“It was almost like lifting a carcass. There was nothing to him.” Those are the heartbreaking words of Katrina Campbell who rescued a dog, now fittingly named Trooper, from a truly dire situation.
She was drinking along on a cold Missouri winter night when she saw something too awful to believe on the side of the road. She pulled over in the frigid weather and got out of her car to investigate. Much to her horror, what she thought she saw was all too real: a dog on the brink of death.
The dog had been thrown away like a piece of trash. He was covered in his own feces and urine, which were burning his skin. At first, Katrina thought that he was run over. She rushed him to the vet in hopes that she’d gotten to him in time.
The vet revealed the heartbreaking truth: Someone shot Trooper, which left him paralyzed. To add insult to injury, the pup was also hit in the head with what the doctor believed was a hammer.
“I got down on my knees, kissed him on the head and said a prayer over him,” Campbell recalled of her first moments with Trooper. Everyone who crossed his path was in his corner. Rescuers and vets worked around the clock to help him get better, even if it was a long shot.
What makes this case unique is that the person who did this to a defenseless animal was actually caught. The director of Missouri K-9 friends set out on a mission to find the monster who did this, and the search led to 56-year-old Jason Edward Hampton.
Mandy Ryan, the director, called Mr. Hampton directly and he had a shockingly easy time admitting that he did, indeed, hurt the dog.
In her words, “He answered the phone, I introduced myself, and I asked about Trooper, and he immediately stated, ‘well, I’ll tell you right now it was me.'” “I shot that dog, and I hit him in the head with a hammer.”
While laws are fuzzy in Missouri, he was charged $10,000 for his crime and was charged with second-degree animal abuse.
As of now, Trooper is still on the mend. The shelter has received dozens of adoption applications for him and when he’s ready, we’re confident that they’ll place him in the right home. You really are a trooper, big guy!