Local Humane Society saves three-legged dog

Published 6:40 pm Friday, February 6, 2015

A shopper at WalMart recently noticed a little black dog limping around the parking lot, and fearing for its life, took it to the Bainbridge-Decatur County Humane Society.

It was soon determined the dog had a broken leg and shelter workers at first thought it might have been hit by a car.

When the dog was checked out by a veterinarian, it was determined the injury had come from a gunshot that had shattered the leg. The dog also tested positive for heartworm.

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It was decision time for the shelter staff — to save or not to save.

After assessing the dog’s pleasing personality and observing that it appeared to be housebroken, the group decided to have surgery performed to amputate the injured leg. “The dog was already hopping well without it,” observed Beth Eck, shelter director, who said, “It didn’t slow her down a bit.”

Another consideration in making the decision is the adoptability of the animal. Shelter workers decided it would not impede this dog’s chances for adoption, and may, in fact, enhance them.

The decision became a no-brainer after a generous donor from Thomasville offered to pay for the surgery. That was a little over a week ago, and now the dog, who has been named “Cookie” by shelter workers, is recovering well. She is calm, friendly and content. She ably makes her way around the shelter – inside and out with little difficulty.

Eck said the decisions on whether or not to save a sick or injured dog sometimes come down to leading with your heart instead of your head.

Ashley White agreed, saying, “The heartworm diagnosis in this case was a negative; but she’s just so sweet. The fact that someone had been so cruel to her just convinced us she deserved better.”

Cookie is to get her stitches out this week and will be started on slow-kill heartworm medication once her recovery is deemed sufficient.

Slow-kill heartworm medication is said to be much easier on a dog than the fast-kill dosage. It takes one dose a month until the test comes back negative. Anyone adopting an animal from the shelter that has been started on slow-kill meds must agree to continue treatment. “It’s very manageable,” said White, who continued, “People don’t realize how treatable it is,” then added, “Of course, the best way is to use consistent, monthly prevention in the first place.”

The Bainbridge-Decatur Humane Society always welcomes donations, financial as well as food, toys, and other supplies. Anyone wishing to make a financial donation to an emergency medical treatment fund may designate it to be used for that purpose.

That is the type of funding that saves a dog like Cookie.

Cookie is thought to be between five and seven years of age. She is a small dog and completely housebroken, indicating that at one time someone cared for her.

She will soon be ready to find a new, loving home where she can receive the loving care she deserves.

You can check her progress on the Humane Society Facebook page, or on the shelter website.