A vet team in Nanaimo is seeking the owner of a dog that passed away in its care Saturday, saying her health quickly declined despite recovery efforts.
Good Samaritans brought the female Wheaten Terrier/Doodle cross to Central Island Veterinary Emergency Hospital, after spotting her alone by a cliff at Trout Creek Falls near Campbell River Friday around 4 p.m.
Scott Lloyd says he was hiking with his daughter and son-in-law when they heard a dog crying out in distress.
“We started getting closer and walked to where this big huge dropoff was. I could see down below some white patches and could see a dog…” Lloyd told CHEK News. “The dog was trapped and couldn’t get out.”
The trio eventually rescued the dog and drove her down to Nanaimo.
“They found her and immediately brought her to us… Because it was a Friday after hours, we were the only ones available,” Teresa Fraser, the hospital’s practice manager, said in an interview.
“We took her in right away,” Fraser said.
She says the dog was clearly suffering and severely matted in all sorts of branches, sticky materials and burs, and looked as though she had been stranded for quite some time.
“She was in really, really poor condition when we got her,” Fraser recalled.
The phone number linked to the dog’s microchip was out of service, prompting the vet team to take to Facebook and plead for her owner to come forward.
“She did suffer a seizure in the middle of the night,” Fraser said. “And, of course, since there wasn’t an owner, we took on the costs ourselves at the hospital to provide her with the best gold standard care.”
Money didn’t matter at that point, according to Fraser. “We did everything we could to get her stabilized,” she said.
And things started looking up, however briefly.
“She had a moment of being able to walk, so she was ambulatory. She did eat a little bit of food, which was nice to see,” Fraser said.
“Then she took a turn and went downhill incredibly fast. She was suffering from some severe neurological inappropriate behaviour. She was not well.”
Fraser says her team euthanized the dog Saturday afternoon, noting she was finally safe, loved and at peace.
“Being open 24/7, we see animals in all types of trauma. We are a really strong team that works together to get through these tough times,” Fraser added.
“A lot of the times are super positive and wonderful to be able to treat these patients, but there are times like this when it’s very hard for the team. But knowing she was loved up until her last breath — that’s most important.”
Information about Central Island Veterinary Emergency Hospital, including contact and donation details, can be found online.