Rescued Bait Dog Found to Have No Tongue

hoochWhen a stray French Mastiff named Hooch was rescued in California his rescuers had no idea just how badly he had been abused. The rescue organization Marley’s Mutts has seen lots of cases of horrible dog abuse but what they discovered about Hooch shocked them.

Zack Skow of Marley’s Mutts rescued Hooch and brought him to the San Joaquin Vet Hospital. They were trying to figure out what was wrong with Hooch’s jaw and why he was struggling to eat, so they took an x-ray of his mouth. That’s when they made the horrifying discovery, Hooch didn’t have a tongue.

“His mouth didn’t have a tongue,” said Thomas J. Willis of San Joaquin Vet Hospital. “Absolutely no tongue at all, not even a stump.”

In addition to having no tongue, Hooch’s ears were not docked but actually chopped off. The vet and rescuers believe Hooch was used as a bait dog, and his tongue had been pulled and cut from his trachea.

“I can’t imagine the pain he has been through or how he has survived up to this point,” Skow posted on the Marley’s Mutts website. “Dogs need their tongues to perform a variety of essential actions such as eat dog food, drink water and PANT – dogs don’t sweat and rely on their tongues to help regulate temperature.”

With no tongue, the vet is equipping Hooch with an external feeding tube so he can take in nutrients and his life can be saved.

Despite what Hooch has endured and lost, rescuers say he hasn’t lost his heart.

“It tugs at my heart to think that somebody could do this to this poor dog,’ said Andrea Bertolucci, who works at the San Joaquin Vet Hospital. “He’s such a sweetheart and he just wants to be loved.”

To help provide for Hooch’s care you can make a donation by visiting his fundraiser website.


  1. Jackson says on  08/23/2013 at 10:57 am

    Used as a bait dog, but has no scars, isn’t a pitbull, etc? Ooookaaay.

    • Jonsey says on  08/23/2013 at 1:08 pm

      You’re an IDIOT!!!!

    • Anonymous says on  10/12/2013 at 10:36 am

      seems to me like u know too much mate !!!! worrying

    • Pit bull friend says on  02/14/2015 at 9:18 pm

      Bait dogs are not necessarily pitbulls it seems your concern is not about the cruelty this dog suffered but about the supposed use of this dog as a bait dog. I pray the person feels the same suffering he inflicted on this dog for the rest of his life.

  2. Julie says on  08/23/2013 at 11:14 am

    Bait dogs can be any dog. These use them to teach the fighting dogs to kill. So they will use puppies and kittens too. Just to see if the dog they want to fight will actually kill. That is why free pets on craigslist is so dangerous and why you can’t leave your pets outside in the yard unattended. They will steal them

  3. Mon says on  08/23/2013 at 11:26 am

    Glad you can tell that he doesn’t have any scars Jackson, because I can’t really.

    Glad you are just concerned about that.

    Poor Hooch, bless his heart.

  4. Anonymous says on  08/23/2013 at 12:13 pm

    Awww poor baby. He’s so cute. I love his teeth. :-)
    I hope from here on out his life is all about love and gentleness.

    Oh….and I hope the people who harmed him get karma’s foot deeply plunged up their asses.

  5. Cheryl F says on  08/23/2013 at 1:04 pm

    Such evil, it’s incomprehensible.

  6. H Luebner says on  08/23/2013 at 1:31 pm

    It doesn’t matter if he had been used as a bait dog or not. The point of the matter is that SOMEBODY horribly abused this dog. His ears did not naturally grow that way and for anyone to cut the tongue off a brachycephalic dog is sentencing the dog to death!

    I own a French Mastiff and they are the most gentle of dogs. When I take a picture of my dog, his scars from a previous owner that abused him do not show because of his fur.

  7. Dave says on  08/23/2013 at 1:40 pm

    95% probability they offenders were negreos

    • MsPhillyG says on  01/01/2015 at 11:40 pm

      !00% that your a disgusting ignorant slime….so that put you in the same category as the non humans that did that to Hooch. Trash like you is what is wrong with this world….you are blind and ignorant.

  8. Ellen says on  08/23/2013 at 8:25 pm

    If the law for animal abusers were more harsh, life life behind bars…

    • Anonymous says on  08/28/2013 at 8:06 pm

      Life behind bars is too good for that kind of evil. There is no fear in what the punishment could be and they keep doing it – the punishment needs to be severe so that they hopefully would think twice about doing something horrible to an animal or child or person. If you are cruel to an animal – you are cruel to a person / child. Evil is evil and deserve to be treated the same.

  9. Sherry says on  08/29/2013 at 2:53 pm

    Why would they not consider a dog tongue transplant…. jusy like a heart, eye, kidney etc. I would think it is worth a try.

  10. Anonymous says on  12/07/2013 at 6:48 pm

    Such terrible people

  11. Luke Thomas says on  02/12/2014 at 8:57 pm

    Did you know it’s a federal crime now to attend dog fighting. It was signed to law by President Obama as part of the Farm Bill.

  12. DRM says on  02/14/2015 at 9:07 pm

    Once again, the articles posted to this website lack even basic fact checking. And, apparently, don’t have an editor on the clock, either.

    It’s ear CROPPING and tail DOCKING.

    Also, the tongue is not attached to the trachea. Try hyoid apparatus. Why is it (while I already knew it) I can Google it and ADMIN cannot?


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