OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich. — A dog left caged in a park near Coopersville is safe at a local animal shelter after a woman found him inside a portable restroom Monday. 

The dog, temporarily named Jon, was zip-tied to a crate with no access to food or water, said Jen Self-Aulgur, executive director at Harbor Humane Society in Olive Township. 

"Luckily she brought Jon to us," Self-Aulgur said. "It was a roadside park, basically, and if she hadn't...stopped, who knows what would've happened?"

Jon's behavior indicates he's been around people before, said Ashton VanKoevering, program manager and volunteer coordinator. 

"Considering what we found him in, it's awesome to see him like this and see how resilient he is," VanKoevering said.

Jon is undergoing medical and behavioral evaluations at Harbor Humane Society while staff search for his owner. 

"If someone came forward for him, we have a lot of questions," Self-Aulgur said. "We're working closely with animal control, who is investigating (the incident)."

The shelter has fielded several calls from people who believe Jon is theirs, but none have panned out. Many have asked about adopting Jon, who is on a stray hold for the next week. 

"We're all about that second chance at life and love, and Jon will definitely be getting that," Self-Aulgur said. 

Jon's story is a reminder that animal cruelty is still happening in West Michigan, she said. 

"We're very lucky we live in very supportive community," Self-Aulgur said. "But I really think if people took the time to listen and ask what's going on at their local shelters, they'd realize it's in their own backyard."


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