Pasco County man 'violently' swung dog by its leash, deputies say

A Pasco County man was seen swinging a dog by its leash and into a picnic table, deputies said, and was later arrested.

Deputies said they arrested 23-year-old Zakery Zarifis on an animal cruelty charge. He was seen in surveillance video sitting on a picnic table on the west side of his property, located in the 16000 block of U.S. Highway 19 in Hudson. The video showed a 10-pound dog, named Cujo, being yanked off the ground by its leash, knocking its head into the table in the process.

Officials also said Zarifis was walking on the nearby street and "violently" pulled the dog leash multiple times and Cujo "yelped in pain."

Zarifis was arrested on Sunday.

Deputies said the dog is in good condition and with the suspect's girlfriend, who owns Cujo.