Pup gets gift of life

Published 8:16 pm Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Gizmo, a 3-year-old Lhasa Apso, was taken in by Bennett’s Creek Veterinary Care after he was surrendered by his owner to Suffolk Animal Control. After several surgeries, including one to remove a damaged eye, Gizmo is making a full recovery.

When a 3-year-old Lhasa Apso arrived at Bennett’s Creek Veterinary Care a couple of weeks ago, the staff wasn’t sure he could be saved.

The pup had been surrendered by his owner to Suffolk Animal Control and was in bad shape.

He had serious skin issues, a major flea problem and an umbilical hernia — but they weren’t even the worst of his problems.

Email newsletter signup

“His eye was hanging out of the socket,” veterinary assistant Heather Vick said. “It was like a horror movie.”

His other eye had two ulcers that had to be removed.

Bennett’s Creek took the dog in, named him Gizmo, and took on the challenge of fixing him up.

Vick said the staff was shocked by the severity of the dog’s condition when he arrived Dec. 13.

“His skin was terrible,” she said. “With his eye and everything, you didn’t even want to hold him.”

Vick said there is no way of knowing how his eye had been damaged — he might have been attacked by another dog or he might have bumped into something.

“You never know,” she said.

To fix him up, the doctors at Bennett’s Creek removed his eye, treated him for fleas and skin issues, repaired his hernia and neutered him, but after his surgeries, he is making a full recovery and letting his sweet disposition shine.

“He’s done a lot better,” Vick said. “It’s amazing to see how sweet they are, even after everything they have been through.”

She said living with one eye usually doesn’t hinder dogs, and Gizmo should be able to live a normal life as long as he finds an owner who takes care of his sensitive skin.

Vick said one of the employees at the vet’s kennel, Bennett’s Creek Home Away from Home, took Gizmo home for the weekend to see how he interacted with her other animals.

“She seemed to really like him,” she said. “We think it is going to work.”

The veterinary office was able to help Gizmo through its charity Eve’s Orphans, which was set up to provide funding for the care of orphaned and abandoned animals that would otherwise have been euthanized.

Through donations, the office was able to cover the $2,000 it took to care for Gizmo, and he is one of more than 10 animals that have been saved through the charity.

Eve’s Orphans is named in honor of a dog that was taken in as a stray with numerous health issues, was treated and was eventually adopted. Eve died earlier this year.

The group also has provided the money to save a kitten that needed its leg amputated because of neurological issues and to help Jada, a 4-year-old boxer mix that had her own team for Mutt Strut and is now looking for a forever home.

For more information, visit www.bcvetcare.com.