Frank Shamrock, at one time the #1 ranked MMA fighter in the UFC, is being criticized on social media after seemingly admitting to abandoning his mother’s dog at a Dallas airport.
Earlier this month, Shamrock revealed in a Facebook post that he was seeking a new home for his mother’s two dogs “as she can’t care for them anymore.”
While one of the dogs was put in a shelter, Shamrock was still looking for someone to take a second dog, named Zelda, on March 2, when he wrote a plea to fans on Facebook.
“We will be at Dallas Love Field [airport] by 4pm. and flights [sic] at 5pm,” he wrote. “Dog lovers please help Zelda is a great guard dog and she had protected my mom for years.”
The pro fighter added that he had called “every shelter and no kill pet center within 200 miles,” but said had no luck finding Zelda a place to stay. Now, he was due to fly home and needed some help.
Local news station WFAA 8 reports that Shamrock left Zelda at the airport, after apparently no one showed up to take the dog.
Dallas police told the station Shamrock abandoned Zelda in the bed of a truck at the airport, where they believe she remained for the next five days.
Police also told the station that they were investigating Shamrock for animal cruelty, which the former UFC middleweight champion has since disputed.
“They can charge me with whatever,” he told the station. “I will show up. It is what it is. I’m not hiding in any way. It’s an unfortunate and terrible thing. I’m an animal lover and I ran away crying.”
“It’s an old dog,” he added, “no one wants a six-and-a-half, seven-year-old dog.”
Shamrock said he left food and water near Zelda and tied her up in the back of a truck before he flew to California. Police say they found Zelda at the airport days later, after several nights of very cold temperatures.
“Here is what I guarantee,” Shamrock told WFAA. “That dog is alive and safe right now and I couldn’t guarantee that before I tied that dog to the truck and left.”
Zelda is safe and in the custody of Dallas animal control.
Shamrock told WFAA he would return to Dallas to face any charges for abandoning Zelda, but later disputed that he was being investigated for animal abuse on Instagram.
“This is #fakenews,” Shamrock wrote. “Edited to create a story. Very sad. [Reporter] Rebecca Lopez you should be ashamed of yourself, I am not being investigated and only took the call to help bring #awareness to #animalcruelty and #elderabuse.”
But fans were quick to tell Shamrock they’re not buying his excuses on social media.
“Shame on you for leaving that dog in the airport parking lot,” one person commented on Facebook. “Disgusting move. You don’t get on a plane and leave town. The hell were you thinking?”
“Hey Frank. Your [sic] a real piece of — for leaving that dog abandoned. He protected your mother for years and YOU didn’t have the decency to see that it was properly taken care of?” wrote another.
“The fact that the dog was older and had a bad hip, is all the more reason to take care of it, not abandon it like garbage,” someone else commented on Instagram.
[H/T: WFAA 8]