Story of Eugene dog born with facial deformity goes viral
EUGENE, Ore. – The story of a deformed dog in Eugene has gone viral.
Millions of people around the world are talking about Picasso, the dog who was born with a rare facial deformity.
Right now, Picasso and his brother, Pablo, both believed to be pit bull corgi mixes, are staying at Luvable Dog Rescue in Eugene.
Although Picasso may be internet-famous, he wasn't always seen as a masterpiece.
According to Luvable staff, Picasso and his brother were going to be put down at Porterville Animal Shelter, a high-kill shelter in southern California -- not because there’s anything wrong with the dogs; the decision was due to overcrowding.
That's before they were saved by Luvable just two weeks ago.
“I fell in love with his face immediately and said, you know, that is just really a shame; we have room for another dog,” said Liesl Wilhardt, Luvable Dog Rescue's executive director.
Picasso’s veterinarian said he was shocked when he saw Picasso for the first time and thought serious surgery might need to be done.
“To be honest with you I’ve never seen a case like this before,” said Dr. Jason Kimball, owner of Edgewood Animal Clinic. “I would call it a congenital defect of his maxilla, meaning his upper jaw was deformed at birth.”
Kimball said after further examination, he realized Picasso’s misaligned upper jaw was nothing to be worried about.
“He's eating wonderfully, he has no infection, he has no problems from his mouth,” said Dr. Kimball.
Dr. Kimball said there’s just one tooth in Picasso’s mouth that is causing minor discomfort.
“He should not be in any kind of pain. The only thing that's going on is he has a tooth that's digging into the bottom of his mouth because it's not where it should be,” said Wilhardt.
Wilhardt said Picasso will have the problem tooth removed, but the dental work could cost up to a thousand dollars.
“We're a nonprofit and we accept donations," Willhardt said, "and we've had people literally from all over the world sending in donations to help with Picasso’s surgery, so we're so grateful,” said Wilhardt.
Luvable also has a medical fund, primarily thanks to donations. They often rescues special needs dogs who need emergency surgery.
Wilhardt said since Picasso and his brother arrived at Luvable, they’ve been thriving. He and his brother are really social, friendly, and eager to please.
Picasso even has a girlfriend at the shelter named Soy, a terrier-poodle mix that sees Picasso for more than his good looks.
Picasso and his brother will be adopted out together. They've received interest from all over the world, but Luvable Dog Rescue will be officially accepting applications in about a month.
They say they need to get to know the dogs a little more first to make sure Picasso doesn’t have any additional health problems.
Wilhardt says the staff at Luvable Dog Rescue is thrilled at the attention Picasso is getting, but would like to urge the public not to forget about the other one-of-a-kind dogs that are up for adoption at the rescue shelter.
You can follow Picasso and his brother's journey to adoption by visiting Luvable Dog Rescue's online accounts: