Near-death pup gets Christmas ‘miracle’
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) – Bullock County Humane Society Shelter Director Jennifer Gallagher faced two options: Euthanize the gravely injured puppy that was dragged to her doorstep, or send it to Montgomery and pray for a miracle.
She decided to pray.
Gallagher brought the year-old Rottweiler mix to Taylor Crossing Animal Hospital. There, smitten technicians named the dog Hope.
When she was found, Hope was only given a 10 percent chance of survival. Gallagher, captured surveillance footage of a man dragging Hope’s lifeless body out of the bed of a pickup truck, dragging her across the gravel and dumping her in front of the shelter before driving off.
She didn’t move for nearly three hours before Gallagher arrived to open the shelter later that day and found her. Even then Hope did not respond to touch or sound due to the extent of her injuries.
“Usually when dogs get into scrapes with each other there are about five or so bite wounds,” said Gallagher. “She had about 100 puncture wounds. The skins on her legs was almost completely torn off revealing muscle and bone. It appears her wounds had not been treated for several days, which caused the bone to become infected.”
Hope also had severe wounds to her neck, face and mouth.
Jessica Loch, an associate veterinarian at Taylor Crossing who treated Hope, believes her injuries were caused from multiple dog fights.
Gallagher brought her to Taylor Crossing where she transferred custody of Hope to Troy Animal Rescue Project since she was unable to afford any of Hope’s veterinary bills. Troy Animal Rescue Project is a volunteer rescue organization that serves Central Alabama in rescuing animals from abusive environments or that run the risk of euthanasia at local shelters, gives them veterinary care, sometimes at high cost and places them into foster homes.
After surgery, nearly $10,000 worth of medical care, blood and plasma transfusions and antibiotics, Hope was put under constant supervision to recover in the animal hospital’s ICU ward for five weeks. On Dec. 21, Hope was sent to a foster home to await her “furever home.” Dozens of staff, friends and supporters waved goodbye and celebrated her recovery with balloons, posters, hugs and specially-made dog cakes from The Barkery.
“She didn’t fight the other dogs who attacked her, but she fought for her life,” Gallagher said.
“Hope’s condition was extraordinary, but it is something we see and hear about almost on a daily basis,” Gallagher said. “Dogs are found dead on the side of dirt roads or dumped in the river. Hope just happened to be dropped off with us.”
It was almost impossible to tell that Hope, who devoured her bone-shaped cake with pink icing and begged for belly rubs, was only a short time before immobile, suffering from septic bite wounds and a high fever. A bright red cast on her front leg was the only evidence of her tragic story.
Loch was amazed at Hope’s recovery. She tried an unconventional approach of using honey bandage changes three times a day on the severe leg wound for cell healing and growth.
“Twenty-four hours after she was brought in, we saw a glimmer of life,” Loch said. “She was drinking water from a syringe and then two days later she was licking. She has come so far that you would really not know that this dog who is running and playing and eating dog case was at that state five weeks ago.”
“Today we proved love conquers all.”
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