Runaway Dog Reunited With Owners

Lassie needs immediate surgery or may lose leg

By Anthony Ponce
|  Wednesday, Dec 19, 2012  |  Updated 5:47 PM CDT
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Lassie, a Labrador mix who darted around vehicles on the Kennedy Expressway on Monday, is back home with her family but needs surgery to keep her leg. Anthony Ponce reports.

Lassie, a Labrador mix who darted around vehicles on the Kennedy Expressway on Monday, is back home with her family but needs surgery to keep her leg. Anthony Ponce reports.

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Sky 5: Dog Runs Loose on Kennedy Expressway

The animal, with an apparently injured hind leg, darted around vehicles on the Interstate near West Diversey Avenue.
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A dog found roaming the Kennedy Expressway Monday has been reunited with her owners, but she has some health challenges ahead.

Lassie, a three-and-a-half year-old Labrador mix, has been through a terrifying ordeal since her family lost her on Saturday.

"Usually, she's happy, running around, jumping, she's always happy. Right now, she can't even get up," said Janette Perez, one of Lassie's owners.

The family was taking Lassie to Delta Animal Hospital in West Town for a routine grooming Saturday, when they say she got scared, twisted her way off her leash, then took off running.

"We got the truck, we tried to find her. We lost her," said Perez.

Lassie was spotted from NBC 5's helicopter Monday afternoon, terrified, struggling along the Kennedy Expressway after being hit by a car that shattered her hind leg.

"She didn't know where to go. She was scared," Perez said.

Lassie and her family are now reunited after Konca saw the NBC 5 footage and posted it to the Amercian Animal Rescue Society's Facebook page. Once the footage was up, it was spotted by two members of Lost Dogs Illinois, who were able to connect it with a Craigslist ad posted by Lassie's family.

But even though Lassie's home, she's nearly immobile, in severe pain, and her family is $1,500 short of being able to pay for a $3,000 surgery to repair Lassie's left hind leg.

"She has road rash from being hit by the car, she has a severely broken leg, she has all her ligaments torn as well, so she definitely needs to go to a specialist," said Joanna Konca, Director of the American Animal Rescue Society.

If she doesn't get the surgery soon, Lassie may wind up losing her hind leg.

To help Lassie get her surgery, you can send donations to the American Animal Rescue Society at P.O. Box 3511, Oak Brook, IL 60522-3511. Or visit AARSociety.org. Checks should include "For Lassie" in the memo line.

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