Durham County deputy adopts dog seized during animal cruelty investigation

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Deputy Dakota Beck and Marty (WTVD)

Seven months after Durham County authorities rescued an Alaskan Malamute named "Marty" during an animal cruelty investigation, the dog has now found his forever home with one of his rescuers - a Durham County Sheriff's deputy.

"He put his paws around my waist and gave me a hug," Deputy Dakota Beck said Marty did when she found him in deplorable conditions.

Last July, Deputy Beck was called to a home on Sybil Drive in Durham where she found Marty, Dimple, and about two dozen other dogs standing in urine and feces. They were full of matts, dehydrated and emaciated. At least three dogs did not survive.

"He put his paws around my waist and gave me a hug," Deputy Beck said Marty did she found him in deplorable conditions last July.

Investigators later charged their owner, Sandra Lehto, with 28 counts of animal cruelty.

The Southwest Michigan Husky Club, an animal rescue group, based in Athens, Michigan, took in Marty, Dimple and another dog and nursed them back to health.

As soon as Marty was ready for adoption, Deputy Beck jumped at the opportunity.

On Thursday, the club made a 12-hour trip back to Durham where Marty was reunited with Deputy Beck, so he could become the newest member of her family.

"I like his temperament," she said. "I like that he has been through absolutely the worst conditions known to animals but he still wants to love and he still wants to meet everybody. It's inspiring to me that a dog can go through what he went through and still just be so positive and loving."

Dimple is also now up for adoption. For info on how to adopt, click here.

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