Steamboat Springs A family's dog is recovering from a gunshot wound, but a second pet still remains missing from that November evening, the dog's owner said Tuesday.
A dog belonging to Chris Sachs and her family was shot on the evening of Nov. 1. Sachs believes the family's second dog, Luna, was also shot.
"Whoever shot Bear also shot Luna and did a more thorough job," Sachs said. "She was a great dog. I really miss her."
Although Luna is still missing, Bear, a husky mix, is recovering from a gunshot wound from close range.
The bullet entered Bear's chin and exited through one of his shoulders. When Bear arrived at the family home just after 8 p.m., the wound was fresh, Sachs said.
Because of this, Sachs believes Bear was shot close to the family's home on Huckleberry Lane.
"Right after it happened, I did not think he would make it," she said.
Sachs' neighborhood does have a history of unexplained pet cruelty. This past summer, one cat was shot with a pellet gun and two others mysteriously disappeared.
After the shooting, Sachs took Bear to the Mt. Werner Veterinary Hospital, where he underwent two hours of surgery.
The dog would spend three days at the hospital until he was allowed to return home.
"At first, he was skittish," Sachs said of Bear, who is almost 2 years old. "But now he is doing really well. I have taken him running and snowshoeing. He is happy to get back outside that is for sure."
When the shooting occurred, Sachs was informed that Bear might have trouble with balance and hearing, but the dog has shown no problems, she said.
"The vet was surprised at how well he is recovering," she said. "The incision is pretty much healed. I thought he might be snappy, but he has been real friendly and sweet."
Sachs reported the shooting to the Steamboat Springs Police Department, but it has not developed any leads.
"It was pretty difficult to determine where Bear was at," she said. "It was snowing that night, and I tried to follow a trail of blood as far as I could."
The two pets ran off after they were accidentally let out of the backyard of the family's home that afternoon.
Sachs is hopeful that Luna, a Siberian Husky who has one blue eye and one brown eye, will come home.
"Bear is the family's dog," said Sachs, who has two daughters, ages 9 and 7. "Luna was kind of my dog."
This is not the first time Luna has disappeared. A couple of years ago, the pet was picked up by another person. The family was able to get the dog back from the person when they saw the dog in town.
"Huskies have a tendency to run off, but Luna has always returned home," she said of the pet the family had for three years. "I always have hope she will return, but I have to be realistic about it. It has been almost a month."
Recently, the family took in a 10-month-old husky mix, Sammy.
"Bear was acting pretty lonely," she said. "He really misses Luna, but he is getting along with the puppy.
"It has been a tough month. It was hard for the kids, but they are doing OK."
Sachs would like to thank the community for their support during this time.
"Everybody in the community has been concerned and supportive," she said. "My friends and everyone have just been wonderful. This is a great town."
To reach Gary E. Salazar call 871-4205 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org