Animal rescuers are fighting to save the life of a puppy that had suffered “horrifying neglect” and mistreatment.
Rex, a 10-month-old XL bully, was brought to the RATS Pet Rescue centre in Buntingford, Hertfordshire, in a starved state – his ribs visibly protruding from his body due to lack of food.
He was also bleeding and had bite marks on his body, which charity workers believe to be an indication that he had been used for baiting or fighting.
His ears had also been illegally cropped.
Jenna Jones, from RATS, said: “When we received an email from a lady looking to rehome her XL bully and we asked her to bring him to our kennels for an assessment with our team, we assumed that this would be a case of an ill-thought-out ‘impulse buy’ and that the owner was simply struggling with a big and boisterous young dog.”How wrong we were.”
Chronic vomiting revealed he’d eaten pieces of plastic and string, which staff believe was because he was so desperate for food that he tried eating anything he came across.Rex was so weak that he could barely walk, and he collapsed at the kennels shortly after arriving at the centre on Tuesday and had to be rushed to Great Ashby animal hospital in Stevenage, where he is still being treated.
RATS set up a JustGiving page to try to raise money for Rex’s treatment, aiming to raise £5,000.
The total raised now stands at over £12,000.Jenna said: “It is overwhelming to see the outpouring of support and donations we have received from people across the nation in their bid to help our cause – particularly at a time where the cost-of-living crisis is having a major impact on us all.
“Because of the kindness of others, our JustGiving page has now reached a record-breaking amount in donations, and we are hoping this will keep growing.
“When Rex first arrived, the state he was in was truly shocking – he resembled an emaciated bag of bones and seemed to have completely shut down and given up on life.”
“Although we are a small charity run entirely by volunteers, our team remains steadfastly committed to ensuring Rex has the very best care and support to overcome this terrible ordeal, and we will do everything we can to pursue justice for him.”
Rex has been gathering strength and is now able to eat and drink by himself and has started to wag his tail again.
The pooch will remain in the care of the hospital until completely recovered and then RATS will try to rehome him into a loving and secure home.