Gabriel was born in a puppy mill and was sold when he was barely a month old. The buyer wanted a pit bull that would grow up to be big and tough-looking. What they all didn’t realize was that the puppy was suffering from swimmer syndrome.
When it dawned on the owner that Gabriel was never going to be the dog that he envisioned, he surrendered him to Heather and Kat Marchant. He said that he didn’t have the time and the patience to give the dog what he needs.
He further added that if they were able to “fix” the dog, he would gladly take him back.
Heather and Kat knew that Gabriel was going to have to go through a long process of rehabilitation. The two have fostered many dogs suffering from the same condition, but Gabriel is one of the most severe cases they have come across. Swimmer syndrome is a congenital defect that causes the legs to splay out from the body.
This condition can be turned around but only if it’s treated early on with extensive physical therapy. This meant round-the-clock care and hours of leg strengthening exercises. But the two women were more than happy to do that for the poor pup.
Every day they would patiently feed and work with Gabriel. Progress came slowly, but it was very encouraging. Within a month, the pitbull pup was able to prop himself up. And after three months, he was able to stand on all four legs.
Walking was another matter though. They noticed that the puppy walked with a limp. And after having the leg checked out by a vet, they discovered that there was a serious defect in one of his elbows. They had to amputate the leg as it would cause more pain in the future.
Despite having only three legs, the dog was active and happy. He would run around every time he had the chance. And his character caught the eye of Terri and Anne. When the dog was fully healed, they adopted him.
Gabriel has settled in well with his new family and is now living a healthy and happy life. His new owners really love him so much, and it’s certain that the dog would never feel unwanted ever.