09/26/2011 07:10 pm ET | Updated Nov 26, 2011

Deformed Puppy Rescued And Recovering (VIDEO)

What began as a tale of animal cruelty may have a heart-warming ending.

A deformed puppy named Harper was found by Erica Daniel, 26, who saw the dog squirming in a garbage bag at a puppy sale.

A man selling puppies outside of a Save-A-Lot store in Florida reluctantly handed her the puppy, which she promptly took to a vet, according to NBC News.

Born with a condition known as "swimmer puppy syndrome," Harper was unable to stand on her front legs or even lift her head. The puppy was scheduled to be euthanized, but Daniel decided to give her one night with a loving home. “I had to show her what it was like to be loved," she told Today.

With some massage, Harper started to show more strength and movement, reports the Daily Mail.

Daniel got a second opinion from another vet, who found that "the rumors of Harper’s demise were greatly exaggerated. Her organs were functioning just fine, and she had no heart murmur or serious brain abnormalities. The medical conditions she did have required treatment -- but nothing that warranted putting her to sleep."

Harper is now 11 weeks old and on the road to recovery. Daniel said the pup is nearly ready for adoption.

Earlier this month, a puppy was rescued after falling into a crack created by the Texas drought. Bob Barker and PETA are currently petitioning the White House to create a spay/neuter law in an effort to fight animal overpopulation and the death of millions of animals.

If you would like to be a hero to a puppy, consider adoption. and the ASPCA both offer resources for finding a pet in need of a good home.


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