Longtime Miami-Dade Animal Services vet tech arrested, charged with beating puppy – NBC 6 South Florida

A longtime Miami-Dade animal services worker has been arrested on animal cruelty charges after he watched his co-worker brutally beat his puppy, authorities said.

Rowdell Perez, 54, was arrested Tuesday on one count of animal cruelty with intent to injure, according to an arrest report.

According to the report, Perez is a 10-year county employee who performs the medical evaluations required before placing dogs on the adoption floor as a veterinary technician at Miami-Dade Animal Services.

Miami-Dade Corrections

Rodel Perez

The alleged incident occurred on Jan. 12, after Perez and a co-worker prepared their workplace for the arrival of a new puppy.

A co-worker’s 3-month-old male Great Dane mix was able to poop on his dog.

But when the puppy began to growl at Perez, he grabbed him by the throat and began choking him before throwing him onto the metal examination table, the report said.

Perez then punched the puppy four times in the muzzle area, the report said.

Her colleague was very upset and immediately reported the matter to her supervisor.

The puppy was examined and found to have serious injuries, including broken teeth and broken eyes, the report said.

Perez later denied hitting the puppy when questioned by investigators, the report said.

Perez was booked into a Miami-Dade jail. Attorney information not available.

In a statement Wednesday, the Miami-Dade Department of Animal Services said Perez had been fired.

“The welfare of animals in the care of the Miami-Dade County Animal Services Department (ASD) is our top priority. The department evaluates all allegations of animal abuse promptly and seriously and has a zero tolerance policy for any such behavior,” the statement read. “After our staff learned of the incident, they immediately contacted authorities and placed the employee on leave. The puppy is in the care of a rescue partner and is recovering until it is available for adoption. As this is an open investigation, the department cannot comment on the details of this case.”

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