LEE'S SUMMIT, MO (KCTV) - A U.S. Army Reserve Iraq War veteran put his life on the line to save an injured dog on Interstate 470 on Tuesday, and Friday the two were reunited.
Aaron Schneider was headed home Tuesday afternoon when he saw another car hit the beagle on I-470 east and keep going. Schneider acted quickly, pulling over and bolting across three lanes of traffic. He said he put himself between oncoming traffic and the dog until he was able to coax the injured beagle off of the interstate.
"At the end of the day, my combat lifesaver training kicked in and I'm thankful I was able to use it to help him," Schneider said. "Having served in Iraq, you see a lot of loss, which is one of the reasons I was determined to see him make it."
Initially, he tried picking the dog up, but the beagle was in substantial pain and was defensive, so Schneider called 911 and was then referred to animal control for assistance.
He waited nearly three hours in the rain by the dog's side and was able to gain enough trust with the beagle to get him onto a makeshift stretcher and into the back of a friend's pickup truck.
"I just stayed right there by him. That way vehicles would see and I was waving them out of the way and we got to the side of the road, and once he got to the grass he just collapsed on the grass and was still yelping," Schneider said.
Schneider and his friend took the approximately 5-year-old beagle to Chipman Road Animal Clinic, where he was stabilized and veterinary staff named him Buster. He was then transferred to BluePearl Veterinary Partners due to the extent of his injuries.
"Without question, had Mr. Schneider not have helped Buster get to a veterinarian, he would have died from his injuries," said Dr. Brian Lucas, a board-certified veterinary internal medicine specialist with BluePearl.
Buster remains in the intensive care unit at BluePearl, but is expected to make a full recovery. Even though he was seriously injured, he is expected to go home on Tuesday.
Because no one has claimed Buster, he will be going home with Schneider.
Lee's Summit police say they have checked their records and do not show a 911 call from Schneider. A spokesman for the agency said it is possible that it was routed to the Kansas City Police Department based on the I-470 location.
"I can't confirm that they did get the call, but I can confirm that we did not," wrote Sgt. Chris Depue said in an email to news media outlets Friday night.
Through the animal hospital, Schneider confirmed Friday night that the call was not answered by Lee's Summit dispatchers. The animal hospital is declining to name the agency in question, believing that the focus should be on Buster and his recovery.
Copyright 2014 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.