The 15-month-old chocolate pit bull mix was found on the porch of a South Carolina resident who called 911 after seeing what horrible shape she was in.
“I have a dog that’s here at my house that I found and the dog’s mouth is taped shut with electrical tape, tongue hanging out its mouth, bleeding, and his tongue is completely black,” a 911 caller said. “I just don’t know what to do.”
She was taken to Charleston Animal Society, who got her immediate medical attention. The blood flow had been completely cut off from her tongue, making the situation quite delicate. When the tape was removed, Caitlyn screamed in excruciating pain.
Caitlyn needed surgery on her badly lacerated cheek, numerous laser surgeries for facial scarring, hyperbaric oxygen treatments, and surgery on a wounded salivary gland. Cold laser therapy and the oxygen treatments greatly reduced the amount of tissue loss from her tongue damage.
Caitlyn overcame her horrific treatment to become a canine ambassador for abuse victims, and her story has inspired cities nationwide to harsher punishments against animals.
She’s been featured on magazine covers and even posed with Charleston firefighters for their 2016 and 2017 calendars, the proceeds of which go to CAS’ medical fund. On May 3rd, $160,000 was raised during CAS’ Lowcountry Giving Day, partly because of Caitlyn’s presence. And most recently, she was the guest of honor at Caitlyn’s Anti-Cruelty Fund’s gala, which raised another $75,000.
Much of this is possible thanks to the wonderful foster family that has been caring for Caitlyn since last June. She loves playing and snuggling with her foster siblings – canine and human, and going for five-mile runs with her mom. When the trial for her abuser is finished this summer, she will no longer be a foster dog, but a forever dog.
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