DAVIS, CALIFORNIA—A veterinarian has some good news about a dog from the Philippines that became an international hero after losing its muzzle in saving two young girls.
Gina Davis, a veterinarian with the University of California at Davis, told the San Francisco Chronicle that the dog named “Kabang” appears to have beaten the cancer it was suffering from.
Kabang, a 2-year-old female street dog whose name means “spotty,” still faces treatment for heartworms in her arteries before she can have the gaping wound on her face closed.
She got that wound when she threw herself between a speeding motorcycle and two young girls in Zamboanga City on Dec. 14 last year.
The girls—Dina Bunggal, 11, daughter of Kabang’s master, and cousin Princess Diansing, 3—were unharmed, but the dog lost the top of her muzzle in the crash.
News of Kabang’s heroism attracted international attention and offers of help to restore her muzzle.
A nurse from New York state led a fundraising campaign to bring Kabang to the United States.
Despite her injury, Kabang gave birth to six puppies in April.
After thousands of dollars had been raised, Kabang arrived at UC Davis in October and was prepared for the operation.
But veterinarians found that Kabang had tumors and heartworms and these needed to be treated first.
The veterinarians put Kabang through chemotherapy and they announced on Wednesday that they had eliminated her tumors and she only needed to be treated for heartworms and then she would get the surgery for the restoration of her muzzle.
Surgeons are planning to perform two or three procedures for dental work, extractions and covering exposed roots.
They will then try to close Kabang’s wound and restore nasal functions.
Kabang’s bony structures are currently exposed to air, increasing the chance of infection, Davis said.
Kabang may return to the Philippines in May or June.
The bill for her treatment is expected to top $10,000.
Davis said that despite Kabang’s many conditions, the dog appeared in good spirits.
“She has come through everything very well,” Davis said. “Her appetite is still good. She’s still bright and happy.”—Reports from AP and Inquirer Research
Originally posted at 6:49 pm | Wednesday, December 26, 2012