Heartwarming Rescue: Starving and Shot Dog Emerges from a Living Nightmare, Saved by Compassionate Rescuers’ Heroic Efforts

A dog that haunted the dreams of his rescuers is on the mend after being shot in the head and left to die. Stray Rescue of St. Louis was alerted about Lil Gus Gus after he was found in rural Missouri.

The rescue shares how Lil Gus ended up in their care. They write, “The person who found him saw that he had been shot in the head. He was malnourished, skinny, had mange, and needed help. She didn’t know what to do with him but knew she couldn’t leave him (aka a HERO!)”

Stray Rescue of St. Louis

The animal transporter took things from there and reached out to Cassady at Stray Rescue of St. Louis asking her, “Can you help him? The bullet went through his head but he’s going to live if we can get him help. He’s such a sweet boy. I know I ask you all the time, but you’re the only one that says yes time after time.”

Stray Rescue of St. Louis

Stray Rescue writes, “Cassady stared at the photos. She noticed how skinny he was. He’s also covered in fleas, has bad skin, and his teeth are filed down. This dog has been in a living nightmare, unable to escape the pain or pests on his own. That’s when Cassady said ‘Bring me that baby.’”

Stray Rescue relates that the transporter was so relieved that she texted Stray Rescue: “I had no idea what I was going to do with him, but I wasn’t going to leave him there suffering. I knew we’d somehow figure something out. I was screwed until you said ‘I’ll take him.’ I’m literally crying happy tears!”

Lil Gus Gus arrived at the shelter and had to be coaxed out of the crate with peanut butter. But he was soon wagging his tail and giving his rescuers kissing. His rescuers were instantly smitten.

“We say it all the time. It is often the sweetest, most trusting dogs that get shot because they are the ones that will walk right up to anyone,” the rescue writes on Facebook. “This dog. And his teef. And the way they get stuck on his lip… he has us all wrapped so tight around his paw already.”

As soon as he was inside their shelter, they began treating his infection. They cleaned his wound and got him on antibiotics and pain meds right away. X-rays revealed the bullet had fortunately not fractured his skull. Part of a bullet fragment is lodged in the dog’s skull but it will stay there as it shouldn’t cause any issues.

Stray Rescue of St. Louis

A week later, Gus Gus’s rescuers got wonderful news that his infection was under control.

“Our doctor declared he is officially out of the woods and is going to make a full recovery,” Stray Rescue shares in an update.

Stray Rescue is getting regular medicated baths to treat his sarcoptic mange and feeling better and better.

Stray Rescue of St. Louis

Although Gus Gus looks like an old fellow he’s only around two years old. His rescuers are now looking for a foster home for him where he continue to heal.

Pupdate: September 21, 2023

Lil Gus Gus has found a forever home with his foster mom!

Stray Rescue shared, “Lil Gus Gus’ foster mom couldn’t bear the thought of him ever going to live with anyone else. What she thought would be his foster home is now his forever home and he couldn’t be happier! It was her first time fostering, but we consider this quite the happy ending. Lil Gus Gus came to us needing immediate medical care after being shot in the head. Yes, you read that correctly. Thankfully for him, the bullet went in the front, bounced off of his skull and exited out the back without causing a fracture. He also had a bad infection as well as a skin infection. He is now happy, healthy, and family!”


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