Ark Animal Sanctuary: ‘Tuck’

Early one Sunday morning around 5 a.m. a lady was driving down the road out in Haynesville when she spotted something lying on the side of the road all covered with snow. As she slowed down, it moved. At first she was not sure what it was, and did a double take when she realized it was a dog. She stopped the car and started talking to it and trying to get it to trust her, and that was when she noticed the huge wound on the top of its head. As the dog moved, she could see it was limping.  She called her husband to come, and he called the state police as well, who in turn called the ACO.

Her husband arrived and got the dog in her car. The ACO couldn’t come but told her to let him know the outcome.  Knowing the dog needed help she made one more phone call and that was to The Ark.

At 6 a.m. I was the one who answered that phone call. I threw on some clothes and hurried out the door. The lady drove the dog to my salon, where I met her, and we moved the dog into my car and headed for the Brewer emergency vet clinic two hours away.  The dog was exhausted and in a lot of pain. He finally stopped shaking about an hour into the ride. It was below zero out and the reason he was limping was because of the cold.

Once at the vet clinic he was examined and put on two pain meds and antibiotics to help with the infection and the swelling. They suggested we take him to our own vet on Monday as the wound would require sedation and possibly surgery.

Once he had some pain meds in him he conked out. He was exhausted.  We headed back home. Monday was a holiday, so it was Tuesday before we could take him to our vet, but he was resting comfortably.

Tuesday morning at the vet, he was sedated to debride the wound.  It was determined that this was a thermal injury, meaning one of two things: either something got thrown at his face or it was frostbite.  I have a hard time with the frostbite theory because the tips of his ears were not injured, nor were the pads of his feet. The entire top of his head down to his shoulder blades had wounds.  He spent the week at the vet, where he was sedated every few days and the wound was cleaned and bandaged. This whole process will take two to three weeks. It was also determined that this was an old injury at least two weeks old.

I should say that we named this sweet boy Tucker, “Tuck” for short, after the wonderful lady that found him.

Every day we watched the lost and found to see if anyone was missing this boy and there was nothing. In our hearts we kind of knew that no one would step forward: 1) because of the condition of the dog; 2) it was below zero — why was a dog out in that kind of weather in the early morning hours; 3) there was no collar or tags and the dog was not chipped; and 4) the injury was an old injury, so if he had an owner why wasn’t it tended to?

We are well past the legal amount of time required by law to hold the dog before it becomes a legal member of The Ark.  The vet bills are mounting and will be paid for by the Ark.

Where did Tuck come from? Who did he belong to?  Why is no one missing him? Did the owner see his wounds and was not financially able to get him the help he needed, or worse yet, did someone intentionally harm Tuck?

No matter what the answers to these questions are, this poor boy did not deserve any of this.

If there is anyone out there who has any information about Tuck and how he got these injuries, please come forward and let us know.  Call Lorraine at 532-7387. We will not rest until we find some answers for this sweet boy.

Tuck is an intact red heeler/Aussie mix about 1 to 2 years of age.

For now, Tuck remains at the vet until his wounds are healed.  Thank you, Lynn, for stopping early that morning on your way to work and for helping Tuck.

Tuck’s information has been forwarded to animal welfare. What’s under the bandages will break your heart.

We are in the process of coming up with a fundraiser to help with Tuck’s medical bills, so stay tuned.

Get the Rest of the Story

Thank you for reading your 4 free articles this month. To continue reading, and support local, rural journalism, please subscribe.