Hillsborough County Animal Services investigators are looking into how two dogs came to be locked in an apartment bathroom without food or water while the man who leased the apartment left for two weeks.
An adult female poodle was dead but a 5-week-old female boxer was alive when investigators from Animal Services were called Saturday morning.
The boxer puppy, nicknamed Neicy by Animal Services, has an injured leg; an eye condition called "cherry eye"; coccidium, a bacteria infection dogs get when they eat food from a floor with feces; and is thin, said Marti Ryan, spokeswoman for Animal Services.
The dog will survive and be immediately placed into foster care, Ryan said.
Ryan said the man called a friend and asked him to check on the dogs. When the friend went to the apartment at Preserve at Deer Park in Lutz, the leasing agent opened the apartment and found the animals, then called Animal Services and deputies about 10:45 Saturday morning.
Investigators with Animal Services have not been able to reach the 35-year-old man who rented the apartment or the friend summoned to check on the dogs, Ryan said.
"This is certainly not the way to board your pets while on vacation," Ryan said.
The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is also investigating, and Animal Services investigators expect to file charges, Ryan said.