REAL TAIL:  THE LAST CHANCE CLUB'S - 
       "Three Fifty Seven MAGNUM"

Marion County Dog Control Shelter is typically a very busy place. Each day is filled with in-coming dogs requiring initial exams, vaccinations and housing. Owners call and come to find lost pets. Resident dogs require care, cleaning, play periods and some, medical treatments. Temperment testing for adoptibility and new-owner counseling all take time. Post adoption call backs and adoption discharges all are one-on-one. Dog licensing and complaint calls keep the front desk busy. So when Dog Control Officer Julie Haskett arrived with another "lost dog" it should have been routine....but it wasn't. Everyone had to stop to see Magnum.

In the exam room, I knew something "big" was happening by the initial quiet then all the "wows" and "what could have happened to him?" I could smell him before I saw him......a tall Great Dane, striking black and white but soooo thin. His left side was towards me and I mentioned to Roxann, shelter vet tech, " He sure is stinky!"

"Well, here's why" she replied as she turned him around. He was injured in three major areas: ear, flank and thigh, on his right side. The wounds were a few days old and the deep thigh wound had maggots. He stood for his exam with patience, even allowing minor treatment of the sites but he was weak. A young adult male weighing 68 pounds......40-50% underweight. His treatment was going to be extensive and would require anesthesia. Typically, only minimal treatments can be legally done on stray animals in holding but Magnum need help now and there is a "Good Samaritan" legal option to allow treatment in critical situations which I felt covered his case. He was certainly a candidate for The Last Chance Club - veterinary medical and surgical rescue for Shelter dogs. Antibiotics along with topical and pain medications were started and Magnum was at Homestead Vet Clinic the next morning.

His procedures took over 2 1/2 hours. The wounds were extensive and contaminated. His ear was flayed open at the top with multiple circular wounds right through the cartilage. His side had a five inch linear tear again with circular lesions and that's where the bird shot was initially found. Someone had shot Magnum at close range. The bulk of the shot ripped out a 3 x 4 x 2 inch deep section of muscle in his thigh. Although the maggots were awful, this wound was clean of necrotic tissue. Forty-nine stitches and staples later Magnum was "reassembled". Opinions of how this happened centered on his trespassing on someone's property. But the pattern also indicated that dog and shooter were close, eight to ten feet, and Magnum was looking right at the person.

Magnum did great on initial healing and when his stray-time was up it was proposed he go to a rescue home to continue mending and gaining weight. He was so fortunate to enter a Great Dane rescue specific for injured Danes but here is where his story becomes surreal. His current care-giver was especially interested in Magnum when he was initially contacted. Seems he already has a Great Dane named Magnum who had the exact same pattern of wounds as MDCD's Magnum. His dog had been shot by his previous owner in an attempted euthanasia and left for dead. The owner was found and prosecuted. Trespassing or attempted murder....we may never know but if anyone knows this dog, please contact MCDC with information. There is no reason to subject any dog or animal to treatment such as this.

A.H.Brooks DVM
Homestead Veterinary Clinic THE LAST CHANCE CLUB
MDCD Aug 2008 



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