Rocky, a German shepherd, chewed off one of his paws to escape a too-tight chain, an Orange County rescue organization says.
The 11-month-old animal is recovering after surgery to amputate a portion of his right hind leg. The rescue organization Coastal German Shepherd Rescue in Placentia believes the dog chewed off skin, tissue and even toes to free himself from a tightly wrapped chain.
"He literally chewed his foot off to free himself from the confinement and the pain," according to the rescue group.
Coastal German Shepherd Rescue noticed Rocky's wound after picking him up from a local shelter last Monday.
The pup's owners "claimed they didn't known what happened" to his foot but that he may have eaten it off, according to the rescue organization. Veterinarians examined Rocky's foot and found ligature marks and "festering wounds." They removed his foot due to infection and damage.
"He had a successful surgery and is already walking like a pro on three legs," the rescue organization said. "He loves his toys and has figured out how to make the cone work to his advantage."
Representatives with the rescue group said Orange County animal control officials are investigating Rocky's case. More at the rescue's Facebook page (warning: Photo is graphic).
There's a happy ending for Rocky. Tim Wheaton, manager of the clinic where the dog's surgery was performed, said a foster family picked him up on Saturday and took him to his new home in San Diego.
The family has fostered a dog with severe injuries in the past, he said.