US$339.00raised of $550.00 goal goal
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SHANGO, STORM-WATER TUNNEL SURVIVOR NEEDS SURGERY
Last Tuesday, 13 October, Shango, a beautiful Shepherd X dog managed to escape from her home and find herself on the N1, an extremely busy freeway in Cape Town. She had no idea of the nightmare that was about to happen. She was first knocked by a car on the N1, close to Paarden Eiland, panicked and fled; in the process she fell into a storm water drain on the side of the road. Luckily for her (or she would have never been found alive), a witness saw what happened, stopped and tried to follow her (the driver of the car that knocked her did not stop). However she had already ventured deep into the storm-water tunnel….
Many hours later and after several facebook posts, the dog’s owner was located. The rescue search could then begin. Volunteers and friends joined the devoted dog’s owner (a high school student) and her dad as they began to search, starting at the tunnel where she was last seen. About seven meteres into the tunnel, there is a nasty drop of over a meter. After having been hit by a car and sustaining severe leg injuries, poor Shango endured more injuries as she fell into the tunnel below. Traces of blood inside the tunnel indicated this is where she possibly was. After the tunnel drop, the drain branches in several directions. A few brave volunteers ventured into the tunnel (containing sewage and other nasties) and had to crawl or shuffle along in most parts due to height restrictions of the tunnel. Initially they ventured in the direction of the river, the most likely exit point; unfortunately this turned out to be the wrong direction to travel towards.
As you can imagine, the underground storm water drains are an enormous network of tunnels with numerous branch points and outlets and maps obtained on the Thursday morning confirmed this. Volunteers continued to search the river embankment, fields and every opening they could find late into Wednesday night; at this point Shango had been in the tunnels for around 30 hours with no food or water and was badly injured. No one knew if she was even still alive; we could only hope.
An animal communicator was contacted to try and assist; she believed Shango was still alive and gave everyone the necessary hope to continue the search. The brave volunteers went back into the tunnel (now Thursday morning) following the blood trail. Other volunteers searched open grassy banks along the N1, railway tunnels, any point where she could have exited. After 3 hours in the tunnel, the original team emerged to say they had seen a pair of eyes in the dark that they believed could belong to Shango. Could this be possible; had they found her…..?
What they were not expecting was at that very point to be confronted by what we think were some gangsters in the tunnel threatening to shoot them..!! All hope rapidly faded as they had to shuffle and crawl back down the tunnel at lightening speed, leaving Shango in the tunnel. The volunteers were notably in shock as they exited of the tunnel. At this point, the local police force (SAPS) and SPCA (animal law enforcement) were called to help and arrived on the scene shortly afterwards (thank you SAPS). However they were then called to an armed robbery so were unable to assist.
Knowing Shango was still alive and her rough location underground, we could not give up. Several hours later, a few more volunteers arrived, this time armed ready to brave the tunnel again. An agonizing 45min later, the group emerged from the other side of the N1 carrying a wet and visibly shocked dog. The relief on everyone’s faces to see Shango and the 6 people who went into the tunnel safe, albeit wet and dirty was priceless. Her devoted mom was so relieved to have her furbaby back. She was rushed to the vet to be stabilized overnight and have x-rays to determine the extent of her injuries.
Shango’s daring rescue brought together a group of complete strangers who went the extra mile to save this dog. This really was the most incredible community effort by many individuals. The story sounds too bizarre to be true but I can vouch that this is what happened.
Shango suffered a badly broken ulna and radius on her front leg and many other cuts and bruises. She requires quite extensive surgery to repair the damage (the initial quote was R26 000 at a private vet). She has since been transferred to the Animal anti-cruelty league so that she could have surgery as soon as possible rather than wait. After everything she went through she deserves the best treatment. Please consider making a donation, however big or small towards her treatment. Rusty’s rescues, a rescue organization who coordinated the rescue will be managing things.
Once all Shango’s medical bills are covered, any additional donations will go to Rusty’s rescues to help other animals in need.
- Meredith Kujawa
Shango's operation updateUpdate posted by Meredith Ann Kujawa at 05:00 pm
So after Shango was stabilized at the 24hour vet and received emergency treatment, she was transferred to the AACL vet for surgery. As it had already been several days between the accident and her emergency treatment, it was decided to get her operated on as soon as possible (rather than. . . . .