|Gunner kisses Sam, his blood donor dog; Gunner plays with Forrest, another 3-legged pitbull; Gunner after surgery|
Gunner’s second year on this earth ended far better than it began. Not long ago, this sweet Pit Bull was cruelly shot in the chest and left to die. A local shelter took Gunner in but planned to euthanize him because: 1) Gunner was a pit bull. 2) Lack of space at the shelter. 3) High medical costs. But Gunner hit the lottery when Melanie Aitken became involved. For the next several weeks, Melanie worked tirelessly with volunteers and board members from Holly’s Place to save Gunners’ life.
The first 3 days were critical. Gunner’s leg had to be amputated, and during surgery, he experienced massive blood loss and shock. Donor blood arrived post haste from Dr. Bevins’ dog Sam, and Liz Norris and Melanie (relieved by volunteers) stayed with Gunner around the clock for two days. Liz then fostered Gunner for two weeks of recovery. Gunner was near death more than once through this ordeal but was brought back by the love and care of concerned animal lovers.
As soon as he was well enough, Gunner visted his new home with Laurie and Todd. They fell in love, and so did Gunner. He now goes to work with Laurie every day and is a certified therapy dog with K-9 Pawsibilities Unleashed. Ironically, Gunner shares Laurie and Todd’s home with Forrest, another amputee saved by Dr. Bevins and Melanie a year ago. These two three-legged pals get around fine, love life, and help others do the same.
From a horrible act of cruelty, Gunner’s miracle now helps patients in Shriners Hospital in Lexington look for their own miracles. Gunner’s story demonstrates that marvelous things can happen when people work together. Holly’s Place and Gunner would like to thank Melanie, Shaye, Melissa, Dr. Bevins, Liz, Sam, and all the other caring folks who had a hand in his miraculous survival story.