DETROIT, Mi - A 6-month-old puppy was rescued from a sewer on Detroit's west side - dehydrated, emaciated and suffering from demodicosis, a skin disease caused by a small mite, according to the Michigan Humane Society.
The prognosis of the puppy, named Leo and believed to be a Shepherd mix, is guarded, the Michigan Humane Society said.
The puppy was found Tuesday afternoon in the 12000 block of Manor by a passerby walking her pet who heard the dog's yelps from a nearby alley, a news release issued today said.
"We don't know how long he was down there or exactly how he got there," Chris Ouwerkerk, the MHS rescue driver who came to the puppy's aid, said in the release.
"You can see every rib. He obviously hadn't eaten in days or weeks. He's not in great shape, but he was definitely happy to be out of there, and we're glad a kind person contacted us in time."
MHS rescue personnel who responded to the scene found an open manhole cover and the dog trapped several feet down at the bottom of the sewer, the release said. Leo is being held as a stray animal for four days, in accordance with state law, at the MHS Detroit Center for Animal Care.
Though Leo looks to be a medium-sized dog and is 6 months old, he weighs just 11 pounds. Officials said he is suffering from a weakened immune system as result of his emaciation and dehydration, placing him at high risk for diseases like parvovirus or a serious infection.
"The MHS veterinary team will continue to care for and monitor Leo's condition as he gains weight and hopefully recovers from his ordeal," the release said. "However, Leo's condition is very serious and will require significant medical care over the coming weeks."