Caitlyn returns to foster home until court case resolved

Caitlyn watches other dogs playing outside a window last week at the Charleston Animal Society.

Caitlyn, the dog who drew international sympathy after her muzzle was taped shut, went back to her foster home Tuesday after a week of evaluation at the Charleston Animal Society.

She’s doing great, according to the staff.

“She’s a well-adjusted dog, other than a slight fear of men,” Kay Hyman said as Caitlyn napped in her office.

The dog has no fear of women but remembers that it was a man who abused her, Hyman said.

The chocolate Staffordshire bull terrier mix, 15 months old at the time, was found at the end of May in a North Charleston neighborhood with her muzzle bound with black electrical tape. The tape was so tight her tongue and lips were severely injured.

William Leonard Dodson, 41, of Quitman Street in North Charleston was charged with animal cruelty and remains in the Charleston County jail on $50,000 bail. He told a woman he taped the dog’s mouth shut because he was tired of her barking, according to the arrest affidavit.

The dog’s injuries required serious medical care. Treatment included time in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber, cold laser therapy, minor surgery on her lip, antibiotics and intravenous fluids. She lost some of her upper lip and the tip of her tongue.

Medical staff are keeping any eye on a damaged salivary gland and scars on her muzzle but are optimistic she won’t need any more treatment, Hyman said.

People from all over the world have offered to adopt Caitlyn, but she will remain with her foster family until after the cruelty case is resolved, Hyman said.

The charge carries penalties of 180 days to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Reach Dave Munday at 937-5553.