A dog that was lit on fire and set loose near a Utah freeway will be put down because of the severity of her injuries, her owner said.
Dixie, a red tick heeler, suffered second- and third-degree burns to most of her body last week and was in critical condition. In a Facebook post, her owner Trista Heywood said Dixie needs surgery on her eyes, ears and abdomen, and that even after surgery, she would have poor quality of life.
“She would not be able to go outside and do the things a regular dog is supposed to do,” Heywood wrote. She said Dixie would lose her eyesight, and that the animal hospital told her Dixie likely had 12 to 18 months to live, even after the surgeries.
“Our hearts are so broken and we have no words,” Heywood wrote in the post. “... She is suffering and we can’t continue to let her suffer.”
Heywood had set up a GoFundMe page to pay for Dixie’s surgeries. She said in her Facebook post that the money raised — more than $11,000 as of Monday afternoon — would be donated to the animal hospital caring for Dixie and to other resources that help abused animals.
A man allegedly took Dixie from her home last Monday, taking her to a location near 9500 W. Frontage Road just north of Interstate 80 and set her on fire, according to a probable cause statement from Tooele police. The man and his ex-girlfriend were apparently involved a dispute about money and their relationship. Dixie belongs to the ex-girlfriend’s daughter.
The man has been booked into the Tooele County jail for investigation of torture of a companion animal, criminal tresspass, theft and arson. He is being held without bail because police said he poses a “substantial threat” to his ex-girlfriend and her daughter.