KELOWNA – She has defied the odds before, but this one she won't come back from—one of the two dogs that survived a horrific attack five months ago has developed terminal cancer and will be euthanized this week.
Sheena is a 10-year-old Rottweiler and one of three dogs subjected to a brutal late night attack with an edged weapon last September. Although she sustained serious trauma to the head, she was saved thanks to the efforts of a local veterinarian.
One-year-old Lola died from loss of blood and Rocky, who was only eight months old, lost an ear in the attack.
Now, just when owners Lyall Grexton and Charlene Wiebe were getting back to normal, they found a growth inside her mouth.
“(The cancer) is on the upper jaw on the left side near the back of the mouth,” Burtch Animal Hospital vet Dr. Jatinder Mundi says. “It’s spreading all through the body.”
He says because of her age, trying to save her with surgery and chemotherapy is impractical.
“She is losing the body weight so we were keeping her on the palliative medicine,” he says. “It’s in her best interest (to euthanize). There is no quality of life there.”
Meanwhile, Grexton and Wiebe are still waiting for some kind of resolution for the attack. They believe the person who attacked their dogs was the same man who, just days prior, assaulted Grexton in a parking lot and on Monday was forbidden by the courts from having any contact with them for 12 months.
Grexton says the court order doesn’t go far enough though and wonders why charges were dropped.
“He was up for the assault and uttering threats,” he says. “The police phoned me last Friday and said the charges had been stayed but I can’t find out why.”
Grexton says knowing the attacker is a free man has them living in fear.
“It just never goes away,” he says. “I still wake up in the middle of the night and can’t go back to sleep. We’re both totally affected by it.”
An appointment to euthanize Sheena is now set for this Friday and Grexton says although they wish there was another option, they know they are doing the right thing for her.
“It’s extremely sad,” he says. “We’ve had her since she was a year old and now we have to say goodbye. I guess we’ll just have to wait for karma because the cops and the courts don’t seem to want to do anything. I wonder if this would be their response if it was a police dog that was attacked.”
Crown counsel refused to comment on why charges were stayed.
Clifford Joseph Robinson is forbidden from contacting either Lyall Grexton or Charlene Wiebe, from attending their homes and places of work, and must keep the peace and be of good behavior for 12 months. If he breaks any of his conditions he will have to pay $500 and could be charged with a criminal offence.
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