The moment Dr. Setzer met Debo, he knew he “had the ‘it’ factor”. The 7-year-old Pit Bull was emaciated and suffering from a variety of ailments including severe ear and eye infections, hookworms, and heartworm disease.
Despite his obvious discomfort, Debo was full of joy and love. The kind of dog that “comes in and the whole room lights up.”
Sadly, his owners could not afford the multiple treatments he needed to get well. They asked Dr. Setzer to euthanize him – but the kindhearted vet had other plans for Debo.
“He just kind of came in and the whole staff just fell in love with him,” Setzer said. “He leaned up against me and he was really sweet, rubbed up against me and I just loved him right away.”
Dr. Setzer is the owner/operator of Lesslie Animal Hospital in Rock Hill, SC. He is no stranger to rescuing dogs in need, having saved his own pooch Snoop from the brink of euthanasia. The three-legged pup is now a beloved member of his family and the hospital’s unofficial mascot.
Dr. Setzer saw Debo’s will to live and convinced his owners to sign him over to the clinic.
“They paid us a small portion to kind of help with his medical bills and then we called Carolina Big Hearts Big Barks Rescue to come in and help us out.”
The group placed Debo in foster care and he began an extensive routine of medications, treatments and frequent visits to his fans at Lesslie Animal Hospital.
Thanks to Dr. Setzer and his team, Debo is almost unrecognizable from the skinny, swollen-faced pooch they met on that first fateful day.
“Each time I see him he goes up a level… he talks more, the tail seems to be wagging a lot harder,” Setzer said.
Unfortunately, Debo still needs quite a bit of veterinary attention, including a double ear ablation – a surgical procedure that involves removing the ear canals. He also needs to be neutered and treated for heartworms.
Big Heart Rescue has raised over $1,200 for Debo, but they hope to raise an additional $2,700 to cover his upcoming procedures. A YouCaring page has been created to gather donations.
He may have a long road ahead, but Dr. Setzer is confident that Debo’s future will be bright.
“My ultimate goal is to get him to a healthy state and get him into a home with hopefully at least two or three children, wife and a husband that they really love him and treat him as part of the family,” Setzer said. “That’s what he needs. He’s craving that and I think once he gets that he’s going to be just fine.”