One Dogwood Animal Shelter dog is back up for adoption following a hard road of animal abuse. A border collie known as Maverick around the shelter was born on December 3, 2011. His mother was a stray dog that was housed at Dogwood when Maverick was born.


One Dogwood Animal Shelter dog is back up for adoption following a hard road of animal abuse. A border collie known as Maverick around the shelter was born on December 3, 2011. His mother was a stray dog that was housed at Dogwood when Maverick was born.

"Like all the other Dogwood residents, he was loved and cared for by the shelter workers, and was provided with all medical services that he needed so he would be ready to join someone's family as a cherished pet when he became old enough," said one Dogwood official.

On January 30, the staff thought that the day had come. A young family from Ft. Leonard Wood was adopting him, making Maverick one of 120 pets adopted from Dogwood so far in 2012. According to the shelter, adopters are always encouraged to call them if there is any issue with their new pet. Since Dogwood heard nothing from Maverick's new family, they assumed "all was well."

A month later, the shelter received a call from a veterinary hospital asking for Maverick's vaccination history because he had been admitted for x-rays. When a shelter official asked why he needed x-rays, the clinic's staff refused to answer saying, "since the animal no longer belonged to the shelter, it was none of the shelter's business." According to one Dogwood official, the adoption contract states that the shelter can reclaim the animal if there is evidence of neglect or abuse.

With reason to worry the shelter's manager immediately called Maverick's owners, but was unable to get any answers. More conversations continued to confuse the staff since they were receiving conflicting stories. "One clear fact was that Maverick had somehow ended up with both back legs badly broken, requiring surgery," said one Dogwood official.

The community's animal control agency was then contacted and promised the shelter's staff that they would look into the situation. A few days later, Maverick was released from the animal hospital and given back to his adopters. When animal control was contacted again, "The official could not provide information at that point, but asked for patience and trust while the investigation continued."

Not too long after, Dogwood Animal Shelter received the call they had been waiting for. Maverick was being given back to Dogwood and the adopter was being arrested on charges of animal abuse.

The work of the shelter staff had paid off. "They went the extra mile and refused to give up until they got Maverick out of harm's way.  Had they done less, an abuser would still be free to abuse, and who knows what would have become of Maverick."

Maverick is now safe, but still has a reminder of his past, "Although he'd had surgery to repair the broken bones, his hind legs are barely functional and look pretty disfigured." He is currently under the care of a local veterinarian, Dr. Tom Williams.

Maverick is tough and according to shelter staff does not let the pins in his back legs stop him. "For all he has been through he still has love in his heart and holds no grudges against people. He loves the water and playing with toys, gets along with other dogs, kids and cats."

If you think Maverick would be a great fit for your family, call Dogwood Animal Shelter at 573-348-4411. For a video of Maverick, check out lakenewsonline.com.