Call 911 to get help for injured animals

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Dogs hit by cars need quick care, and Colleton County Animal Shelter had a busy weekend to close out September.
Not only was there a tremendous amount of rain that caused flooded roadways and accidents, but there were also three dogs hit by cars, and the drivers did not stop to help. Thankfully, Good Samaritans stepped up to help by calling 911 or the shelter.
Officer Diane Cook of Colleton County Animal Services was called in to pick up one dog on Friday, after a little dog named Charlotte was found by rescuer Jennifer Brewer.
“I was extremely emotionally invested as soon as I saw her. As I was coming home from work, I saw something in the road flopping around. I hoped it wasn’t a dog, but it was. I jumped out to get her but my husband was worried she would bite me. A hunter came by and helped us get her out of the road. She couldn’t get her back end up. She had no collar and was skinny. Neighbors said she had been dropped off in the area a week ago. I don’t know why no one had helped her before this,” said Brewer.
“My husband and I didn’t know what to do. My mom said to call 911, but my husband thought they would put her down. The hunter didn’t know what to do either. I finally called Friends of Colleton County Animal Shelter that told me to call 911 for Animal Control. I called and Officer Paul Marting came,” added Brewer.
“I felt good about helping. If the poor dog needed to be put out of her misery, then I had to do something. I couldn’t stand the thought of her suffering, and I was hoping she could be saved. I was willing to use my own money if I had to. But I was happy to know she would be saved and taken care of by animal services,” Brewer said.
Brewer said that she was even more shocked to discover that the dog that she helped was pregnant because the animal was so skinny. Every car that passed would make her tremble.
On the roadside, she had a seizure because of the shock and stress. She had a broken pelvis, and the injury caused her to go into labor. But because of the pelvis injury, she couldn’t birth the puppies. She had to have medical treatment to deliver them, two of which died.
One survived, but the mother was in no condition to nurse, so the puppy was sent to a rescue organization to be fostered with other puppies being nursed by a surrogate dog mom who graciously included the new baby.
“I was so surprised that these animals could be helped thanks to FoCCAS. They helped guide me to contact Animal Services who worked hard to save this little dog and her puppy,” said Brewer.
“I think that most people who hit a dog in the road would like to stop to help but don’t know what to do,” said Laura Clark, director of Colleton County Animal Services. “Unfortunately, the dogs we treated this past weekend were hit by cars and left to die a slow agonizing death. We are grateful that these kind-hearted people saw the suffering animals and contacted animal services. That is the right thing to do. We are on call 24/7,” said Clark.
There is a county ordinance that states that if an animal is hit by a vehicle, the driver must contact animal services and report it. Failure to do so could result in a $485 ticket. There is no penalty for drivers who contact authorities to report accidentally hitting an animal, but there is a high dollar ticket given to those who are involved in a hit-and-run and leave an injured dog or cat.

“In this day and time, there is no excuse for anyone to not call us and report an injured dog or one dropped off in a neighborhood. Someone is always on call 24/7 and the vehicle driver or neighbor doesn’t even have to take responsibility for the animal. All they need to do is call Animal Services or 911. There are too many resources available, and no reason for people to be so uncaring,” Clark said. “So, stop, if you hit a dog or cat with your car and call us. No one is in trouble for hitting the animal and contacting us, but the moment you hit an animal and don’t call, you have broken the law. I will not hesitate to write a ticket to any driver who doesn’t call.”
If the dog’s owner is negligent by allowing the pet to roam and it gets hit by a car, the driver needs to report the incident because the owner could possibly be responsible for paying for damages to the vehicle. This is especially true for smaller cars that hit large dogs.
More importantly, it is usually imperative that injured dogs receive treatment as soon as possible. Quite often the injuries quickly turn toxic and the animal could suffer and then die.
Three of the dogs injured this past weekend were small breeds with broken limbs and one even had a broken jaw. One did not receive treatment immediately and had to be euthanized because people waited too late to call.
“If it is possible to successfully help the dog with surgery, then we will do so. But none of this could happen without the assistance of Friends of the Colleton County Animal Shelter (FoCCAS). They helped pay for the surgeries so we didn’t have to euthanize all of the animals. Because of financial assistance, these dogs will make wonderful pets once they have recovered,” Clark said.
On Monday, injured dog “Pumpkin” was found by Shelbi Davis and picked up by Officer Ashley Preacher. “I was going to the dump when I saw something on side of road. At first, I thought the dog was dead, but then I saw it lift its head,” said Davis. “When I approached the dog, I saw that it was cold, so I covered it with a blanket and called 911 for animal control. The dog was bleeding and crying, so I moved it into my warm car and sat with it until animal control came. We discovered that the little dog had a broken jaw. I am really happy they could save the Pumpkin. I will always stop to help injured animals … I will do it every time,” said Davis.
“We are so thankful for people like Jennifer and Shelbi who would take the time to stop and help an animal and contact us for help. We do advise people to exercise caution when dealing with an animal that is injured,” said Clark. 
“We are also thankful for Friends of Colleton County Animal Services for their amazing support and the staff at Veterinary Specialty Care for always doing their best for our community’s pets in need of medical care. 
“Every time we have to send an animal to receive extraordinary medical care in the evenings or weekends, it is very expensive. I am so thankful that we have FoCCAS to help. We just don’t have money in the county budget to cover such costs,” Clark said.
The recent Walk and Wag event raised some funds for the shelter, but the money was spent last weekend on surgeries.
To help injured dogs receive medical treatment, go to the FoCCAS website and click the button to make a donation.
If you see an injured animal, contact 911 or animal services at 843-893-2651. There is someone always on call.

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