An appeal for funds to perform surgery on a badly injured German shepherd brought into a small B.C. animal shelter has resulted in an overwhelming outpouring of support from across North America.

Bode was surrendered to the Squamish SPCA by a Good Samaritan earlier this month. It is believed the pup suffered years of attacks from other dogs and beatings at the hands of his owner on a rural Pemberton property, north of Whistler.

The dog’s face was covered in new and scarred bite marks. His ear was partially torn off and he was suffering from a broken femur. The painful injury had never been treated and he couldn’t put any weight on the lame leg.

Shelter staff put out an appeal to the public last week to raise $4,000 to amputate Bode’s leg, and repair his torn ear and broken teeth. Facility manager Marika Donnelly hoped the gentle dog, who cowers if anyone reaches quickly for his collar, could be rehabilitated and homed with a family who could teach him to play and have fun: “To feel love for the first time,” she said.

With a tight budget and scarce resources, Donnelly worried the branch wouldn’t be able to cover Bode’s hefty medical vet bills.

But her concern turned to exhilaration as donations started pouring in to help the injured dog. There has now been $6,600 raised – money not only to pay for Bode’s surgery, but other animals that need attention at the facility.

“We’ve had donations come in from across Canada and all over the U.S. With the extra money we’re going to be able to repair and rebuild his leg instead of amputate it. We can save his leg,” Donnelly said.

The road to recovery will be a long one for Bode. He will undergo surgery on his leg later this week and will remain in a cast for another month.

Donnelly is personally fostering Bode at her home as the big dog learns to socialize with other animals, and stop being afraid of loud noises, and the people around him. He gets along well with her dogs and cats, Donnelly says, and is improving by leaps and bounds every day.

“He’s been so neglected his whole life. But just this weekend he picked up a toy for the first time. It’s a small thing, but for this dog, it’s huge. It’s exciting,” she said.

Bode will be ready for his forever home this fall, and the SPCA has already received offers from families that want him.

“He’s going to make someone a wonderful companion,” Donnelly said. “The spirit of this dog is incredible.”

Donations are being accepted by the Squamish Valley SPCA online here, by calling 604-898-9890, by mail at Squamish Valley SPCA, PO Box 659, Garibaldi Highlands, B.C. V0N 1T0, or in person at the branch, located on Government Road in the Squamish Municipal Works Yard.