Dog frozen to ground survives

Posted at 3:36 PM, Jan 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-03 15:36:20-05

FLINT, MI (WJRT/CNN) - An injured dog spent the night out in the bitter cold, but he's been given a second chance after an animal rescue group found him.

The dog has been through a lot. They believe he was hit by a car, then frozen to the ground, yet somehow he survived. 

They are trying to find out where he belongs.

"This is not a stray dog. This is somebody's loved pet," said Bill Heatley, founder of Streethearts Animal Rescue.

"He has a fractured femur. His leg bone is broken very high up, and I can't fix it. He would need anesthesia to have more X-rays done to completely determine whether anything else is broken," said Dr. Lawrence Ehrman with Veterinary Medical Hospital.

His ordeal began on New Year's Eve, when a witness says he was hit by a car in a Flint neighborhood.

"She heard the impact, looked out, heard the dog cry, looked out, ran to her backyard. As soon as he entered her backyard, he went and laid down at the back of the yard and didn't move for over 24 hours," Heatley said.

She called 911. The dispatcher called Heatley, who found the dog badly injured but still alive.

"When I got to the point where I meant to move him, I had wrapped him. And I went to lift the blanket and it wouldn't move," Heatley said. "I actually had to peel him off the ice."

Once he was safely removed from the ice, the dog was rushed to a veterinary hospital.

"The first consideration with this dog was organ damage or failure, and thankfully the veterinarians both say because of his very thick heavy coat, that probably saved him," Heatley said.

"We've just been taking care of him, giving him pain medication, let him relax making sure he eats and awaiting decisions on what goes on from here," Ehrman said.

As the dog they named Feliz continues to recover, Heatley is hoping his owner comes forward or they find him a new home.

In the meantime, they will continue to try to save other animals from suffering a worse fate than Feliz.

"The sad thing ... is that's one dog that we found," Heatley said. "There are a multitude of dog out here in the city of Flint and cats, they're not being found, that we don't know about."

They are hoping the owner comes forward, and they also have set up a Youcaring page to help with Feliz's medical bills, which are expected to run into the thousands.    

On the Youcaring page, the rescue group saidFeliz is expected undergo surgery on Thursday to try to save his leg.

Copyright 2018 WJRT via CNN. All rights reserved. Raycom News Network contributed to this report.