After Years Of Being Locked Up Outside, Senior Dog Gnaws Off Her Own Leg in Shocking Case Of Animal Cruelty

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Warning: This story contains graphic images that may be disturbing for some viewers.

Rescuers from the Susquehanna SPCA, an animal rescue in upstate New York, don’t usually share the stories of individual dogs and cats who come through their doors, but found themselves compelled to make an exception in the case of a senior dog recently rescued from a horrible case of abuse.

“We do not often share with the general public the behind the scenes work that we do but what we experienced yesterday must be shared,” rescuers wrote on Facebook, warning readers that the images and content to follow is very disturbing.

A senior dog had been found chained up outside with one of her front legs “blown off, according to a witness, who recognized that the dog needed immediate help. “The good Samaritan who called this situation in was outraged and scared for Zoe,” rescuers posted on Facebook. “They did exactly the right thing by calling our line and we want to praise them for their heroic act.”

Rescuers immediately swooped in to save the poor creature, who was rushed to the animal hospital for emergency care. But after blood tests, X-rays and subsequent testing, veterinarians sadly discovered the dog’s missing limb wasn’t even her biggest worry. The 9-year-old dog also suffered from a heart murmur, anemia, a possible tumor and bone cancer so advanced she may have chewed off her own leg.

Doctors reached this grim conclusion after finding bones inside the 9-year-old dog’s stomach. “It’s very possible that she was in so much pain from the bone cancer or the cancer in her arm, that she gnawed it off to get rid of the pain,” one of the SPCA rescuers, Stacie Haynes, told WBNG.

Rescuers were also surprised by the dog’s cheerful disposition, considering the extent of her wounds and everything else she’s been through. “A dog in this condition, you would think she would be growling and snarling, but she’s not,” Haynes continued. “She’s happy to be pet, she gets up, she wants to walk.”

Police have already arrested Zoe’s former owner, who was charged with torturing and injuring animals, failing to provide proper sustenance, failing to provide the 9-year-old dog with appropriate shelter, among other charges. He was also forced to surrender this senior survivor to the SPCA, which is raising money to cover Zoe’s medical expenses and short/long-term care. (You can follow Zoe’s progress by following SPCA’s Facebook page, or help sponsor her medical care by making a donation on their website).

“We share these graphic photos and her story because we want to highlight the very sad fact that animals like Zoe are in our communities suffering and we need your help to combat the inhumane treatment of animals,” the SPCA wrote. “This is an example of how when folks who care come together, we can make a difference.”

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J. Swanson is a writer, traveler, and animal-enthusiast based in Seattle, an appropriately pet-crazed city where dog or cat ownership even outweighs the number of kids. When the weather permits, she likes to get outside and explore the rest of the Pacific Northwest, always with a coffee in hand.
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