Chain of Hope received a call from a man whose dog had a horrible injury. He said that his dog, named Gordo, would get out of the fence sometimes and would be gone for a day and come back. Then he said that his dog had gotten out of the fence about 5 days before and he hadn’t come back until last Fri. night. Joe told me that when the dog had left, he had his green collar around his neck, per usual. When Gordo returned Fri. night, his green collar was hooked VERY tight around his chest, behind his front legs. It was embedded in his chest and back. Joe was able to get the collar off of him finally and he said the wounds were deep and smelled really bad.
Joe is unemployed and had very little money. He had called up to a vet on Independence Ave. and that vet had quoted him $500 over the phone. Joe did not know what to do, so he cleaned the wounds best he could. He had some Amoxicilin of his own left over and he started giving it to Gordo. He got through the weekend and called Chain of Hope early Monday morning for help. I went right over as soon as Patty called me about it and Joe was waiting out in front of his house. Gordo was loose in the yard, just kind of walking/trotting around. It wasn’t until Joe called him over and I was up close to Gordo that I could see the wounds on him. I moved his hair out of the way and I could see how deep the wound on the top of his back was. He had wounds underneath and it smelled terrible. I told Joe that I would get Gordo over to the vet but that he was going to need surgery, I was sure. This wound was almost all the way around his body. Where it hadn’t broken the skin all the way through, it was really red and irritated.
I took Gordo over to Bannister Veterinary Hospital. Dr. Kennedy examined Gordo and said that yes, he was going to have to have surgery. As they shaved and cleaned the wounds, we could see how deep and nasty they really were. The one wound on the top of his back was particularly deep and circular in shape. I kept looking at all this and I told Dr. Kennedy that I just couldn’t figure out these wounds-it was all so weird. I told her that I had the collar in the car because I had asked Joe if I could have it. She told me to go get it and when I brought it in, she laid it out on the wound and it all fit like a puzzle. The collar had been twisted and was upside down on Gordo when he showed back up at his house after 5 days and the part with the ring where you would attach an ID tag, was what had caused that terrible, circular, deep wound on his back. It all fit perfectly. I don’t know what kind of person would do something like this to Gordo, but they must be a real moron. These wounds were so horrific, I asked Dr. Kennedy if she thought it could really be that bad after 5 days. She said yes-if that collar was on as tight as it appears to have been and he was caught up or tethered in any way, and that ground into him every time he turned, moved, or tried to get loose or away from whatever had him, it sure could make wounds this horrific. I don’t know if some sicko put the collar around his chest and then he eventually got caught up in a fence or something where he was tugging to get loose or something. Who really knows? I always say, I’m glad animals can’t talk because I don’t think my heart could take what they would have to tell us.
While working on stitching up Gordo, Dr. Kennedy asked me if we were going to neuter him. I told her I hadn’t even thought about that because of all the craziness, but that I would call Joe and ask him if it was ok. Well, guess what? Joe said he didn’t want to neuter him. I talked to him about if for awhile and really wasn’t getting anywhere. We finally put Dr. kennedy on the phone to address it, answer his questions, etc. We told him all the benefits of neutering him (like he won’t be wanting to get out of the yard all the time!). We told him that since he was already under anesthesia, the best thing would be to go ahead and do it now. Not to mention that Chain of Hope (thank you supporters!) was paying for it. Joe finally agreed, hence the picture of Dr. Kennedy going for the balls!
Dr. Kennedy got Gordo all fixed up, they put an e-collar on him for him to wake up to, and kept him that night to sleep off the drugs. Gordo’s owner called me that evening to see how he was doing. He seemed very concerned about him.
I picked up Gordo the next morning from the vet and took him home. I explained all of the meds to Joe and how to care for the wounds. I gave him a large wire kennel to use to keep Gordo in the house. I gave him my cell # in case anything happened or became an emergency. Joe gave Chain of Hope a donation towards Gordo’s medical care and he expressed over and over again how much he appreciated our help. He apologized about not wanting to neuter him and the long conversation that entailed, but he said it all makes sense and that he wanted whatever was good for Gordo. I told him that definitely neutering was a good, good thing and that he had made the right decision. I told him that I realized he had had a lot on his plate with everything that had happened and it had to be a relatively quick decision since Gordo was under anesthesia. I totally understood his confusion and I didn’t berate him for it, we just talked with him and explained things. It’s usually about education, education, education! We will continue to visit Gordo and watch him as he continues to recover.
A neighbor had given Chain of Hope’s number to Joe. We have a lot of community awareness, which we build by getting out on the streets and talking with people, getting introduced to neighbors and relatives. People share our number because they know that we will help people with their pets, offer education, resources (such as dog houses, food, hay, etc.) and spay/neuter services. Although there is a lot of cruelty and neglect out there, there are good people needing help. We don’t judge people, we help them. I’ve seen the poorest people take excellent care of their animals. I’ve seen and met people that will feed their dog before they feed themselves. The economy is so bad, we want people to know that we are here to help their animals.
Thank you for your support, for keeping us out there, and for sending good thoughts, prayers and good wishes our way.