• 55°

Assessment of police K-9 showing no damage occurred months after incident in video

By Natalie Anderson
natalie.anderson@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — A veterinarian assessment of Salisbury Police K-9 Zuul from early March shows there was no obvious musculoskeletal or neurologic damage following “an incident that involved his neck in October.”

The incident is depicted in leaked video footage of a Salisbury Police officer pulling up a K-9 by a leash and over his shoulder, slamming the animal into a car and striking him. A veterinarian assessment obtained by the Post through a public records request occurred months later — March 4 — at Concord Animal Hospital. The officer depicted in the video, whose identity hasn’t been confirmed by the city of Salisbury or police, also was separated from the animal after the video leaked.

The March 4th assessment appears to be the only one conducted since the October incident. In its records request, the Post asked for all assessments and bills of health conducted by a veterinarian for Zuul. Four documents were provided — three with June 2020 dates from Lazy 5 Vets and one from the Concord Parkway Animal Hospital from March.

During the assessment at Concord Parkway Animal Hospital in March, a veterinarian said Zuul was bright and alert, active and unwilling to hold still. Zuul reportedly did not show any “clinical signs” following “an incident that involved his neck in October 2020.” The report stated that there was “no discomfort on the flexion and extension of his neck, or lateral movement to the right and left.” Additionally, both eyes appeared normal, and there was no pain reported with Zuul’s hips and shoulders. The report indicated normal tracking when walking straight and circling to either side. There were no obvious, abnormal lung sounds.

The above image shows the top section of a veterinary checkup for Zuul, a police dog who was involved in an incident in October 2020. Click on the image to view the full, recent assessment for Zuul.

The report gave Zuul a body score of 4.5 out of 9, which falls within the range of an ideal weight. His assessment also showed normal functions of his heart, lungs and eyes.

“I do not see any reason that Zuul should not be trained for police work,” the report concluded.

In March, Zuul was diagnosed with a suspected case of allergic otitis externa, a condition that causes inflammation of the external ear canal. He was prescribed Zymox HC. His caretakers were instructed to apply it to both ears. It was recommended that he receive routine heartworm prevention, home dental care, regular exercise, stimulation away from the usual environment and a healthy diet.

The previous assessment at Lazy 5 Vets on June 27, 2020, indicated it sometimes seemed hard for Zuul to breathe, but that his lungs sounded normal. The vet stated in the report that the dog’s shock collar was “slightly too tight” and contributed to his harsher breathing. The collar was loosened.

The June 27 assessment also shows Zuul had a reaction to one of his vaccines that included swelling of the face, skin hives and vomiting multiple times within a few hours. It was suggested those symptoms be treated with Benadryl if they persisted.

In June, Zuul reportedly weighed 70 pounds, with a body score of 4. In the more recent assessment, Zuul weighed 64 pounds.

Contact reporter Natalie Anderson at 704-797-4246.

Comments

Crime

Lawsuit: Salisbury Police, Rowan Sheriff’s Office tore woman’s shoulder during traffic stop

Business

‘Believe me, they’ll be fresh’: Patterson Farm welcomes strawberry crop

Local

City appoints more members to boards, commissions, with 9 seats left to be filled

News

Virtual play groups the new norm at Smart Start

Local

City meets in closed session to consult with attorney on two ongoing litigation cases

Education

Summit takes art out of the classroom, into the student’s home

Education

Education briefs: Gene Haas Foundation donates $12,500 to RCCC

Business

County’s restaurant grant program dishes out funding to eight local eateries

High School

High school football: Yow out as South head coach

Education

Shoutouts

Local

City moves forward on greenway extension, traffic signal upgrades

Business

State broadband survey could help fund local infrastructure

Education

Happy Roots adds to programming with Bic recycling program

Education

RCCC small business center partners 53 Ideas Pitch Competition

Nation/World

Sheriff: Deputy fatally shot Black man while serving warrant

Nation/World

Garland announces sweeping police probe after Floyd verdict

Crime

District attorney won’t bring charges against former Salisbury officer depicted in K-9 video

Coronavirus

Cooper plans to lift gathering, distancing limits by June 1

Crime

Convicted sex offender charged with having child pornography

Crime

Rowan County woman faces drug crimes for gas station incident

Crime

Blotter: Thousands of dollars in lumber taken from Newsome Road house

Local

Locals react to Chauvin verdict, reflect on work still to do

Business

With remote expansion, outsource provider FCR looks to become an ‘exceptional part’ of Rowan community

Local

City expects $1.5 million surplus in current budget, ability to raise some wages for police, public works