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Dog burned in fire on mend, still needs care
Kali, a 4-year-old chocolate Labrador retriever, has her muzzle stroked Thursday by veterinary technician Sandra Dale at the Clermont Veterinary Hospital. The dog is recovering after suffering second- and third-degree burns on over 50 percent of her body after a shed fire Dec. 30.

Even after Kali was badly burned in a shed fire she was trapped in two weeks ago, the 4-year-old chocolate Labrador retriever is described as “a loving girl with a big heart.”

Kali’s owner awoke to barks the morning of Dec. 30 after strong winds knocked over a heat lamp in a shed approximately 20 feet from the owner’s house. Although her owner was able to extinguish the fire on the dog and in the shed, Kali suffered second- and third-degree deep tissue burns on over 50 percent of her body.

“The damage to Kali didn’t first appear too great,” said Sandra Dale, a veterinary technician with Clermont Veterinary Hospital. “She had an obvious burn on her face above her eye, a small spot on her neck and a wound on her left rear leg. We did notice that Kali’s entire back and tail had been singed and that she was extremely reluctant to sit or lie down.”

But after further examination, Dale said the extent of Kali’s injuries became “painfully clear.”

After an hour of plucking charred hairs from Kali’s back, side, ears and tail, the hospital discovered burns on her body that will require months of bandaging, medication and surgeries, of which she has already had two.

Dale said the cost of taking care of Kali is nearly $100 a day.

“Now it’s just a process of daily bandage changes with large amounts of bandage material and burn cream. Kali is still on pain medication and antibiotics as she will have to be until her skin heals,” Dale said.

As she heals, Kali spends her days in the hospital’s front office where she is under constant care and supervision.

“Kali is such a trooper and such a fighter,” Dale said. “She wags her tail every time she sees us and comes running for any kind of treat. She also tries to play with her toys. She carries them around in her mouth a lot of the day.”

Although Dale described Kali’s prognosis as “guarded but good,” the hospital hopes her total healing time will be no more than 12 weeks.

“Through all of this pain, Kali has continued to be a kind, loving animal that trusts us to do our best for her,” Dale said.

Anyone wishing to donate to Kali’s care can call the Clermont Veterinary Hospital at 770-983-7851.

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