Justice for Abandoned Husky Who 'Melted' into Floorboards

It's nearly inconceivable that anyone would take a lengthy trip leaving their dog unattended at home, but that's exactly what an ex-pro baseball player did. He then asked his neighbor's stepson to clear up the remains, including maggots and bodily fluids, and to not get him into trouble. The husky, named Eagle, was skin and bone and appeared to have melted into the floor while laying as if waiting for Abner to return. We cannot bring Eagle back or undo his suffering, but we can ensure his negligent guardian is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Act now to get justice for Eagle.

Shawn Abner, who was Major League Baseball's top draft pick in 1984, may not be remembered for his lackluster outfielder performance from 1987 — 1992, but he will most certainly go down in infamy for the starvation death of his 14-year-old dog, Eagle.

On August 7, 2019, Abner contacted his neighbor in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania from Topeka, Kansas where he was visiting his girlfriend. He asked for the neighbor's son check on Eagle. The neighbor's son was met with a foul odor, but entered Abner's apartment anyway. He found Eagle lying just inside the door fully decomposing. The young man then spoke with Abner, who asked him to remove Eagle and to bury him. Other neighbors would remark that they hadn't seen Eagle, possibly since May or June when he was spotted limping and appearing to be skinny.

While Abner posted a tender RIP for Eagle, his disgusted neighbor contacted the Hampden Township Police Department.

Officer Matthew Grunden, first responder, had to be equipped with a mask and oxygen to enter the apartment. He then filed a criminal affidavit charging Abner with felony aggravated cruelty to animals, cruelty to animals, and neglect of animals. In his report Officer Grunden described the "overbearing” foul odor of Eagle's decaying body and remarked that it appeared to be melting into the floor. The floor was feces laden and was also buckling from urine-saturation.

Humane Officer Patrick Noll estimated that Eagle may have been dead for as long as a month, an estimate that was confirmed when Pennsylvania State Animal Diagnostic Laboratory performed a necropsy concluding that Eagle was partially mummified.

Cumberland County issued an arrest warrant for Shawn Abner and he was arrested by Topeka, Kansas police officers and detained pending his extradition to Pennsylvania for arraignment in Cumberland County.

At the time of this alert, Abner has not yet been extradited to Pennsylvania, but his extradition is in the works. If convicted, Abner faces up to seven years in prison and a possible $15,000 fine for aggravated animal cruelty and additional fines for misdemeanor charges of cruelty to animals and neglect of an animal.

No one should escape the gravest of penalties for such horrendous suffering that slowly and painfully sucks the life out of any sentient creature.

What YOU Can Do — TODAY:



We implore you to join us in impressing on Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, District Attorney Skip Ebert that Shawn Abner must not be allowed a plea bargain and that DA Ebert impress upon the judge who will hear the case that Abner's crime deserves the maximum sentence that his charges carry.

Please add your signature to In Defense of Animals' letter to DA Skip Ebert asking him to set Shawn Abner as an example that Cumberland County has a zero tolerance for aggravated animal cruelty and to not cave to a plea bargain or a first offense deal. Your voice combined with the voices of the thousands of caring animal protectionists who join you will be heard.


Submit the letter below to deliver your comments to:
  • District Attorney Skip Ebert


IDA - Facebook IDA - Twitter


No Plea Deal & Maximum Sentencing for Shawn Abner

Dear [Decision Maker],

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]


*Required fields

If you take action and have not already registered, you will receive periodic updates and communications from In Defense of Animals.