The dog who miraculously survived an apparent leap from over the side of the BQE is being reunited with his owner this evening. And a new witness tells us that initial reports about the dog being thrown from the overpass were not accurate.
The young pitbull, who was dubbed "Meeker" by the vets at the Cobble Hill facility who treated him, suffered severe injuries after witnesses saw the pooch sail over the highway's guardrail, fall 30 feet and land on Meeker Avenue below. Witnesses said it appeared the dog had been hurled from a car window, based on the way he flew head over tail from the road.
But according to vets at the VERG in Cobble Hill, Meeker's owner says his dog, whose actual name is Wookie, slipped from his collar at Bayard Street and Graham Avenue on Tuesday, and ran away at full speed. Wookie's owner, Oliver Rivera, spent the day on his bike searching for his pet, and filed a report with the Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals.
It wasn't until Wednesday that Rivera saw coverage of the dog that survived its tumble from the BQE, first reported by Gothamist.
An investigation is being conducted into whether Wookie was thrown from the BQE, but witness Sarah Hart offers the following account:
I was actually in a taxi on the BQE Tuesday evening when the taxi driver pointed out a dog running full tilt along the side of the expressway. Without warning he leaped over the concrete partition to the 30-foot-drop. We were shocked—and certain he was dead on impact.
Of course, I don't know if he was running from something, some other abuse, and he certainly seemed crazed, but no human actually tossed a dog off the BQE in this instance.
Though Wookie will survive, he still needs to be patched up before he can return home: He has an injured leg, some broken teeth and a potentially collapsed lung, which could require surgery. Luckily for Rivera, the non-profit group Positive Tails had already committed to footing the bill. "We're not going to go back on that now," said Maria Moss, VERG's director of communications.
Asked whether Wookie would be alright returning to an owner from which he escaped, Moss explained that an investigation is underway. "We're going to make sure we find out what's going before he leaves," she said, adding that "this stuff happens to lots of people."