A dog found tied and shot along a county roadway late last month is set to join her new foster family today.
Camilla, a 2-year-old terrier mix, has been recuperating at Maiden Small Animal Hospital the last couple of weeks following treatment and surgery for her injuries.
On Dec. 27, a woman spotted the dog in a ditch while driving down Sorrells Baxter Road, on the southwestern end of the county.
She contacted Lincoln County Animal Services after discovering the dog had been shot in the head and legs tied with rope, according to LaDonna Mabe, head of Happy Tails Rescue, Inc.
“I was blown away that someone could do something that heinous,” Mabe said.
The local animal hospital contacted the rescue group upon receiving Camilla, since the facility has cared for a number of Happy Tails dogs since Mabe started the nonprofit in April 2012.
The rescue has since been in charge of covering Camilla’s pricey vet expenses and finding her a foster home.
While Mabe said her rescue was already at maximum capacity, with 28 dogs at the time she received word of the injured dog, she couldn’t deny Camilla care.
“She’s already endured so much,” she said, “we’re going to make sure she goes to the best home we can get. We would really do it for any animal.”
Camilla received no skull damage from the gunshot wound but did have an eye removed during surgery, veterinary officials said.
Happy Tails is currently offering an $800 reward for whoever identifies the person who abused Camilla.
Animal abuse is considered a felony offense in North Carolina.
The group is also collecting donations to pay for the dog’s vet bills.
Happy Tails is equally concerned about additional area dogs, particularly those who live outside during the winter months without proper shelter.
Mabe is using her nonprofit to collect new, used and plastic doghouses for dogs needing both warmth and a roof over their heads. After collecting them, she plans to drop them off at residences where she’s spotted chained dogs.
“When you’re a rescuer, you constantly look over at people’s houses,” she said.
Mabe has already spotted a number of dogs within a five-mile radius of her work that could benefit from a doghouse.
The animal rescuer works at Piedmont Express Services trucking company in Catawba County. Her co-worker Crystal Gillian, who also helps with Happy Tails, started her own group, Sassy Paws Angel Rescue, in October so the two friends could reach even more local canines, Mabe said.
Both groups, and more information on each, can be found on Facebook. Individuals may also visit happytailsrescueinc.wix.com/happy-tails-rescue.
To send donations, call (704) 507-5307 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.