01/07/2013 11:57 BST | Updated 01/07/2013 12:16 BST

Thomas Huggins 'Strangled, Quartered & Boiled Pit Bull Cross Puppy Named Bandit'

A 25-year-old man is facing animal cruelty charges after he allegedly strangled, hacked up and boiled the family puppy.

Thomas Huggins, of Tampa, Florida, is accused of killing the animal on Thursday morning and then storing the chopped up remains in the freezer, 10 News reports.

The channel says a family member notified police after learning what had happened to the black and white pit bull cross puppy, named Bandit.

Officers say they found Bandit’s ribs cooked in a pot on the stove and the animal’s head in the rubbish bin.

Police spokesman Andrea Davis told WPTV: “The suspect in this case did not see anything wrong with killing the dog.

“Obviously you have to be concerned about someone who’s capable of doing something like this and what else they could be capable of.”

Huggins’s mother told police her son had been behaving strangely since he began smoking marijuana and would claim he was following orders from “the Lord”, the channel adds.

He appeared in court on Saturday and is on jail on a $2,000 bond, WFLA writes.

Of Bandit, neighbour Nickloa Davis told the channel: “It was the cutest little dog.”

She added: "I've been to the food pantry, and the mother, I've seen her at the food pantry. So I know they didn't have to do that for food."

Eating dog is legal in 44 states, The Wall Street Journal says, though Florida’s animal cruelty law states anyone “who intentionally commits an act to any animal which results in the cruel death, or excessive or repeated infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering… is guilty of a felony of the third degree.”