On Friday the 17th January 1997, a stray dog named Zippy was almost skinned alive in an accident. Zippy is the luckiest mongrel in town after a horrific road accident nearly skinned him alive. Staff at the Veterinary Health Centre in Blackburn feared the worst after the dog was hit by two cars in Harwood Road. Something sharp under one car sliced him open from his neck to his back leg.
Vet David Higginson was amazed when he examined the yellow cross-breed and discovered no serious damage had been done. The dog was christened Zippy by nurse Lindsey Pilkington after she spent several hours stitching him back together. Despite having more than 80 stitches, Zippy was soon back on four legs and was keen to play with staff at the surgery.
He had no collar or tags and the staff were trying to trace his owners. Mr Higginson said: "When the dog was brought in he looked in a terrible way. There is a cut running from his neck down his chest across the stomach and finishing at the back leg. There must have been something sharp under the car which acted like a knife and sliced the dog open."
Although the wound was the biggest ever treated by the vet, no internal organs were damaged. He added: "We couldn't believe it when we examined the dog. He has been very lucky to survive. But if there had been some form of identification it would have helped us a lot. We have to make a lot of decisions in cases like these we prefer to talk to owners before taking any action."
Mr Higginson has urged owners to buy identification tags or electronic chips which can be implanted into the animal. The electronic tags last a lifetime and cost just £20.
Lancashire Evening Telegraph, Friday 17 January 1997.