HAWKINS COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL) – After a sheriff’s deputy brought in an injured kitten, Hawkins County authorities are searching for the person who cut off one of its legs and severely injured another.

According to Sandy Behnke, director of the Hawkins County Humane Society, deputy Dustin Winters brought in the animal on Friday after finding it missing the bottom portion of its front left leg.

Deputy Winters brought the kitten to the humane society after finding it missing a leg. The incident is now under investigation. (Photo/Sandy Behnke)

The young male kitten — which shelter staff named Dustin after his rescuer — was suffering from severe infection at his leg joint, fly egg infestation and dehydration alongside several cuts around his right shoulder.

“The one leg was cut completely off,” Behnke said in a Facebook post. “And the other leg the ball of the humerus and part of the shoulder blade are gone.”

After moving Dustin to Mount Carmel Veterinary Hospital, Behnke said work began to clean and stabilize the young cat. While still in critical condition, Behnke was happy to announce that Dustin survived both Friday and Saturday night after fighting a fever of 103 degrees.

Behnke confirmed that the matter is under investigation by the Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office.

“Let’s all thank deputy Dustin Winters and keep little Dustin in your prayers,” Behnke said in another post. “He was drinking from a syringe and never made a whimper, just purred.”

Anyone with information regarding the incident was urged by Behnke to contact the Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office at 423-272-4848.