Beaten dog leaves WSU vet hospital after successful surgery

By Charlie Powell, College of Veterinary Medicine

Theia-webPULLMAN, Wash. – Theia, the formerly homeless young dog from Moses Lake, Wash., left Washington State University’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital this morning breathing well through her surgically repaired sinuses.

She will return in about four weeks for a follow-up CT scan to ensure tissue is not growing through her mesh-like stent and causing breathing problems to return.

Several weeks ago, she was hit by a car, bludgeoned by a person who may have been attempting a mercy killing and buried alive. Four days later, she made her way to people who recognized her and, eventually, into Sara Mellado’s home and heart for foster care.

Mellado brought Theia to WSU for an initial evaluation that revealed the blows to her head had crushed her sinuses. After two surgeries to remove the blockages and placement of a stent late Friday, a CT scan Sunday revealed the sinuses were open and functioning properly.

Mellado returned to Pullman today to pick up the happy puppy and pay the bills. Charges for the advanced care have reached almost $8,000.

Anticipating this after receiving an estimate last month, Mellado set up a crowd source funding site for Theia’s care: In one month, the appeal attracted gifts of more than $28,000 from more than 800 people around the world.

Mellado has pledged that any funds remaining will be donated back to the WSU College of Veterinary Medicine’s Good Samaritan Fund, which provided the initial funding for Theia’s care. For information about the fund, visit


Sara Mellado, Theia’s caretaker, 253-347-9392,
Charlie Powell, WSU College of Veterinary Medicine public information officer, cell or text 509-595-2017,
Media note: Images and video from the hospital are available at