An Ottawa woman faces two charges of animal cruelty after a dog living in the residence where she was staying was stabbed to death in what the shelter calls an “unusual” case.

The Ottawa Humane Society launched an investig­ation after the owner of a five-year-old poodle brought its body to the shelter on Jan. 19.

A necropsy later confirmed the dog, named Morgan, died as a result of a knife wound to its shoulder-blade area.

“The dog obviously suffered before it died,” said OHS Insp. Miriam Smith. “It’s incredibly shocking to see an animal treated this way.”

Following an investig­ation and interviews with the occupants of the home, OHS inspectors charged a woman on Jan. 28 with two counts of animal cruelty under the Criminal Code of Canada, including unlawfully killing an animal and causing an animal unnecessary pain and suffering.

The suspect faces a maximum penalty of a $10,000 fine or five years in prison.

Abir Hamade, 24, appears in court on March 24.

Although the OHS investigates about a thousand animal cruelty cases a year, laying 12 criminal charges in 2008, there are few cases as extreme as this, said OHS spokeswoman Tara Jackson.

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