COVINGTON, TN (WMC-TV) - Animal rescuers in Tipton County say a dog found walking down a road with its ears cut off is one of the worst cases of animal abuse they've ever seen.
In cell phone video taken just after 7-month-old Emma was rescued, you can still hear her crying and begging for attention.
"It was terrible," said Ellen Weedman with Covington Animal Rescue. "I wanted to cry. I wanted to throw up...you could hardly look at her, but you wanted to take care of her."
Animal rescuers found Emma walking up a country road. One ear had been completely cut off, and she was stepping on the other ear, which was only partially cut.
Weedman said the dog was obviously in pain.
"One ear was cut off one with scissors, and the other, they had taken rubber bands and tied them around, and apparently got in a hurry and tried to cut it off," she said.
While Emma is expected to make a full recovery, she is now prone to infections. Animal rescue volunteers say they can't believe anyone would do something like this.
"In all likelihood, they were bleeding her up to make her into pit bait," Weedman said. "People that fight pits like to have bait to get them all riled up."
Now, police are involved, and searching for the people responsible for harming the dog.
Rescuers say it may be several more weeks before little Emma is completely recovered. When she's completely healed, she'll be ready for adoption.
"Animal abuse is a crime, and when you see Emma, it's terrible," Weedman said. "If you can't treat an animal well, how can you treat a person well? I just don't get it."
If you have any information about who is responsible for this animal abuse, call the Covington Police Department and 901-475-1261.
To find out more about the Covington Animal Rescue Effort, click here.