FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A woman was driving in the Tower District when she says she spotted two teenagers with a spray paint can throwing rocks at a crate. 

Inside was Bruce, a two-year-old Chihuahua.

Julianne Audler, Dog Care associate with Valley Animal Center, took Bruce in when a woman brought him in.

“You can see he has little marks here and there from the rocks they threw at him too.” 

Audler says this problem is becoming more and more common. 

“It makes us angry, I think it would make anyone angry just the fact that he had no way of telling them to stop or defend himself,” says Audler. 

According to the Humane Society— more than 10 million animals die from abuse in the U.S. alone every year.

In 2021, only about 2,000 animal abuse cases were made public, a severe issue that they say remains an unpopular topic.

According to the Humane Society- dogs are one of the most common victims of animal cruelty. 

Bruce is now in good spirits but as officials with Valley Animal Center say it’s surprising considering the amount of trauma he went through.

“We’ve had dogs come in with burn marks, we’ve had definitely scratches open wounds, we’ve had cases where we adopt those dogs and come back 2 years later just different from their adoption photo,” says Audler.

Now, Bruce has to take frequent baths— applying Vaseline to areas of his body including his face where he was spray painted. A slow and difficult process to bring him back to normal.

“What did you get out of it would be the biggest question, what did you get out of hurting an innocent dog? Especially a dog,” says Audler.

If you or someone witnesses animal abuse— the Valley Animal Center says you should first contact the police and file a police report. 

Though Bruce still needs a few weeks to be fixed, he will be up for adoption to find a furever home in a few weeks.