He weighed just 15 pounds — about 30 pounds underweight — and had sores on his body and was so weak he couldn’t eat on his own.
A month later, Corporal has doubled his weight, enjoys some playtime with staff and is working toward a full recovery.
“To see his health turn around and the staff rally behind him is amazing,” said Lisa Lungaro, executive director of the local humane society. “It’s an inspiration.”
When staff members first saw Corporal, they weren’t sure that would be a possibility. The collie was so grossly underweight he couldn’t stand. He had been lying in the ditch so long the grass beneath him had begun to die. Yet Corporal hung on.
With around-the-clock care and some strength building, Corporal is now 29 pounds and can play. Even the wag of his tail is a sign not only his health is improving, but his spirits as well.
“As he’s gotten better, his personality is coming through,” said Gary Burmeister, the humane society's marketing and fundraising manager. “He’s a really sweet, low-key dog.”
The community has rallied behind the beleaguered dog, raising about $2,000 to help cover his medical expenses. More fundraising efforts are planned. Park Theatre in Holland is throwing a “TGIF Dance Party” on Friday with $2 of every cover charge going to the Harbor Humane Society. Proceeds from the Turnabout Show on July 12 in Saugatuck will also go to help the local humane society.
Corporal still has a long road ahead of him. He will undergo tests to determine if there is any damage to his organs from malnutrition and he requires constant monitoring.
But there is little doubt in Lungaro’s opinion that Corporal won’t pull through. Why?
“It’s in his eyes,” she said.
Want to help Corporal?
If you would like to hear more about Corporal or help donate to his recovery, the Harbor Humane Society may be reached at 616-399-2119 or you can donate by visiting harborhumane.org/hope-fund.htm.
Want to help Harbor Humane Society?
You can also help the humane society win a $50,000 “Building Our Community” construction grant by voting for the society at http://erhardtcc.com/community/vote.php. The grant is awarded by Erhardt Construction.
The Harbor Humane Society would like to use the funding to improve its facility — which has a leaky roof, structural decay and limited space in the building’s quarantine area.
Voting is open through July 13 and you can vote up to three times a day. The five organizations that receive the most votes in the first phase will move on to the second round of voting.
— By Curtis Wildfong, special to the Tribune