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Published December 10, 2009, 10:09 AM

ND man charged with injuring pet chinchilla

EDINBURG, N.D. (AP) — A man in the northeastern North Dakota town of Edinburg is accused of abusing a pet chinchilla.

EDINBURG, N.D. (AP) — A man in the northeastern North Dakota town of Edinburg is accused of abusing a pet chinchilla.

Twenty-six-year-old Joseph Marting allegedly kicked a chinchilla's cage during a domestic dispute in late October, injuring the animal's paw and bloodying its nose and mouth.

Chinchillas are small rodents bred for their soft, pale-gray fur. Walsh County Deputy Fred Marquardt says the chinchilla did not require veterinary care.

Marting faces a misdemeanor animal abuse charge and a more serious felony charge of interfering with an emergency call. The criminal complaint says that as his girlfriend tried to call 911, Marting grabbed the phone and threw it against the wall, breaking it in three pieces.

Marting is free on $3,000 bond.

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