JANESVILLE, Wis. - A humane society in Rock County is asking if anyone recognizes a puppy that was reportedly thrown in the river.
The Humane Society of Southern Wisconsin said a man dropped off a small black male dog Wednesday afternoon after someone tossed it in the Rock River.
The man said he was fishing when he saw a young person walk the dog up to the Veterans Memorial Bridge, unhook its leash and throw it in the water. The dog swam to the side of the river.
"He brought the dog in here, still wet, and we took it in as we do over 3,000 strays every year," said Brett Frazier, the humane society's executive director.
A vet looked over the puppy, which seems to not have any physical or emotional trauma. It did not have a microchip or tags and was only wearing a flea collar.
The humane society estimates the puppy is about 10 months old. Workers posted a video of the dog on the humane society's Facebook page in hopes someone would recognize it.
"Our hope is always that we can find the family of a lost dog," Frazier said.
In this case, Frazier suspects someone might have stolen the dog and then decided to toss it into the river. He said he let police know about the situation but did not file a formal report.
"Of course, if someone did this to their own pet, that's something we would want the police to deal with," Frazier said. "We're hoping a family comes in and can tell us hey, what happened. When was the dog taken? And help police figure out what happened."
Frazier said there is a four-day mandatory hold period for strays before the humane society can legally take ownership of them. After that, the humane society evaluates the animals for adoptability. In the case of the little black dog, Frazier said, if no one claims him, the pup should be available for adoption around the beginning of next week.
"We have hundreds of people who have expressed an interest in adopting this dog," Frazier said with a laugh. "And one way or another, we'll find this dog a really safe and loving home."