"She didn't even have a buzz," said Farrell Weger, 39, of Ashtabula. "The puppy plays rough. She was just tired."
The incident occurred about 10 p.m. Nov. 27 while he was drinking a pre-mixed screwdriver, he said.
Weger said he only gave the four-month-old puppy "three licks" from the bottle and then he went to bed.
"I had to go to bed because I have to work," he said.
The original article says the puppy was given vodka and Kahlua. A screwdriver is vodka and orange juice. Who gave the puppy the Kahlua?? Also, I've never seen a bottle of "pre-mixed" screwdriver for sale...
While he was sleeping, Weger said his ex-girlfriend, Jennifer Schwab, 36, and their roommate, Tanna J. Howser, 32, posted a photo of the puppy on Facebook with the caption, "lilybug is drunk she pass the (expletive) out on us LOL."
City Solicitor Michael Franklin has charged all three with cruelty to companion animals, a first-degree misdemeanor, according to court records.
As of Monday afternoon, Weger said he had not talked to Franklin or the police about his side of the story.
Franklin was in court Monday afternoon and could not be reached for comment.
Ashtabula Police Chief Robert Stell said he has not heard from Weger.
Police arrived at Weger's home in the 300 block of West 53rd Street at 3:45 p.m. Nov. 28 after receiving calls about photos of an intoxicated dog posted on Facebook.
Schwab told police Weger intentionally gave the puppy alcoholic drinks. Howser then posted the photo on Facebook, according to police reports.
"They threw me under the bus," Weger said. "I wasn't aware of the Facebook post until the next day ... I did not give the puppy enough (alcohol) to hurt her."
Weger said he gave the puppy to Schwab as a gift, but the Facebook incident ended the relationship. He's moved out of the home.
"Really, I think (the posting) was a joke," he said. "I don't think the dog was drunk."
The city's animal control officer, Derrell McCaleb, removed the dog from the home and transported it to the Animal Protective League in Kingsville Township, according to his report.
The past two weeks have been rough for Weger, who says he's getting hate messages.
He believes Schwab's response to critics on Facebook — "It's my dog, I can do what I want" — caused the backlash.
"I have two children, ages 7 and 9, and I have a job," he said. "I have goals for my life and this is a huge setback."
BTW, what he doesn't mention is:
"Weger has an unrelated domestic violence charge pending in Municipal Court. He is scheduled to face the domestic violence charge at 2:15 p.m. Dec. 27 for a pretrial."
I have sympathy with him - to a point. No he didn't kill an animal. No, no animal suffered serious injury. No, the puppy doesn't appear to have been mentally traumatized. So, no, he doesn't need to be tarred and feathered and banished from society for the rest of his life. However, he needs to man up to what he did.
Even if he claims he only gave it "three licks" of alcohol, it was stupid to do - a thoughtless mistake that was worsened by his friend taking and posting the photo. That being said, he needs to "man up" and plead guilty and take his punishment. Just as you would when you were a child and admitted to your parents what you'd done and accept the punishment.
(Star Beacon - December 12, 2016)