Rescue group nurses abused dog back to health
Baby, an American bulldog that two months ago was dragged behind a vehicle and then run over by the driver, is recovering under the watchful eyes of volunteers with One More Dog Rescue.
As a result of the Aug. 2 incident in Olivehurst, the dog suffered a broken left rear leg and extensive damage to her tail. Initially, it appeared Baby’s leg and tail would have to be amputated, reported Rocklin resident Marcy Lopez, founder of the rescue organization.
After five hours of surgery on Sept. 1, however, two veterinarians were able to patch the broken leg with pins, wires and metal plates, but were unable to save her tail.
“It was quite a complicated surgery,” explained Rocklin Ranch Veterinary Hospital owner Dr. Bikram Basrup, who assisted top orthopedic surgeon, Dr. JT Vida of Veterinary Specialty Group-Emergency & Referral Center.
“They very graciously helped out with Baby’s surgery and donated their time,” Lopez said. “We still obviously need to cover the cost of supplies and medicine, tech time, anesthesia and many other things, but we were able to get this done with the help of these amazing people.”
While the plan had been to keep the dog overnight at the hospital, Baby began to show signs of anxiety and stress later that night.
After talking with the vet staff, Lopez decided to pick Baby up from the hospital. When they arrived at the foster family’s home, she continued, Baby “settled right down and went to sleep.”
Within days of the surgery, Baby began standing on her own and was offering her thanks to her caregivers.
“She was licking my face this morning,” Lopez said.
Nearly a month after the surgery, Baby is walking around, Dr. Basrup indicated. He expects she’ll be fully recovered in another three to four weeks.
Lopez had worked in the veterinary field for 19 years, including 18 months as the business manger for Marysville Veterinary Hospital, before she formed the non-profit rescue in June.
While working at the vet hospital, Lopez said, she felt compelled to help animals abandoned by owners who couldn’t afford the surgery or treatments required.
“I started using my income from the hospital to foot the medical bills,” she said.
There were many times when she’d call her husband to ask about temporarily housing a dog. Lopez would plead her case, saying “one more dog isn’t going to make much of a difference. I promise I will find a home for it.”
Eventually, Lopez realized her income was going to cover medical and foster care for “just one more dog.”
At her husband’s suggestion, she decided to apply for non-profit status for “One More Dog Rescue.”
Now Lopez can accept private donations to cover the foster care as well as apply for grants. Her long term goal is to lease a facility where the dogs can live until they find “forever homes.”
“We have placed over 230 dogs since the group began in October of last year and have been invited to become adoption partners with PetCo in Rocklin,” Lopez said.
She’s also searching for individuals willing to foster animals, particularly in an emergency situation.
In Baby’s case, for example, there was no foster home immediately available so Lopez took the injured bulldog home with her. After a few days, she was able to place Baby with a foster family in Loomis.
“Lots of times I get folks that have good intentions, but they end up adopting the dog,” she said, adding they’re no longer willing to foster animals.
Foster homes need to be willing to administer medications, when needed, and transport them to and from adoption events.
The majority of the dogs she rescues come from the Yuba County Animal Control shelter.
While working in Marysville, Lopez explained, she developed a “wonderful working relationship” with the shelter, which is where she found the badly-injured Baby.
While she knew there would be a “whopping vet bill,” Lopez couldn’t say no.
“I try to choose dogs we consider highly adoptable,” she said. There are so many it’s difficult to make a decision. We never pull them early. We leave them and try to give them time at the facility to see if somebody will adopt them.”
Lopez has taken many of the rescued animals to Rocklin Ranch Veterinary Hospital for check-ups and medical care.
“She knows how to deal with problems; how to take care of the dogs,” Dr. Basrup said. “She is doing a very good job with the dogs. Many of the dogs from the shelters would be put to sleep if she didn’t help them.”
When Baby has fully recovered, she will be placed in a forever home, Lopez said.
“We have a couple of people already interested,” she said. “But we’re going to be extremely picky.”
In addition to the interview process, One More Dog Rescue charges a $350 adoption fee, which covers the standard health care services (first set of vaccinations, heartworm testing and credit for spay/neutering).
Lopez describes Baby’s case as one of the hardest she’s ever encountered, but is heartened by the outpouring of support for the dog since the incident was made public.
Yuba County Sheriff’s deputies have arrested Mayne McFee, 42, on suspicion of cruelty to an animal.
Witnesses described seeing a man fitting the description of McFee back his truck over Baby after dragging her behind the vehicle and then driving away.
Donations to help cover Baby’s vet bills (as well as other dogs rescued by One More Dog) can be mailed to Stanford Ranch Veterinary Hospital, 2311 Sunset Blvd., Rocklin, CA 95765.
One More Dog Rescue rehomes dogs of all breeds and sizes. For more information about dogs currently up for adoption, visit onemoredogrescue.com.
Know and Go:
One More Dog Rescue adoption events
When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays
Where: PetCo, 6672 Lonetree Blvd. In Rocklin
Adoption fee: $350, which includes standard health care services (first set of vaccinations, heartworm testing and spay/neuter fees).