Last Of Litter – “tri-pawed” Joey Needs A Home

RSPCA SA seeks fresh start for amputee dog from convicted cruelty offenders

An 18-month-old dog surrendered to RSPCA South Australia inspectors along with his six surviving siblings and mother is now ready for a fresh start in a loving forever home.

Joey is currently in foster care with RSPCA SA trainee vet nurse Josie Deacon and is doing well with a routine that includes swimming at the beach to build his strength.

“Joey loves the water, even now when it’s getting chilly he’ll still paddle, he also loves his toys and he’s a clever boy who enjoys training – he’ll do anything for a tasty snack,” Josie said.

“He’s a young, energetic and playful pup and he would suit owners who live active lifestyles but who also understand his need for rest due to only having three legs to run around on.”

Joey has not had a good start to life. All six puppies and their three-year-old mother, named Macaroni, were in emaciated condition and suffering ringworm when found by RSPCA SA inspectors attending at a Whyalla Stuart property in January 2023. A seventh puppy was found lying down and barely breathing in the backyard. The puppy was immediately transferred to RSPCA’s Whyalla shelter and humanely euthanased.#

The surviving animals were transferred directly to RSPCA’s now closed shelter at Lonsdale, where all underwent vet checks and were placed on medication and strict feeding plans. Within 36 days Macaroni’s weight had almost doubled from 13kg to 25.6kg.

Joey and his siblings also regained weight and recovered, but Joey later suffered another medical issue that caused lameness in his right hind leg. Last November the veterinary team decided that amputation of the leg was the only way to give Joey permanent relief from the pain it was causing him.

All the puppies and their mother have now found new homes – except Joey. Josie is adamant this isn’t Joey’s fault.

“We’ve got Team Joey gunning for this young dog, determined to do all we can to compensate for the suffering he endured due to chronic neglect in his first weeks of life,” Josie said.

“Joey’s thriving at home with me and my partner and he will continue to thrive in the right home with owners who understand dogs and who have the time and energy to invest in his ongoing reward-based training.

“Since leaving the shelter (which can be stressful for dogs) he’s transformed into the most delightful character.

“Our beautiful Joey is living proof of the massive difference foster care can make to an animal’s life, so if people aren’t able to adopt an animal, I encourage them to consider fostering one – it’s a great pathway towards pet ownership and all the care costs are covered.”

Anyone interested in meeting Joey with a view to adopting him can email RSPCA SA’s dog adoption team at [email protected].

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