Belfast Telegraph

Abandoned pup Banjo to get his bounce back as public dig deep for vital leg op

By Kate Buck

A plucky pup could have been facing doggy death row if it hadn't been for the generosity of strangers who donated £500 to save his leg.

Banjo was dumped at the pound because he was lame, and when they didn't have any space for him, he was taken to Campsie Veterinary Centre in Omagh to be put down.

But vet Jennie McMullan refused to euthanise such a beautiful young dog, and she knew he could have a great life ahead of him.

Jennie said: "We had seen him quite a few times when the rescue centre had brought him in and I just couldn't put a healthy dog down. He has such a lovely personality and the problem that he had is very fixable.

When Banjo came to Campsie Vet Centre he was diagnosed with cruciate ligament damage, which is the most common cause of rear-leg lameness in dogs, and a major cause of degenerative joint disease.

Banjo's microchip showed that he was about 18 months old and had the details of his first owners, who had to have him rehomed.

Jennie and the team at Campsie Vets decided to try and raise £500 to help cover the surgery needed to fix Banjo's leg.

It took just 50 minutes for the target to be reached thanks to the generosity of strangers.

"We always try and do things pro bono when we can and help as many animals as possible", Jennie said. "But this was going to be a highly specialised surgery, so we needed extra funding.

"When we set up the funding page to try and get the money for his surgery we never expected this to happen because we can usually cover the costs ourselves.

"When we saw how quickly the money had been raised staff were messaging backwards and forwards.

"This is quite a common injury for large dogs if they are going too fast and suddenly change direction. Banjo is quite bouncy so it's easy to see why he hurt himself.

"We hope to have his surgery done either on Friday or Monday, once done his prognosis is very good. This surgery has a very good success rate as it is correcting the joint and he should be on it almost straight away.

"He may develop arthritis in later life but that wouldn't limit his life.

"We don't ever see many dogs coming from rescues for euthanasia and the ones we do usually have behavioural problems so it's very rare we see one that is healthy," she said.

"He has really struck a chord with people but others are not always so lucky."

Banjo is due to have his surgery by Monday, and should be fighting fit and ready to be adopted over the coming months. He will stay in the care of the vets until his forever home is found.

Jennie added: "I don't think we will have any problems finding a home for him. He's such a loving dog and he will make the perfect family pet."

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