WATERVILLE — A dog that was dragged accidentally behind a truck by its owner for about a mile Sunday will recover from its injuries, officials said.

David Bolduc said that after walking Sophie, a small bichon-frisé, outside his Water Street residence, he slipped the leash over the tow hitch of his vehicle while he did a couple of tasks in his garage. When his wife called him to invite him for lunch at McDonald’s on Kennedy Memorial Drive, he got into his truck and headed off to meet her, without remembering where Sophie was.

“I just forgot about it,” a distraught Bolduc said Tuesday.

According to a report filed by Chris Martinez, animal control officer, the dog was dragged for nearly a mile before the leash came off of the tow hitch near KMD Florist and Gifts.

A little farther up the road, another motorist alerted Bolduc to what had happened, and he rushed back to recover Sophie, who was on her feet on the sidewalk, alongside the road.

The dog suffered injuries that were significant but not life-threatening, including the total loss of patches of skin on an area from its abdomen running to the chest, and on the knuckles of its front paws. The pads of all four paws also suffered injuries.

Bolduc speculated that a larger dog might have been able to slip its leash sooner and escape with less injury.

Bolduc picked Sophie up and tried to take her to the Animal Emergency Hospital on Washington Street, but it was closed. The closest animal hospital that he knew to be open was in Lewiston. He next drove to McDonald’s to ask his wife for help in dealing with the crisis.

“I would like to commend the animal control officer for doing a fine job,” Bolduc said. “He got a hold of the veterinarian and made him open up for me.”

Sophie was admitted to the Kennebec Veterinary Services in Oakland, where Dr. Paul Smith sedated her and treated her injuries.

She remained in the veterinarian’s care until Tuesday, Bolduc said, and was responding positively to antibiotics.

Family members expressed support for Bolduc and concern about his level of distress because of the incident. Bolduc said he was too distraught to talk about the ordeal in detail. No charged were filed against Bolduc.

Martinez said he had seen at least two other such cases while working as an animal control officer in California.

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