By Erin Coleman, WSB-TV Atlanta
A metro veterinarian says a driver likely dragged a dog under a car, and it's one of the worst cases he's seen.
Channel 2’s Erin Coleman went to Peachtree Hills Animal Hospital Monday where the dog's recovering, but the bills are adding up.
“He got hit by a car and got dragged across the pavement and it ripped the skin away all the way down to the bones of his face,” said Dr. Duffy Jones about Ben, a happy young lab mix recovering at the animal hospital.
Ben lost about 25 percent of his face, and part of his neck in the incident.
“This is one of the worst ones we've seen,” Jones said.
Jones said it will take several surgeries to get him back to 100 percent. But because he was also neglected, malnourished, and left with the gaping wound for as long as two weeks, his recovery will take even longer.
“I have a feeling that people saw him with this. It's hard to miss when you look at him and people didn't get him taken care of right away,” Jones said.
Ben was turned in to the Fulton Animal Shelter last week and the shelter immediately contacted an organization called Atlanta Lab Rescue. They saw he was in dire need of surgery but that surgery is going to cost thousands of dollars.
“He's going to be here for a few more weeks in the clinic so all of that adds up,” said Alana Joyner with Atlanta Lab Rescue.
Atlanta Lab Rescue is footing the bill for now. They usually pay a few hundred dollars to help a dog in need. Ben's case will be much more expensive.
“We're definitely in need of donations,” Joyner said.
At this point, the staff hopes what happened to Ben wasn't intentional, but there's no way to know for sure.
“It all pulls at our heartstrings and our whole office had gotten honestly attached to him. He's such a good dog,” Jones said.
Right now, vets have him on a lot of antibiotics and pain medication. They told Coleman they have to keep scrubbing the wound, much like a burn victim before they can operate.