A dog with deformed legs whose owner abandoned him on the side of the road was rescued by an Ohio animal shelter worker.
Lianne Hughes said she felt a special connection with the dog while working at the animal shelter in Zanesville, Ohio. Hughes began fostering the dog and soon discovered that he was at risk of being put down unless somebody adopted him.
Not willing to let that happen, Hughes stepped in and became his owner, ultimately naming him Quasimodo after the main character in "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" — deformed but full of love.
“I saw him and I just knew I had to help him,” Hughes said. “He's big, he's silly, he doesn't know he's any different. He's just got a heart of gold."
Hughes started a GoFundMe campaign to help pay for surgery to fix Quasimodo’s legs, and ultimately ended up raising over $4,000 for her beloved pet. The surgery fused together Quasimodo’s wrists and enabled him to walk on all four paws.
“Even people that don't meet him want to help him immediately, just seeing his pictures, his story,” Hughes said.
After the surgery in May, the Pittsburgh Aviation Animal Rescue Team (PAART) reached out and offered to fly Quasimodo to Hughes’ new home in New Jersey on a private plane.
“Generally, when someone finds us, we have to say no to these kinds of missions,” PAART co-founder Jonathan Plesset said. “But my partner and I, there was no way we couldn't do this.”
Hughes said her dog will soon be able to run outside and enjoy the freedom that his surgery has allowed him to have.
“You can't not love him,” she said.
Photo Credit: Daily Mail