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Lorie Chortyk, with the B.C. SPCA, says constables were called to a home in Duncan on Feb. 16, after receiving reports of a dog in distress. 

Chortyk said when they arrived at the property, they found a mixed-breed dog chained up with a leash that was only a couple of inches long, making it impossible for him to move. 

When constables got closer to the dog, they noticed a "powerful stench" coming from him. 

"They realized not only was the dog so emaciated, but his collar was so embedded into his neck that there was this massive, massive infection," Chortyk says. 

The dog was taken into care that day and received round-the-clock veterinarian care, but died two days later, Chortyk said. 

"This is one of those cases that just shocks and horrifies even our special constables who see so much suffering," she said. "It's just absolutely heartbreaking. It's hard to understand why or how anyone could let an animal suffer like that."

Possible $10,000 fine
The B.C. SPCA said Wednesday that Anderson Joe and Melissa Tooshley of Duncan have been charged with animal cruelty in the case. If convicted, they face a maximum penalty of up to five years in prison, a $10,000 fine and a potential lifetime ban on owning animals.

A court date has not yet been set.