Dog found wandering with apparent gunshot wound undergoes surgery

HOLLYWOOD, FLA. (WSVN) - A young pup found roaming the streets of Southwest Miami-Dade with what appeared to be a gunshot wound to the jaw is recovering from surgery at a Hollywood animal clinic.

The Doberman mix was found in the area of Southwest 216th Street and 209th Avenue, Sunday.

“I just want to help you, honey,” said the woman who found the pup on a video recorded just before the rescue.

The dog’s jaw was shattered, infected and hanging from her face.

Dr. Briana Danielson, a surgeon at VCA Animal Hospital, said the bullet struck the canine in the lower jaw.

“It looks like most of the impact was in this region where we have her necrotic bone, and then, it probably ricocheted into the cheek,” Danielson said. “The bullet itself, or the main part of the bullet, was actually within the cheek tissue and retrieved from there.”

The initial assessment pointed to a gunshot wound.

“It’s awful,” said Jill Banaszak of Grateful Paws Dog and Cat Rescue. “It’s like, how can someone do this to something that can’t help themselves?”

Those with Grateful Paws Dog and Cat Rescue, with the help of the Doberman Rescue League and the Redland Rockpit Abandoned Dogs Project, are making sure the dog, now named Clover, gets the help she needs.

The pup was taken to VCA Hollywood Animal Hospital, Sunday night.

“You’re so tiny,” said one woman. “Who could do this?”

An X-ray revealed the extent of the damage.

“There are quite a few fractures that are evident,” said Dr. Natalie Savo, a veterinarian at VCA Hollywood Animal Hospital. “We do see some metal pieces in there indicative possible of a gunshot.”

Surgeons said Clover was in pain for some time.

“Unfortunately, this injury is not super recent,” said Danielson. “It’s probably a week or maybe a week and a half old, because there’s a lot of healing happening of the tongue already.”

Because the bone was rotting, it couldn’t be fixed, and Clover needed surgery to remove part of the jaw.

“She’ll just look a little bit different, but many dogs go on to do excellent with that type of procedure,” said Savo.

“This is and X-ray of how she looked afterwards, where that’s been removed,” said Danielson. “The tooth roots from the broken teeth have been removed, and then the soft tissues themselves have been brought around that region.”

Those that have had similar surgeries go on to be happy despite the cruelty they’ve endured.

Clover has a foster home waiting for her where she will recover surrounded by a loving family.

“They are very resilient,” said Banaszak. “They are much more resilient than people. It fills me with a little bit of hope and anger at some point at whoever could have possibly done this but more hopeful in that their worst days are behind them, and they are going to recover.”

Clover received surgery Monday night. Surgeons said she will be given a feeding tube while she learns to use her new jaw. They said her prognosis is very good. Clover has some infections but is being treated, and most of her tongue is intact.

“I think she’ll do quite well, you know, it’s gonna take some time for the discomfort and some of the swelling to come down, but she’s already trying to get food in her mouth, and so that’s a really good sign,” said Danielson. “I think she’s gonna be a really great little dog.”

Clover’s road to recovery will be long and expensive. If you would like to help Clover and support the rescues involved, click here.

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