A dog who was 10 minutes away from being put to sleep by her previous owner before being rescued by the RSPCA is due to star on the small screen tomorrow on Channel 5’s Dog Rescuers show, presented by Alan Davies.

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RSPCA inspector Anthony Joynes was called to a home in Wirral after a member of the public raised concerns about the condition on a German Shepherd dog inside the house. When he got there, the dog’s owner told him that she had a vet appointment in 10 minutes time for the dog to be put to sleep.

When Anthony looked at the dog – named Reo – he saw that she had large open wounds to her ears, jaw and eye, which were believed to have been self-inflicted as a result of being scratching at her face because of an ear infection.

But he did not believe that she should be put to sleep, so her owner signed her over to the RSPCA’s care and Anthony immediately took Reo to a vet to be checked over. Despite her severe condition, the vet believed that with time she would recover.

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“Reo had the most horrific ear infection – it was that bad that she was scratching her face,” said Anthony. “She had a big wound by her ear and had ripped the skin off her bottom jaw. Part of her jaw was missing and her wounds were infected. Thankfully we got there in time.

“Tests showed that her ears and ear canals were severely infected and that she should have been seen by a vet at least six weeks earlier.

“The injuries were so bad that it took us weeks and weeks to get her right again, however we took it one day at a time. It was one of the saddest things I have ever dealt with. Reo actually squirmed on the floor in agony and she had to be sedated to be examined.

“This was an incredibly serious case of prolonged neglect which left Reo in horrific pain. It has been a long road for her but her recovery has been miraculous and today she is a completely different dog.”

Happily, Reo has now made a full recovery and has settled into a new home with Martin and Amanda Corrin, in Eastham, Wirral, who will feature in the show.

Reo’s previous owner was disqualified from keeping animals for life, was sentenced to an 18-week prison sentence suspended for two years, ordered to do 160 hours of unpaid work and to pay £740 costs.

Dog Rescuers presenter Alan Davies said: “The Dog Rescuers goes behind the scenes to see the RSPCA at work rescuing dogs from neglect and abuse.

“It’s sad to see dogs suffering but always a joy when they are nursed back to health and find loving new homes.”

To catch Reo’s story on TV, tune into the Dog Rescuers on Channel 5 at 8pm tomorrow (Tuesday 15 August).

Reo is one of 8,009 dogs rescued by the RSPCA last year – that’s nearly one every hour.

To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit www.rspca.org.uk/give or text LOVE to 87023 to give £3 (Text costs £3 + one standard network rate message).

To rehome a dog like Reo visit our website to find your perfect match.