Every day we come across dozens of stories about abandoned or sheltered animals being given a second chance at life after being on the brink of death, but the story of how doctors saved Bishop the German Sheppard's life is like no other.
The 7-year-old dog became extremely ill while living in a shelter in Chicago. When his condition started to worsen, he was taken to a veterinarian, who found stones in his bladder.
The vet informed staff at the Chicago Care and Animal Control that Bishop will require surgery to remove the stones, but the procedure would set them back $7,000. Unfortunately, the shelter couldn't afford to cover this expense, so they scheduled an appointment to euthanize him a few days later.
That's when the Wisconsin-based Woof Gang Rescue of Racine stepped up to the plate.
"They're not disposable to us and if we have the option to save them, we're going to do it," Jodie Hoffman-Ruffalo, executive director of the organization, told WISN-TV.
The organization heard the shelter's plea, and decided to take matters into their own hands, and help Bishop get the treatment he needed.
Woof Gang Rescue found a potential adopter, but upon further examination, veterinarians found that Bishop's condition was worse than they initially thought. Turns out, the bladder stones made their way to his penis bone, which made it impossible to break or remove.
The only options left were to either put the dog down or perform a "sex change" operation.
Of course, Woof Gang Rescue opted for the latter option in order to save the ill dog's life.
"Basically, you're rerouting the entire system of the dog, so a dog that would pee normally forwards, will now pee backwards," Hoffman-Ruffalo explained.
The emergency surgery was risky, long and expensive, but Hoffman-Ruffalo believes that "if the procedure wasn't done, he [Bishop] would have died."
Thankfully, the operation was successful. Bishop is now named "Bishy," and is said to be doing well.
Despite the efforts the rescue organization put towards helping Bishy, people are still angry at them for the amount of money they paid to treat the canine.
"It's enraging, and heartbreaking because you instantly get so mad because people like that that don't have that understanding I urge to get involved with a rescue," she said.
A follow-up procedure is required to remove the remaining stones in Bishy's bladder, but in the meantime, Hoffman-Ruffalo is in search for another adopter.
We hope Bishy finds a forever home soon!