MANATEE COUNTY -- A German Shepherd puppy in training to become a Police K-9 has hit a major setback, but his new owners are hoping that he'll soon be healthy enough to serve the community in a different way.
- K-9 puppy in training injured; funds needed
- Zeus injured vertebrae last year
- GoFundMe page for Zeus
Late last year, Zeus was training to become a K-9 Officer when he injured his vertebrae.
He was sent back to his original owner in hopes that he would get diagnosed by a veterinarian and get the help that he needed to recover.
It was when his former handler went to check on him that he discovered Zeus was going to be put down. That’s when the handler forked over his own money and took Zeus home to Manatee County.
The handler contacted Manatee County Search and Rescue and volunteers Alexander and Kristi Hurt agreed to take him in.
“Some people are like, oh it’s just a dog… but to us it’s like a member of our family now,” Kristi said.
The Hurt’s work schedules allow them to tend to Zeus virtually around the clock. They’ve also found him a surgeon who is willing to operate on his injured vertebrae.
“He’ll stumble a lot. He’ll slip and fall, his hind legs will give out from under him,” Alexander described.
Zeus is also underweight, and the Hurt’s are working hard to make sure that little by little he’s getting to a healthy weight.
The couple says that each day Zeus is getting a little bigger and a little stronger, and they are hoping that this is just a small setback in what will be a long and happy life.
They hope that K-9 Zeus will soon be well enough to be a part of the team with Manatee County Search and Rescue.
If you’d like to help Zeus in his journey, you can find his story on his GoFundMe page.