Phoenix is a 2 to 3-year-old hound/setter mix (best guess). He came to us from a shelter from Richmond County, North Carolina. The owners dropped him off as they were moving. The owner hugged him, laughed and left him there. He was limping; his coat looked poor and had apparently been shot. A local rescuer was there during intake and took a video of him and reached out for help. When the vet saw Phoenix (his prior name was Ripper), he was able to dig out the bullet that had worked its way back to the surface.
There was a lot of nerve damage to his foot, where the bullet had lodged itself, and he probably was in excruciating pain, but Phoenix was friendly the entire time. Puppy Paws Rescue took over responsibility for his vet bills and we planned to bring him here after surgery after neuter and amputation. We reached out to local veterinarians in Maryland and the consensus was that this may be the best approach.
On the day of his neuter and amputation, Phoenix let us know he was not ready to lose his leg. He placed his foot straight for a few steps. We decided that we wanted to give it some time before we made the final decision. Do NOT amputate was written all over his paperwork that day…. and we wrote with a marker on his leg so nobody could be mistaken that today was the day to take off his manhood, but today was not the day to take off his leg,
We started with exercises, bandages and we went through many braces. Then he started to put his foot down a little; and a little more and was able to play with bandages and braces. After several months his foot was almost normal. He did cough a lot, and we found out that while he tested negative at the shelter, he was actually heartworm positive. Our local vet saw him through the treatment.
We were very attached to Phoenix as he gets along with everyone and is such a love and had serious heart palpitations thinking of him leaving - but one day the right family came along and swooped him up. It felt right to let him go home and live his best life with them. He has his own boys now and a dog sister by the name of Reena.
Phoenix touched many hearts and lives and will always have a special place with the PPR family.