Greene County K9 falls ill; authorities suspect foul play


GREENE COUNTY, TN (WJHL) – Greene County Sheriff’s Office K9 Ren, is still recovering after a near death experience last week.

News Channel11’s Micah Smith  found out, authorities suspect foul play.

“Saturday night she was full of life and a normal dog. Woke up Sunday, she actually woke me up… when I let her out to break, it’s like she collapsed on my front porch,” said Ren’s Partner, K9 Officer Mark Crum.

Crum said later, Ren threw up and he rushed her to local veterinarian, Dr. Al Claiborne.

The doctor ran several tests and gave Crum medicine to give to Ren at home.

“Probably 15 to 20 minutes later she just collapsed, real short breath,” said Crum.

Crum said then, Dr. Claiborne recommended Crum take Ren to the University of Tennessee Animal Hospital.

“It was heartbreaking because she’s a part of the family now,” said Crum.

After a 3 night hospital stay, Ren started to get better.

But even as she continues to improve, Crum told News Channel 11’s Micah Smith, he can’t help but wonder why Ren was so sick?

“We may never know for sure, but I do feel like Ren was poisoned.  And from the way the Vet, they feel that way too. But we cannot be 100% sure,” said Greene County Sheriff Pat Hankins.

Hankins said test results showed high levels of toxins in Ren’s body which could be a sign that Ren was intentionally poisoned.

“This being a police dog that’s a felony, just like if you shoot a police dog, it’s just like shooting an officer. That dog is an officer and they will be charged,” said Hankins.

“I do live in town, high traffic area, so I’m always watching Ren but like one of the veterinarians at UT said, their nose is always to the ground,” said Crum.

Crum said  he’s just happy his partner pulled through.

Crum credits her recovery to good doctors, and community support.

“The community support we have received over Ren getting sick has just been tremendous…we’ve had people donate money, one donator came in and actually donated $2,000,” said Hankins.

Hankins said another group started a GoFundMe account for Ren. According to Hankins, Ren’s medical bills could be more than $2,000, but thanks to community donations, her bill’s will be paid in full.

Hankins said he encourages anyone who may have information regarding Ren’s illness,  to contact the sheriff’s office immediately at 423-798-1800.Copyright 2016 WJHL. All rights reserved.

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