TACOMA — A Gig Harbor man accused of duct-taping the mouth of his son's dog to stop the animal's barking has been charged with felony animal cruelty.
The News Tribune reports that 57-year-old Paul G. Sweeney pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Pierce County Superior Court and was released pending trial.
Court records say a passer-by spotted the 2-year-old Doberman pinscher Monday in Sweeney's backyard. The witness told police the animal's muzzle was taped shut and the dog had tape around its front legs.
Court papers say a responding sheriff's deputy found the dog lying on the ground with duct tape "wrapped several times" around its muzzle.
Animal control confiscated the dog. Court documents say the animal recovered well after some water and rest in a cool room.
Paul Sweeney's son, Zak Sweeney, owns the dog. He told the newspaper his father is a good man and the dog was fine.