Dog shot with paintballs improving under Will County Animal Control care

Authorities seek community’s help in solving dog abuse case

Animal Control Officer Bryan Jones pets Hermione as they hang out at the Will County Animal Control facility on Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023 in Joliet. The English Mastiff was found in an unincorporated area near Beecher with gunshot wounds.

An undernourished dog found in Washington Township who had been shot with paintballs has grown more confident and exuberant while in the custody of Will County Animal Control.

The dog, who has been named Hermione by animal control, was in good spirits on Tuesday while playing with Will County Animal Control Officer Bryan Jones. She also was cheerfully eager for many slices of cheese offered by Will County Animal Control Administrator Anna Payton.

“She’s become more confident since she’s been here,” Payton said.

Payton said she believes people have an affinity for dogs because of their resilience and unconditional love.

“They go through something horrific and bounce back and they still love people,” Payton said.

The circumstances of how Hermione ended up on an 80-acre farm in the Beecher area of Washington Township are not yet known. The township is located in the eastern part of the county and along the border of Indiana.

It’s also still a mystery as to who abused Hermione and why she was shot with paintballs. Payton said Hermione has about eight paintball marks on her body and those marks showed she was moving away at the time she was shot.

“When she was shot, she wasn’t coming at them,” Payton said.

Hermione will remain in the custody of Will County Animal Control until the investigation into her abuse is completed, Payton said. The agency is working with Will County Sheriff’s Office and Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow’s Office on the investigation, she said.

“We need the community’s help in order to solve this case,” Payton said.

Hermione hangs out at the Will County Animal Control facility on Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023 in Joliet. The English Mastiff was found in an unincorporated area near Beecher with gunshot wounds.

As of Thursday, the investigation remains ongoing, said Kathy Hoffmeyer, sheriff’s office spokeswoman. Glasgow’s spokeswoman, Carole Cheney, declined to comment on the case because it is under investigation.

On Sept. 27, a Will County animal control officer responded to a resident call regarding a trapped dog on their property, according to a statement from Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant’s Office.


We need the community’s help in order to solve this case.

—  Anna Payton, Will County Animal Control Administrator

Payton said the property owners of the farm noticed Hermione hanging around the area and were able to have a volunteer safely capture the dog so she could be brought to animal control.

“She’s very sweet. She was obviously very timid at first,” Payton said.

While in the care of animal control, Hermione was given her name after the Harry Potter character as she was in “need of a little magic in her life,” Payton said.

“A name equates value,” she said.

Payton said it’s hard to speculate on where Hermione came from. She said Hermione is possibly a Mastiff breed and evidently has brindle coating.

Hermione weighs between 70 to 72 pounds, and she’s about 4 to 5 years old, based on the condition of her teeth. Hermione also has had multiple litters of puppies.

Fortunately, Hermione showed no sign of parasitic heartworm disease, Payton said. Besides the paintball marks, Hermione also has wounds on her ears.

“She could have gotten stuck on something. She could have gotten attacked by another animal,” Payton said.

Since Hermione’s stay with animal control, she has been bonding with the staff, Payton said.

While the investigation into Hermione’s abuse moves forward, the staff will continue to improve her health.

“For now, we’re going to work on fattening her up and getting her more confidence,” Payton said.

Anyone with information on Hermione’s owners or the suspects who abused her should call Will County Animal Control at 815-462-5633.

Animal Control Officer Bryan Jones brings out Hermione from inside the Will County Animal Control facility on Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023 in Joliet. The English Mastiff was found in an unincorporated area near Beecher with gunshot wounds.