A three-month-old puppy was found on the streets of California hairless and covered in a strange purple dye.
The dog had been picked up as a stray after the Simba’s Paw Dog Rescue was tagged in a post on Facebook, they then took the puppy to a shelter in Fresno.
Though it was clear the poor pup was suffering from a bad case of mange, the strange purple markings on his skin remained a mystery.
Neda Saghafi who runs the dog rescue centre and picked up the purple pup was left stumped by the colourings on his skin.
April 18, 2018. All it took was one picture and my heart knew I needed him in my life. These were the first pictures I saw of Prince. A sweet 3 month old pup was brought into the Fresno shelter CCSPCA like this?? What a mess!!! He had demodex mange and skin infections all over! He was brought into the emergency vet looking like this, the "finders" (who we believe were really the owners) said they put some type of purple medicine on him that stained him We thought maybe he was marked for a bait dog? Poor baby we so uncomfortable. We had to save him! No dog ever deserves this! This was the first day to the road of recovery!!??? #simbaspawdogrescue #princetherescuepit #adoptdontshop #fosteringsaveslives #ourpitpage #pitbullsofinstagram #mangepuppy #pitbullpuppy #puppylove #puppiesofinstagram #pitbulladvocate #pitbullove #rescuepup #savealife #bullymom #spreadtherumer #dontbullymybreed #instapuppy #thedodo #rescuedismyfavoritebreed #mange
Speaking to The Dodo, she said:
At first, I thought it was spray paint, and kids spray-painted him or something like that. Also, when people get puppies for bait dogs, they spray paint them different colours so they can make bets on them – so that’s another thing that popped into my head.
Neda took the pup, who she named Prince, to a vet who had another theory as to where the colour had come from.
They said it’s an old-school medication that they use on farm animals for infections – like cows and chickens and horses. So I guess that people had sprayed him with this, thinking it was going to help him. But it was weird because they’d sprayed a cross on his forehead, and it wasn’t sprayed all over his body – it was just lines randomly all over.
Wherever the purple came from, it didn’t come off easily, and ultimately didn’t disappear until Prince’s fur grew back, which took some time due to the mange.
He had demodex mange, and he had a secondary skin infection. He was covered in scabs, and he was bloody and itchy. If you touched him, it was like you were touching a lizard or snake. He was one of the worst mange cases I’ve ever taken in, and I’ve taken in a lot of mange puppies.
However, after two months of treatment and lots of TLC, Prince had regrown his fur and completely transformed from the purple-stained pup he once was.
He’s now a loving and friendly dog looking for a new home, as Neda only fosters dogs until they’re adopted by new families.
However, while Prince was with Neda, another surprising thing happened to him. Another dog was taken in, picked up from the same area as Prince was, with a striking resemblance to him and a similar case of mange.
I got a message about another dog who was found in the same area. A family took her in, and was basically caring for her and paying her medical needs, but she was living in the boarding facility. So I instantly messaged [the family] and said ‘This looks like a sister to Prince, this has to be the sister’.
Neda fostered the second dog, named Cleo, and now the pair are thick as thieves. Cleo, who’s deaf, follows Prince everywhere and the two are constantly playing with each other.
The two are now looking for their forever homes. If you’re interested in adopting, you can contact Simba’s Paw Dog Rescue here.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.