Alaskan Dog Recovering Quickly After First Lockjaw Surgery

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – One day ago, a severely injured dog couldn’t even open his jaw. Now, the German Shepherd flown to Sacramento for surgery, is doing something he’s hasn’t done for months, smile.

Thor underwent surgery Friday afternoon at VCA Animal Hospital in Rancho Cordova to correct severe jaw damage.

Thor was found back in November and brought to Arctic German Shepherd Rescue in Fairbanks, Alaska. He had severe injuries including a locked jaw. He was also severely underweight and officials believe he had survived by pushing bits of food into his mouth with his paw.

“He weighed 46 pounds, and he should weigh close to a hundred pounds, and he was in below zero weather,” Thor’s caretaker Teresa Downing said.

Thor, before surgery. (credit: Arctic German Shepherd Rescue)

Thor, before surgery. (credit: Arctic German Shepherd Rescue)

After searching for a surgeon who could help Thor, the rescue group found the same hospital that saved the life of Bodie, a Sacramento K9 officer who was shot in the jaw and leg while on duty earlier this year.

On Friday, surgeons were able to get Thor’s mouth open three inches after removing several bone fragments and four teeth.

Thor with a ball in his mouth! (credit: Arctic German Shepherd Rescue Group)

Thor with a ball in his mouth! (credit: Arctic German Shepherd Rescue Group)

Saturday morning, the Arctic German Shepherd Rescue group posted several pictures of Thor. One shows him with they call a smile, the other trotting down the street with a ball in his mouth. Two things Thor has not been able to do for months if ever.

Veterinarians will continue to work on Thor’s mouth during the next few days in order to give him more range of motion.

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