Dogfull writes that the stray Doberman suffered a broken spine, but after surgery and physiotherapy, Spencer is back on his feet and ready for adoption. Everyone loves cute dog videos. Sadly the first photos Jackie O’Sullivan noticed of Spencer the Doberman were not cute, but a distress signal.
“It seemed like he was split in two.” recalls the co-founder of Rescue Dogs Rock NYC (RDRNYC). The footage shows Spencer incredibly hunched over and understandably upset. That was the moment after being brought to an animal shelter in South Carolina on January 4.
The staff at the shelter knew this dog needed resources they didn’t have. Jackie’s phone lit up with messages from hundreds of miles away on the East Coast. When she looked at her messages, she saw two videos of the emaciated brown Doberman, who had probably been raced again. ,,They asked if we could care for him and I said yes.” she explained.
Jackie learned that Spencer had been eating mangled animals on the highway when he was hit by a car. He was then taken to the shelter, where staff quickly realized that this was not the first bad day in one-year-old Spencer’s life.
His ears curled back and his disfigured body told the story Spencer couldn’t. His rescuers speculate if he had escaped a life of mishandling only to be run over on the highway. ,,They took him to our local vet, Paws and Claws in Columbia, South Carolina, and immediately knew his back was broken.” Jackie recalls. ,,He had only one hope. To go to a private clinic. So they sent the x-rays to a neurologist and he left the same day.”
The vets at the VCA Animal Specialty Center in South Carolina had good news for Jackie. Because Spencer was still young and even so felt his legs, he was a good candidate for surgical repair of her torn spine. But there was bad news. His stomach was full of bird bones that threatened to puncture his intestines, and open wounds on her head and legs needed stitches.
Secondary problems could only be solved after Spencer’s spine was stabilized. The surgery had to be done immediately and would cost thousands of dollars. Jackie knew Spencer would be worth it. ,,He looked like he was broken in two. Thankfully he had a strong will to live. He gave kisses and ate” she says: ,,He had everything to live for.”
As Spencer lay on the operating table in South Carolina, photos of him were uploaded to RDRNYC’s Facebook page, and dog lovers felt heartbroken by the images just like Jackie. Spencer received many congratulations and donations, and by the time he was admitted to physical therapy, he had his own Facebook page.
,,We had so many people wanting to know about him that he even broke our website.” Jackie says. In the days after the surgery, Spencer seemed purposeful to get back on his own feet. His doctors were glad to see the dog diligently participating in physical therapy. They were even happier when x-rays showed that the animal’s bones had survived without problems. He did not need abdominal surgery.
Two weeks after his rehabilitation, Spencer was brought to West Hills Animal Hospital and Emergency Center on Long Island, where RDRNYC could better monitor him during daily physical therapy. According to Jackie, the only thing Spencer enjoys more than physical therapy is playing with toys. He bought a lot of toys and brought out the puppy in his own toys.
Over the past few months Spencer has gone from sling walking to independent walking and Jackie says he is getting stronger every day. While he still needs a lot of physical therapy. Spencer is now ready to move on to the next stage of his life. The RDRNYC is now accepting adoption applications. Jackie is excited to see him come to his new home.
,,He is a happy dog who is normally healthy. He’s ready for a great life.”