MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – A dog once rescued from a Miami-Dade County shelter found himself back there four months later no longer wanted and this time suffering life-threatening injuries after being shot by a Miami Gardens police officer.
The dog was just rescued again by a woman willing to foster him and get him the medical help he needs.
An unstable home his entire life is perhaps what has the mastiff-mix, named Janko, in the condition he is in now, recovering after being shot at least twice by the officer
"Apparently, the dog got out of his owner's home (and) got into someone else's yard," Jennifer Diliz, who rescued Janko from the shelter, said. "When those people came to their home, they couldn't get into their own house because, I guess, Janko thought he was protecting his home. He didn't really realize where he was, I'm guessing."
Janko's story dates back to January when he was brought to Miami-Dade County Animal Services as a stray.
He spent two months there before getting adopted in March.
He got out of his family's home last Saturday and lunged at a responding police officer who was trying to protect himself.
"He's really lucky to be alive, because one of the wounds went right through his neck and out through his mouth. (It) broke his tongue in half -- just a mess," Diliz said.
"I think he's very fearful and I think he does have some aggression issues, potentially, but we don't know the origin, the root, the cause," veterinary surgeon Chris Potanas said.
Janko was brought back to the shelter and was rescued days later by Diliz.
"The shelter did contact the owners. The owners currently want nothing to do with the dog. They basically said, 'You know, we don't want anything to do with him. We're surrendering him.' So unfortunately, that's kind of some of the people we have in our town," Diliz said.
Janko will remain in the animal hospital for at least eight to 12 weeks.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Diliz with Janko's medical bills that are expected to exceed $7,000.