DES MOINES, Iowa (WHO) – A Des Moines man is facing animal neglect charges for allegedly starving and mistreating his two young dogs.
Court documents reveal 32-year-old Nathaniel Bifford is charged with two counts of animal neglect with serious injury or death. He was booked into the Polk County Jail Thursday morning but has bonded out. His next court appearance has not been scheduled yet.
Des Moines Animal Control received a tip about the dogs, Kyda and Zeus, and removed them from a southeast side Des Moines apartment earlier this week after finding them “extremely malnourished.”
The Animal Rescue League of Iowa is caring for the dogs and said they were emaciated and their fur was stained from lying in their own waste. The dogs were suffering from starvation and dehydration, and one of them had been found lying on a balcony in the sun without water. That was on a day when then the heat index was over 100°.
The complaint says if the dogs had not been removed, they would have likely died.
After being evaluated by a veterinarian, both dogs showed indicators of severe neglect and inhumane treatment.
The ARL says the dogs are on a special program to make sure they safely re-gain their weight and health and despite the previous mistreatment they experienced were “incredibly sweet” and seeking comfort and love from those caring for them.