges of animal cruelty, both class A misdemeanors. Police have not charged him with shooting Jack, who is believed to be less than a year old.
"That part of the investigation is still ongoing," said Sgt. Thomas MacLeod.
MacLeod said Cutliff owned two chow-retriever dogs named Tyson and Cookie. Cutliff allegedly dumped the dogs in the woods because the tenant policy for his apartment, located on the third floor of 89 Second St., did not allow dogs as pets. The apartment is owned by Red Oak Property Management Inc., which bars dogs from all of its properties unless they are medically necessary, according to the companys owner, Ron Dupont.
MacLeod said he suspects Cutliff knew about the policy when he moved into the apartment.
"He couldnt have them at his residence," MacLeod said. "He let them out of the car and had no intentions of letting them back in the car. He just drove off."
Cookie, who was not injured, was found near the construction site and taken to the humane society. The dog was still there yesterday, MacLeod said.
Tyson, who did not have an ID tag, was taken to a local animal hospital, where the staff took to calling him Jack. Hospital workers collected public donations to pay for Jacks surgery, which saved his wounded leg, according to Kathy Breault, director of operations at the Animal Hospital of Nashua.
More than 150 families volunteered to adopt Jack, she said. After several interviews, the hospital selected Elizabeth and Richard Sheehy of Brentwood as Jacks new owners. The Sheehys work together as quality control inspectors for General Electric in Lynn, Mass., and already own another chow mix.
Breault said she was glad to help the dog find a new home, even before police identified his previous owner.
"Our best interest was the interest of the dog," she said. "Regardless, the dog needed a nice home. No matter what type of home the dog came from, we were looking for the best home, and I think we found that."
Hopefully, she said, Cutliffs arrest will offer the public a lesson about the right and wrong ways to dispose of unwanted dogs.
"There are shelters set up for that, that you can go to. There are so many organizations that they could have (gone) to, to dispose of the dogs," Breault said. "They didnt have to just dump them without food and water. All that suffering could have been prevented."