Rescue groups give abused Rottweiler a new leash on life

11/27/2012
BY TANYA IRWIN
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Trey, formerly known as Bubba, was picked up running at large by the Lucas County Dog Warden dragging a 25-pound chain.
Trey, formerly known as Bubba, was picked up running at large by the Lucas County Dog Warden dragging a 25-pound chain.

In a little over a month, one Rottweiler’s life has taken a 180-degree turn for the better.

On Oct. 24, the dog was picked up by the Lucas County Dog Warden on Danberry Street in West Toledo after a concerned citizen called to report they saw the emaciated dog dragging a large chain down the street.

Named Bubba by the pound employees, and estimated to be 6 to 8 years old, the male dog had an embedded collar attached to the 25-pound chain and his neck was crawling with maggots.

The pound’s veterinarian removed the collar, revealed a 2-inch-deep wound. And so began the road to recovery.

“You could see tendons after we removed the embedded chain,” Lucas County Dog Warden Julie Lyle said. “It was one of the worst ones I’ve ever seen.”

It’s no surprise Bubba - who was later renamed Trey by volunteers at a New York Rottweiler rescue group that took the dog in - had some behavioral issues, more than likely related to the care – or lack thereof – the dog received before coming to the pound.

“He had trouble trusting people,” Ms. Lyle said. “He was very touch-sensitive. He was in a lot of pain and didn’t want people messing with him.”

Knowing the pound was not the environment the dog needed to heal and learn to trust again, employees went to work trying to find a rescue group with an experienced foster person to take it.

Local groups didn’t have a place for the dog, but networked nationwide to rescue organizations that specialize in Rottweilers.

That’s when Rottie Empire Rescue in New York got involved. The group heard about what happened and offered a second chance at a new life.

Trey, formerly known as Bubba, pictured as he was found with an embedded collar attached to a 25-pound chain.
Trey, formerly known as Bubba, pictured as he was found with an embedded collar attached to a 25-pound chain.

“It was a great example of networking helping to save a dog in need,” Ms. Lyle said. “I think he’s in really good hands.”

He was 95 pounds when he left the shelter on Nov. 17 with Patrice Elka and her daughter Emmalee. Mrs. Elka, of Willis, Mich., drove the dog from Toledo to Newburgh, N.Y., where she met Phil Karsten, another rescue volunteer, who drove the dog the rest of the way to Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

Volunteer Darryl Saunders is working with the dog on behavioral issues. Trey has 160 fans following his progress both in Ohio and New York via his Facebook page, “Trey the Rottweiler,” at facebook.com/TreyTheRottweiler.

“This was a huge group effort,” said Tina Hudson, president of Rottie Empire Rescue. “It is a really nice story of how everyone came together.”

Rottie Empire Rescue is trying to find out who owned Trey so charges can be brought against the person, Ms. Hudson said. If anyone in the Toledo area has any information on where the dog came from or who is responsible for his condition, they can email confidentially to rottieempirerescue@gmail.com.

The group is in need of donations to continue to pay for the dog's care. More information on donating can be found on the group’s Web site at rottieempirerescue.com.

Eventually, Trey will go up for adoption and the rescue group will ensure that its new owners are ready to deal with any challenges resulting from the horrible life he had in Toledo.

“He needs a home where they will understand and accept him,” Mr. Saunders said. “A home that will treat him with the love, respect, dignity and care he deserves. Something mankind has failed him on, until now.”

Contact Tanya Irwin at tirwin@theblade.com or 419-724-6066.