Elderly dog infested with maggots was left for dead in wooden box on hottest day of the year
An elderly dog's coat was so matted with filth and maggots that rescue workers could not determine her head from her tail.
April was dehydrated and had ulcers in her eyes and a serious mouth infection when she was found abandoned in a box outside the Dogs Trust Centre in Ballymena last month.
The little dog was close to death in what is said to be one of the worst cases of neglect that her rescuers have seen. Now the crossbreed, who is thought to be around 10 years old, has recovered and is seeking a new, loving home.
April found comfort in wearing a woolly sweater each day and curling up beside a radiator to help her keep warm after her coat was cut short to deal with the horrific condition she was found in.
"April deserves to find a good home to live out the rest of her days after what she's been through," said assistant manager Sarah Park. "We have all taken her to our hearts and everybody loves her. She's the type of little dog who likes to be well looked after and so she needs a nice, quiet retirement home with an owner who can love her."
She added: "It was really touch and go for April for a while as we had to rush her to the vet after one of our staff found her at the front of the property on April 22.
"That was on one of the hottest days of the year. She was left in this hot box and was a really pitiful sight. Her hair was so filthy and matted you couldn't see her face.
"We didn't initially know where her head and tail were. She was really dehydrated so we put her on a drip and rushed her to the vet.
"She had ulcers in her eyes from her matted hair, she couldn't eat because of her throat infection and maggots were found in her coat. The vet said that from the size of the maggots they had been in her coat for a long time."
After emergency vet treatment and loving care and attention, April has responded well to her carers and seems happy to play with people.
"She's eating very well now and loves her treats, we couldn't be happier with her recovery and she grows stronger each day. We will be sad to see her go but she deserves a good home," said Sarah.
April is thought to be a mixture of Yorkshire terrier and Lhaso Apso and between 10 and 12 years old.
Her photo can be seen on the Dogs Trust Ballymena rehoming centre website, www.dogstrust.org.uk, with other dogs needing new homes.
Anybody who can offer April a home is asked to call the rehoming centre on 0300 303 0292.