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Dolores dog faces long recovery after severe abuse; suspect awaits trial

Kilo, a golden retriever-poodle mix, suffered head wounds after an attack in December. (Holly Hyde/Courtesy photo)
Dog suffers piercing head wounds, undergoes surgeries

A man faces a trial for animal cruelty after allegedly maiming a Dolores woman’s dog in December, causing severe head injuries attributed to puncture and blunt-force wounds, according to multiple sources.

The dog, named Kilo, faces surgeries and a long recovery, said Holly Michele Hyde, the dog’s owner.

He was stabbed in the head “with something sharp enough to pierce his skull six to eight times, crushing his skull and sinuses,” said Hyde. The golden retriever-poodle mix is now blind in his left eye, has had at least five broken teeth removed, and his nose is broken in multiple places, she said.

The suspect, identified as Neil Thomas Munroe, has been scheduled for a jury trial Sept. 11-12 at 3 p.m. in Montezuma County Court.

Kilo’s head injuries. (Holly Hyde/Courtesy photo)

According to Hyde, she came home Dec. 18 to the grisly sight of blood, fur and feces littering her room and other rooms in the house. As she began taking video, she saw Kilo lying in his crate and bleeding from his head, mouth and nose.

“I don’t think it had been that long since it had happened,” Hyde told The Journal.

Munroe then walked toward the kitchen and said hello, without addressing the blood and Kilo’s injuries. After he said Kilo tried to bit his hand, Hyde said she called law enforcement officers.

Montezuma County Sheriff Steven Nowlin and Deputy Rebecca Lambert arrived at Hyde’s home on Road 27 in Dolores about 4:41 p.m. According to the case report, Nowlin spoke with Hyde and Munroe, and Lambert approached Kilo’s crate and noticed blood covering Kilo’s head and coming out of his mouth.

Lambert’s report added that there was blood on Munroe’s hands and pants and on the walls near the kennel and a wall in the nearby bathroom.

Nowlin reported that Munroe said he hit the dog with his iPhone because Kilo tried to bite his hand when he tried to keep Kilo from mounting a female dog.

Lambert reported that she found no bite marks on Munroe’s hands.

“I asked Neil Munroe if I could see where the dog had bit him, and he held out both of his hands, and I could not observe any bite marks, and only observed a small amount of blood on the inside fingers of his right hand that appeared to be the blood from the dog,” Lambert said in the case report.

Nowlin also reported that Hyde said Munroe had abused Kilo before.

Lambert took Munroe, who reportedly had been staying temporarily with Hyde, to The Bridge Shelter.

Hyde said she and her daughter then took Kilo to the emergency veterinarian in Durango.

Kilo before the attack. He is described as a very sweet and loving dog. (Holly Hyde/Courtesy photo)
Kilo before the attack. He is described as a very sweet and loving dog. (Holly Hyde/Courtesy photo)
Veterinary report details injuries

According to the veterinarian report that Hyde gave to The Journal, Kilo was stabbed six to eight times deep enough to penetrate his skin and muscle and injure his skull.

“Puncture wounds in skin appear to be caused by a sharp, small object (such as a small knife),” the report from Riverview Animal Hospital said.

Hyde said the veterinarian believes these injuries could not have come from a cellphone.

“She believes he was stabbed six to eight times with something sharp enough that broke through because of the X-rays,” Hyde said. “You could see the bone shards going in. It was puncture wounds, he was not hit by an iPhone.”

In a GoFundMe that Hyde started for Kilo’s medical bills, she describes Kilo as a sweet, intelligent dog.

“He is loved by everyone that has come into contact with him. He is a brilliant animal. Full of sweetness. Full of intelligence and intuition. He does trust falls, loves to be held like a baby. Through all of this pain he has endured, he has a smile on his face and is the calmest, kindest and most affectionate wolf,” Hyde said. “No anger, no angst, not even a drop of aggression after nearly having his life taken by someone that was supposed to love and protect him.”

Kilo had a three-hour surgery this week to remove five broken teeth. He still faces a surgery in Albuquerque on his left eye.

“He’ll need a surgery to evaluate that eye to see if there’s anything that can be fixed, and then just keep watching the pressure in it,” Hyde said. “There's quite a bit of damage. So hopefully, he won't have to have that removed.”

Kilo’s GoFundMe is online at https://www.gofundme.com/f/support-kilos-recovery-and-justice-journey.