CARLSBAD, Calif. -- (KSWB) -- A horribly disfigured Pointer mix rescued from the streets of Tijuana earlier this year is scheduled to undergo surgery Thursday at a veterinary hospital in Carlsbad to repair his front right leg.
Dwayne “The Rock” previously had an operation to make his lips fully cover and protect his teeth and help him to eat and drink more normally. The canine's muzzle was damaged when his owner bound him with a crude wire muzzle.
Officials at the Helen Woodward Animal Center said the leg surgery will be the most difficult veterinary procedure yet for the 2-year-old dog as they try to avoid amputation of the limb. According to the center, the leg was dislocated and fractured and left to hang.
“Since I see him every day, I know that he does use the leg,” said Patricia Carter, his veterinarian and foster owner.
“In spite of the horrible abuse he endured, he's still just a puppy and he loves to play and romp around with his foster siblings,” Carter said. “We'll all have our paws crossed that he gets to keep the leg.”
She said she hopes to insert a motion-restricting plate into the elbow which would stop degeneration of the tissues and prevent Dwayne from experiencing pain. The surgical team won't know if he's a good candidate for a plate until they begin the surgery, however, since the treatment is unusual for such complex damage.
“We are all incredibly anxious about this surgery, but we are also so relieved that it is finally getting done,” center spokeswoman Jessica Gercke said. “The most important thing to all of us is that Dwayne lives the rest of his life pain-free. He has such a beautiful spirit and we know he'll come through this procedure as joyfully as he has all the others.”