HARBISON CANYON, Calif. (KGTV) - A dog that nearly died saving an East County teen from a rattlesnake continues to recover from the encounter.
“Always happy. Just been a happy dog,” said his owner, 19-year-old Alex Loredo.
Six months later, 7-year-old Marley is starting to feel like his old self.
“He's getting better every day, and he’s as curious as ever,” he said.
It was that curiosity, along with his protective instincts, that saved the day that June morning.
When Loredo walked out the door of his home in Harbison Canyon, he heard a loud rattle. About a foot away, under a table, was a foot-and-a-half long rattlesnake.
“But before I could even turn, Marley had run between us. Marley basically pushed me out of the way … barks a few times at the snake,” he said back in June.
The snake lunged at Marley twice, biting him on the tongue and lip, before slithering away.
Loredo rushed him to the vet, where Marley needed four doses of antivenin. His condition became dire, but two days later, he turned the corner.
The vet feared Marley's tongue would have to be amputated, but that also began to heal.
“It's pretty inspirational. You wouldn't think a dog would be able to be so strong,” Loredo said.
Half a year later, Marley's recovery is coming along. He's now eating solid foods and drinking water by himself, after months of getting water through a syringe.
But Marley is still tired a lot.
“I can definitely tell he’s had a lot more trouble walking and running,” Loredo said.
Marley's large vet bill was covered by a GoFundMe campaign, as people rallied to support the heroic dog. It raised more than $13,000.
“Definitely would not have been able to afford the medical expenses," he said. "Just want to say thank you."
Loredo is reserving his biggest thank you for his best friend.
“I'm in awe of what he did and just grateful for what he did for me … Marley is my hero,” he said.
Loredo is hopeful Marley will make a full recovery in the next few months.