Vet performs free surgery on bomb-sniffing K9

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - A bomb-sniffing K9 with the Annapolis Fire Department had surgery on Wednesday to help get him back to work.

Rudy has been on the force for eight years. A few months ago his handler, Lt. Kelly Ruth, noticed a limp and learned Rudy would need surgery that would cost up to $5,000. Chesapeake K-9 Fund started raising money for Rudy's surgery. In 12-hours, the community donated around $1,000. 

Click here to see photos of the surgery

"We put out a call to action on Facebook and literally I want to say in less than two hours, Doctor Canapp found our tag and he and his team at Project GO stepped forward," said Wendy Oliver, president & co-founder of the Chesapeake K-9 Fund.

World-renowned orthopedic veterinarian, Dr. Sherman Canapp from Jessup, volunteered to perform the surgery for free as well as cover associated costs for x-rays and rehabilitation. 

"Whether it's looking for bombs, or explosives or drugs or finding missing people, it's just incredible. So when they're injured, it's really our job, especially within our veterinarian profession to do whatever we can to help these animals," said Dr. Canapp, co-principal and Chief of Staff at Veterinary Orthopedic & Sports Medicine Group (VOSM).

Rudy is expected to recover in four to five months and should be able to work another year or two.

“We exercise them a lot. They work very hard so they don't have a chance to just sit around and get old and get fat. They want to work that's what makes them happy so I'm sure once we get through this surgery and get him back up running, he'll be a happy dog once again,” said Captain Caroll Spriggs with the City of Annapolis Fire Department Bomb Squad.

And when retirement finally comes, Rudy will be able to relax comfortably beside his partner.

"It's only right to get him back healthy again that's the most important thing," said Lt. Kelly Ruth, Rudy's handler.

Rudy's handler found out about the donation last week on Rudy's birthday.

Project GO is able to fund surgeries through private donations. If you'd like to contribute to their organization, click here.

The $1,000 donated by the community will go towards helping with Rudy's post-surgery recovery. If you'd like to donate to the Chesapeake K-9 Fund, click here.

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