A Buxton man will spend nine months in jail for abusing a small dog so bad it had to have its eyes removed.

Bruce Simpson, 44, pled guilty Monday in York County Superior Court to a felony charge of aggravated cruelty to animals after he beat his pet, a papillon, which he had adopted from a shelter a year earlier.

Simpson was spotted Jan. 8, 2009, in front of his apartment kicking and slamming the small dog into a wall, authorities said. Police responding to the incident thought the dog was dead.

The dog had already been rescued once from J’aime Kennel in Buxton which was shut down in 2007 after the owners were accused of running a “puppy mill” breeding facility where 250 dogs were kept in crowded and unhealthy conditions.

The dog, who had been named “Pappi” has since been adopted by a couple that already has a papillon. They renamed the rescued pet “Tom” and say he gets along splendidly with his new companion “Dixie” who is very protective of her blind companion.

In addition to his jail sentence, Simpson will spend two years on probation and was ordered to pay $3,000 in restitution to cover the dog’s veterinary bills.

Papillon is French for butterfly and the small spaniels are known for their perky large ears, reminiscent of a butterfly’s wings.

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