Skip the dog gets a prosthetic paw

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A North Valley dog born with a bone deformity is getting a second chance after losing his paw. "Skip" the pit bull has been fitted with a prosthetic paw and he no longer skips like his name implies.

But at two months old, he was almost euthanized when his former owner brought him to the Merced Veterinary Clinic with an open wound. "There was some bone exposed and that's when we said, you need to make a decision: either amputation, or go ahead with euthanasia," said Dr. Betty Lawson.

Unable to afford amputation, the family opted for euthanasia. But then, veterinary technician Xenia Onofre volunteered to take him in. "He was young and he was a puppy. I felt like he deserved a chance to be a dog and be a puppy," said Onofre.

Months of medication, bandages, and an unsuccessful surgery followed Lawson contacted Spencer Greene at Merced's Hanger Clinic. He volunteered his services to help the pup. "It's nice to see him acting like a regular puppy. That's what this is about. Getting him to be a regular puppy," said Greene.

Skip's new paw is also easing the pressure on his other joints and he now shares a special bond with a famous marine animal. "Winter," the star of 'Dolphin Tale' also had a prosthetic engineered by the Hanger Clinic. Though Skip hasn't reached star status, he, too, is a survivor.

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animal, merced, merced county, local, amanda perez
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