WARNING: The following story contains graphic images
Heidi is a three-and-a-half-year-old German shepherd who is suffering from devastating injuries after she fell out of the back of a truck she was tethered to and was dragged behind it.
“When I first saw the pictures of Heidi’s injuries, I was shocked. Her paws and lower leg were worn down to the bone. The physical and psychological pain that this kind of tragic event would cause is unimaginable,” says Eileen Drever, BC SPCA’s senior officer protection and stakeholder relations. “Transport of an unsecured pet in the back of a pick-up is illegal, but as Heidi’s case shows even tethered transport poses serious risks. The best and safest way to transport dogs is always inside the vehicle, preferably with a harness made specifically for travelling in a vehicle.”
A witness to the tragic incident alerted the RCMP who found the owner and Heidi on the side of the road. Heidi was in critical distress, so she was seized by the RCMP and rushed to a veterinary hospital where she was immediately admitted for emergency surgery. Heidi remained at the hospital for three and a half weeks and received round-the-clock bandage changes and pain management. Heidi’s treatment plan is ongoing and will change as her injuries begin to heal. The BC SPCA is covering all of the costs of Heidi’s treatment.
The veterinary staff describe Heidi as a lovely dog, with a friendly disposition despite what she has been through. “They are all wishing Heidi a speedy recovery so she can begin the next chapter in her life and enjoy being a young shepherd,” says Drever.
Heidi is now at the BC SPCA’s Nanaimo animal centre. She will be available for adoption in mid-December.
The resilience of Heidi and animals like her has inspired a generous donations match up to $150,000 from Eileen & Anna (in honour of Rogue, Jaide & Leo), the Eldon & Anne Foote Fund at the Edmonton Community Foundation and an anonymous donor.