LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A 28-year-old Las Vegas man faces charges after a French bulldog named Gigi died before it could be saved at an emergency veterinarian clinic.
Clark County Animal Control officers had taken the dog, along with five puppies, after police found Malcolm Laster running a breeding operation out of an apartment near Nellis Air Force Base. Conditions in the apartment varied, with some pens clean and other areas of the apartment with “severe sanitation” problems. In all, there were 17 dogs in the apartment — the bulldog, five bulldog puppies, three pit bulls and eight pit bull puppies, according to an arrest report.
Laster, who had lied to police about having a breeder’s license during the initial investigation on Nov. 25, faces a charge of willful or malicious torture/maim/kill of the dog.
Police also said Laster had failed to complete a required annual check-in on a pandering conviction, a sex offense. He faces a charge for that, as well.
The apartment at Eagle Trace Apartments, 5370 E. Craig Road, was seized for evidence.
Animal control officers found the female bulldog inside a kennel in the bathroom. The dog’s ribs, backbone and hip bones were visible with an “obvious loss of muscle mass. She was shivering, wet and her gums appeared pale,” according to the arrest report. The dog weighed 13.2 pounds. They normally weigh 20 to 28 pounds.
Most of the adult dogs in the apartment showed signs of starvation.
The French bulldog likely suffocated on its own vomit, according to a vet, but an examination showed that the emaciated dog had eaten part of a towel, and likely would have died from that. One of the puppies also died.
The bulldog had given birth to five puppies at the end of October and had not received veterinary care despite Laster’s statements that it had begun to lose weight. He told police she would heal naturally when she was separated from the pups.
Negligence was determined to be a factor in the dog’s death, and Laster was arrested on Dec. 16.