The saying “it’s a dog’s life” has real meaning for five homeless pooches taken in recently by the La Plata County Humane Society.
But life is looking better for River, Rusty, Rocky, Fawn and Lieutenant Dan. They need four surgeries and two wheelchairs total.
Humane society officials, who are nursing them back to health, need a little more than $5,000 for surgeries, care and rehabilitation.
They are turning to the public.
Take River, a 1-year-old female shepherd mix, who was found by humane society volunteers returning from Kayenta, Arizona, with strays.
“She was running along the highway near Shiprock,” said Chris Nelson, director of animal services at the humane society. “We couldn’t leave her there.”
River has received a femoral head osteotomy, a fancy way of saying the removal of the head and neck of a leg bone to alleviate pain. She also has had surgery and has been adopted by a Durango resident.
Rusty fell out of the rear of a truck. The driver behind the truck picked up the puppy and flagged the driver, only to learn the owner didn’t want the dog back.
Fawn was noticed limping by a woman driving through Kayenta. The woman picked up the dog and left her at the humane society.
Rocky was transferred to Durango by another humane society.
Lieutenant Dan was dragging himself along a road near Ignacio when found. He had severe sores on the tops of his paws and he was covered with feces and urine. He has a dislocated vertebra on the lower spine, and he will receive a K9 Cart, a type of wheelchair, to help his back legs.
Veterinarian Dennis O’Brien has been visiting the humane society to apply chiropractic techniques to the dogs. Lieutenant Dan may also get some acupuncture and massages.