Emaciated puppy rescued from 12 foot manhole in Detroit - New York News

Emaciated puppy rescued from 12 foot manhole in Detroit

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Leo was rescued from a manhole on Detroit's west side. (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com) Leo was rescued from a manhole on Detroit's west side. (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com)
DETROIT (WJBK) -

"He has demodex mange, which is treatable, so we're treating that, and pretty soon he'll look like a normal dog, full fur," said Chris Ouwerkerk from the Michigan Humane Society.

Leo is tired and incredibly weak, but you wouldn't know it.  He wouldn't sit still and his tail never stopped moving, happy to be above ground.

Leo was trapped in a twelve foot manhole on Detroit's west side and no one knows for how long.

"He was whimpering.  Other than that, I looked in there, it was dark, I had to take my phone and flash a picture to see where he was at," Ouwerkerk explained.

He rushed to the 12000 block of Manor when a good Samaritan called it in, but the rescue wasn't easy.

"Got out there and couldn't even see the manhole because even when I was looking for it, you couldn't see it.  There was a ladder to get down there, but it was all rusted out.  So I didn't want to try and fall in with him and need rescuing myself."

Leo was severely emaciated, suffering from dehydration.  All of his ribs were visible, and he hadn't eating in days and maybe weeks.

Ouwerkerk said the rescue was time sensitive.  He used a control stick to pull him to safety.

"Got it around his neck and waiting for him to put his arm through, so the loop would go underneath his arm and around his shoulders, and as soon as he did that, I tightened it up and started lifting him out," he said.  "Soon as I got him out, his whole butt started wagging.  It wasn't just the tail."

Leo is on a special diet so he won't get sick and, for now, he won't let his rescuer out of his sight.

"I guess we may have bonded a little bit, so he's pretty cool."

It will still be a little while before Leo is able to be adopted, but if you just have to have him in your home and you want to call because you have some questions about him, you can call the Michigan Humane Society at (313) 872-3400.

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