This is Davinia’s Story what you are about to read is going to be extremely graphic.
Our long time readers know that Davinia was viciously attacked on December 26, 2009 by two dogs who were supposed to be guarding a house that was under construction. Two junk yard dogs who got bored in a residential neighborhood where adults and children and other dogs walked by all day long and they sat there doing nothing for days other then jumping up onto the fence and barking at anyone that went by. Two dogs who either crawled under the fence or jumped over it (if you want to go with the theory that the dogs weren’t strong enough or bored enough to dig the hole or push the chain link fence out of the way) in order to entertain themselves and run around the neighborhood for fun.
I did see one of the dogs before the attack began coming out from behind some bushes. But up until that night I had no reason to fear a loose dog and just thought it was a neighbors dog that had somehow gotten loose after a post Christmas party or had accidentally been locked out of their house and was prepared to figure out where it belonged and take it home. Davinia and Indiana both saw the dog and made no indication that anything was wrong. There was no barking or pulling on their leashes nothing out of the ordinary to alert me that this wasn’t just a friendly dog who heard us coming and thought we could either help it get home or play with us. What I didn’t know was that we were being boxed in by another dog who to this day I cannot tell you where it came from. And then it happened in the blink of an eye they had both grabbed Davinia in their mouths and were treating her body as a tug of war game. I know it lasted more then a few second but how many minutes it lasted I don’t know. I know I was screaming for help loud enough and long enough to attract the attention of the people whose house it was happening in front of and that they called the police. I also know that it lasted long enough for another family who was coming home from a late dinner to hear me and for the daughter to convince the father that she knew who we were and to come and help us. It lasted long enough for Davinia’s body to go limp and for her to no longer be making any sound before help came running over. I know that at some point I picked up Indiana and was holding her so she wouldn’t be next.
During the entire time that she was attacked I held on to her leash no matter how hard they tried to pull her away from me or how hard they were hanging into me trying to get at Davinia. I knew that I couldn’t let the two dogs take her away even though at some point all I thought all they were going to leave behind was her dead body. I knew I couldn’t let them take her away from me. I know that by the time the police arrived I had already picked up Davinia out of a pool of her own blood who was barely alive. I know I had asked the family that helped if they could watch Indiana while I took Davinia to the Emergency hospital. The father drove us to the Emergency Hospital and his son and his son’s friend rode with us. I am convinced that by going to the emergency hospital that we went to that Davinia is here with me today.
I remember banging on the door and asking the two boys to bang on the door with me to try and get whoever was inside to hear us. I also remember that when they came to the door for the first second they were upset that I didn’t just knock or ring the bell once and wait. That is until they realized I was carrying Davinia in my arms and covered in blood. Davinia was in shock and they had her on IV, Antibiotics, and pain medication. It literally took them over an hour to stabilize her enough to say she was in critical condition and needed emergency surgery. While she was in surgery I was questioned by animal control until the vet came out to give us an update at which time the animal control guy was allowed to go in and take pictures. When he came out of the surgery room he did not ask me a single other question finally realizing that he wasn’t called out on two dogs getting into a fight and that my dog was fighting for her life. He left and eventually the Chief of Police from my community arrived after processing the scene. He also went into the room where the veterinarian was performing the surgery and then left. Davinia was in surgery for several hours. When the veterinarian finally came to give a full update it was to tell me that Davinia had survived the surgery and that he had literally checked all of internal organs including her heart for bite marks. She had some organ damage, he basically had to reattach one of her front legs because the dogs had literally pulled it out of its socket and damaged the nerve and that her pelvis was fractured. He said that he knew he could fix her injuries but that it would be up to her heart to keep her alive. That her heart would have to be able to pump on its own and replace the blood she had lost. They could help bringing her body temperature back up with heating pads underneath her and oxygen pumped into the crate she was in but that her body had to fight.
For days she just continued to get more and more anemic. By the time Monday night had rolled around and the orthopedic surgeon had taken a look at her x-rays it was determined that her pelvis was actually fractured on both side and that a piece was floating around inside of her that looked like it had been bitten off. Her levels just kept dropping. I could only visit with her for a few moments at a time because she would try and move and she could not pick herself up with her back legs on a pelvis that was fractured on both side and with one front leg with such extensive nerve damage it never healed all the way. She was still in critical condition and a less conservative vet might have infused her at this point. But the fear was that if they did that her body would think it didn’t need to produce red blood cells and she would be dangerously anemic again in a week. So they just let her numbers continue to drop.
She still was not eating on her own Monday night and her levels were still dangerously low and dropping. Tuesday morning when the vet called me to give me an update I was told to bring her anything I thought she would eat that would provide her nutrition to help her body begin the long journey to healing. I dropped some food off because they didn’t want her to use all her energy on seeing me and instead wanted her to use it to eat. Tuesday night I went back to visit her and speak to the vet. They were still holding off transfusing her but she had eaten during the day so they were hopeful that her blood levels would begin to improve on their own because her appetite was good and she was willing to eat what I had brought her. I was allowed to visit her briefly but it was time for all the dogs to go potty and so was asked to leave her area. I was talking to the vet about how things would be moving forward and when I left and was walking back to the car I see a dog being helped using a sling by a vet tech to go potty. As I got closer I noticed the dog’s tail wagging.
It wasn’t until I was almost right next to the dog that I realized that it was Davinia. Her tail was wagging. She wasn’t standing on her own far from it but she was outside and her tail was wagging. That is when I knew that she was fighting and was going to do everything she could to get better and come home.