The City of South Daytona police are investigating after a woman's Facebook photo of her dog with its muzzle taped shut was shared by thousands on social media and prompted hundreds of calls to the police station.
WESH-TV reported that the photo, posted online by a Katie Brown, has sparked hundreds of phone calls and emails to law enforcement officials nationwide. According to the Daily Mail, the South Daytona Police Department said it has received calls from 44 states, three provinces and Australia.
The photo in question is of a brown dog with its muzzle taped shut with duct tape. In less than 24 hours, the picture has been shared more than 98,000 times on Facebook.
"This is what happens when you dont shut up!!!" the caption, posted on Brown's Facebook page, reads.
Most people have expressed dismay over Brown's supposed treatment of the dog in the comment section of the post, but Brown has defended her actions.
"I cant lie i did it for sixty seconds. It was time out and no more barking [sic]," she posted in the comments section.
In a subsequent post, Brown wrote, "Dont panic everyone it was only for a minute but hasnt barked since [sic]... POINT MADE!!!"
The photo has not been verified, but police told WESH that they are taking the incident very seriously and have not yet located the woman.
"Wow. Love the outpouring of concern for the dog shown in disturbing Facebook posting," the City of South Daytona wrote on its Facebook page. "Thank you. Good people with good hearts want to help. SDPD is currently investigating."
In June, William Leonard Dodson of South Carolina was arrested and charged with animal cruelty after a photo surfaced of his dog — who looks similar to the dog in Brown's photo — with her muzzle tightly taped shut with duct tape.