ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) - Stray Rescue of St. Louis is proud to see a dog named Harris improving Tuesday just a few weeks after a woman dropped him off, saying she found him wrapped in a blanket on the side of I-270.
“Our vets immediately started working on him," said Donna Lochmann with Stray Rescue of St. Louis. “This side... with the wounds was just covered in urine and a feces smell and infection.”
He was so thin, she says, you could see his bones.
She calls it one of the worst cases she has seen. Veterinarians were forced to feed him through a tube, initially. He's just now able to eat on his own. He still has a tube; however, it is in his leg to help drain fluids.
“I think there were multiple times where we thought he might not make it," said Lochmann. “There was no way to tell what trauma happened to put him in this situation that he was in."
Harris isn't chipped and the woman who brought him in told Stray Rescue she doesn't remember where on I-270 she found Harris, making it almost impossible to catch who did this.
“We are grateful to her because who knows how long he would have laid there until he passed away," said Lochmann.
Harris' story is touching hearts around the world. Since posting his picture on the shelter's Facebook page, Harris has received dozens of donated blankets, pillows, toys, handwritten cards, even bandages to help with his open wounds.
“It’s amazing the outpouring of love that he has gotten," Lochmann said. “I’m sure he feels all of that. That’s part of what gives him the will to live and he feels love around here every day.”
Lochmann struggles with the idea of how someone could just leave an animal like Harris on the side of the highway, especially in such bad shape.
“I’ve heard people say they don’t care what happens to this one because I”ll just get another one. They’re not disposable. Until people’s mindsets change, unfortunately things like this are gonna happen," said Lochmann.
Hundreds of people have reached out to Stray Rescue wanting to adopt Harris. Lochmann says he still has a long way to go in the recovery process and won't be ready for at least a couple of months.
You can read Harris' full story here.
Several other animals need a home and are ready for adoption right now. You can learn more about those by visiting Stray Rescue of St. Louis' website.
UPDATE: June 4 at 10:30 p.m:
Harris is on the road to recovery, Stray Rescue says. The group says it does not know when he will be ready for adoption