Dog Owner Owner Charged With Cruelty Says He Was Trying To Save Dog's Life

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A dog owner is defending himself against allegations of animal cruelty.

Tony Rawson is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday morning on a charge of animal cruelty.

Humane agents say he injured he dog and it had to be euthanized.

"I never hurt an animal in my life and I wouldn't,"  said Rawson.

Rawson is adamant about his love of animals.  He speaks fondly of Eunice, the dog he adopted from the Humane Society.

"It was a big surprise to me, it was a huge surprise,"  Rawson said.

He didn't understand when six officers showed up to arrest him on animal cruelty charges.

"She was acting really weird the night before the humane society came and got her,"  said Rawson.

Rawson and his friend Bill Braskett didn't know what to make of her behavior.

"She was just real real lethargic, he got her to eat, she just threw it right back up,"  said Braskett.

"She had two seizures,"  said Rawson.

Rawson is a former firefighter and EMT.  He tried CPR when she stopped breathing.

"I held her to my chest and pushing on her, trying to get her to help breathe,"  said Rawson.

He couldn't afford an emergency veternarian visit so he finally called the Humane Society. 

They say they had to put her down because she had a broken spine. 

That's when Rawson got charged with animal cruelty. 

He thinks it may have been the CPR.

"A dog's anatomy is a lot different than a human's so I don't know if I was doing it wrong or I was doing it right,"  said Rawson.

Braskett says Eunice loved Rawson and always curled up with him.  He thinks Rawson shouldn't be charged.

"I don't think he should be because I never seen him do anything,"  said Braskett.

"I'm pretty much not going to accept anything except a not guilty or a dismissal in the case,"  said Rawson.

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