11/08/2012 12:52 EST | Updated 01/08/2013 05:12 EST

Injured dog was chemically branded with number, police say

An investigation is underway after an emaciated dog turned up in Aurora, Ont., with a head injury and apparent chemical brands on the sides of its body.

York Regional Police say that a homeowner saw a dog curled up under a tree and called authorities last Sunday.

The responding officer, Const. Netashia McLellan, said it was immediately apparent the dog was in distress.

"He was curled up under a tree, he wasn’t doing very well. I think every breath was a struggle for him," McLellan told reporters on Thursday morning.

The Ontario SPCA was notified and the dog was taken for treatment at an emergency veterinary clinic in Richmond Hill, Ont.

It was subsequently determined that the head injury has left the dog blind in one eye.

The dog also has the number “191” branded on both sides of its body.

While McLellan said the dog has seen a "big improvement" since being taken for treatment, it is still unclear where the animal came from and who is responsible for the branding.

Anyone with information is asked to contact OSPCA investigators.

Click on the video above to see a full report from the CBC's Lucy Lopez.