Beloved Old Lab of Prominent Canyon Lake Animal-Rescue Activist Found Drowned in Canyon Lake, Tethered to Cement Block
The 14-year-old beloved yellow lab of a prominent Canyon Lake animal-rescue activist was found drowned near Boat Ramp #7 by a group of kayakers Tuesday.
Sunni Patrice Stalbird, moderator of I see, Dogs That deserve better, in Comal County Facebook page, said the drowning was deliberate. Shylo was discovered floating in Canyon Lake with his feet tied to a metal post that was cemented into a concrete block at the bottom of the lake.
Law enforcement is investigating.
She posted graphic images of Shylo’s body to her personal Facebook page, sparking outrage from residents who are following the drowning on Facebook and NextDoor.
Jakob Willmann, the CCSO crime-prevention technician who also serves as Comal County Crime Stoppers coordinator, said the organization has not officially issued a reward for tips leading to the arrest of a suspect but will still pay out if a tip comes in.
He said Crime Stoppers is waiting for a CCSO detective to file an official report.
Monday, Stalbird posted on Facebook that Shylo was still lost and asked residents to keep an eye out for her dog, who went missing after someone opened the gate to a fence and let all of her animals out.
“He has separation anxiety and a fear of fireworks and thunderstorms, and he’s never been gone this long, we are hoping to get him back home safe, so tomorrow on your way to work/school, if you can keep an eye out for an old yellow lab with an orange reflective collar, please call me,” she said.
In an interview today, Stalbird said through tears she suspects the drowning of her beloved pet was an act of revenge by a convicted felon she has tried to help in the past.
Stray and abused pets are a big issue in Canyon Lake, and she said she routinely reaches out to pet owners “in a non-judgemental way” after receiving tips about abuse via Facebook.
“Animal control does not enforce laws,” Stalbird said. “People anonymously write me all the time.”
“A lot of time people graciously take our help,” and Stalbird arranges to have pets spayed and neutered or treated for ailments like heartworm disease.
When she dove into Canyon Lake Tuesday to recover her dog’s body, Stalbird said she wasn’t expecting to find Shylo’s feet tied to a metal pole.
She said she doesn’t have a lot of faith in CCSO, describing their past efforts to secure prosecution of animal abusers as “lackluster.”
“In this beautiful community, we should not have to worry about our animals being killed because they escaped their yard,” Stalbird said. “Whether this is an act of revenge or just a deranged individual that killed this innocent animal, we need our Sheriff’s Office to hear our voices, act on existing laws and seek out these abusive and dangerous people and get them off the streets and away from animals and people they deem fit to assault.”
“…I want justice for Shylo, and I want our laws to be changed out here, and I want our voice to be heard,” she said. “We’ve got to go after animal cruelty as a felony out here. It’s happening all over the place. They chose my 14-year-old lab, who was the most innocent, sweet angel. His life didn’t have to go that way.”
To contact Crime Stoppers, call 830-620-TIPS. A Venmo account to collect reward money is set up on Stalbird’s personal Facebook page, Sunni Patrice Stalbird.