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A Waverly resident was arrested Monday night after chaining a pit bull outside for so long the collar became embedded in the dog’s neck.

Malone-based New York State Police charged Shawna A. Bero, 29, with aggravated cruelty to animals, a felony. The dog belongs to her boyfriend, Mackenzie D. Durant, 30, who has been serving time in the Franklin County Jail since November, according to Troop B Public Information Officer Trooper Jennifer Fleishmann.

While the dog, named Mary J., was in Ms. Bero’s care, she was being fed but remained chained up outside, Ms. Fleishmann said. Over time ice began to build up between the links of the collar area of her chain, causing it to tighten and essentially embed itself into the dog’s skin.

On Jan. 1, Ms. Bero noticed that the four-year-old pit bull had a swollen head and was acting ill, according to Ms. Fleishmann. She called a family member of Durant’s in Lake Placid for help. Susan L. Durant then immediately drove to Waverly to get the dog and brought her to the Lake Placid Animal Hospital to get checked out.

It was there a veterinarian discovered the chain had become embedded approximately five centimeters into Mary J’s neck, Ms. Fleishmann said, causing the animal hospital to report “obvious” animal cruelty to the Ray Brook trooper station.

The case was moved to the Malone station when details of Ms. Bero’s actions and location were discovered.

The vet in Lake Placid concluded the collar had been embedded for a lengthy period of time and was the reason the dog’s head had begun to swell, Fleishmann said.

Surgery to remove the chain was successful, and the dog is now doing well and staying with a Durant family member, according to an investigator at the Malone state police barracks.

Ms. Bero had also been caring for a Siberian husky at the Waverly residence, but that dog was found in good condition, Ms. Fleishmann said. Due to the circumstances with the pit bull, the husky was also seized and taken to the Malone animal shelter.

Ms. Fleishmann said Ms. Bero was cooperative with the animal abuse investigation and was issued an appearance ticket for Waverly Town Court.

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