Owner of dog beaten on video claims it’s merely training

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Is it animal abuse or discipline? That’s the question that’s dividing some Missouri neighbors after video of a dog owner’s tactics went viral.

The neighbors on the top floor of the apartment complex said they saw it happening from their window, a dog getting beaten with a chain.

They say it happened across the parking lot, so they took out their phones, got video and posted it online

“He takes the chain, yanks it and it busts the dog in the face,” said neighbor Tina Federico.

“If you’re abusing a child or a dog I have a problem. It becomes my business. That dog gets hit and beat everyday.”

But she says she’s not the only one who saw this happening. Her daughter says she’s seen it more than once.

“Three mornings ago, when we came out, the dog was tugging on him hard, and as soon as he got up the steps, he picked the dog up with the chain and slammed him into his apartment door by his head. I’m terrified for the dog,” said neighbor Angel Simmons.

John King admits that’s him and his pit bull, Craydo, in the video.

“That’s my baby,” he said.

But he said what he was doing was not animal abuse. He calls it discipline.

“I’m trying to train the dog and get him where he comes to me and stuff, but when he does not listen, I do pop him on his (obscenity),” King said.

When asked why he was beating the dog on its face with a chain, King responded, “I just tapped him with it yesterday.”

Other neighbors say they don’t see that as abuse either.

“More than anything, it gets the dog’s attention. I don’t see any harm in that,” said neighbor Michael Wheelock.

But other neighbors did and reported it to local Animal Control.

Animal Control said it is investigating the case and has been to the apartment complex several times before.