Chatham Animal Rescue and Education, Inc.
Happy Endings (561 - 562 of 562)
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Dallas: A Concrete to Carpet Story (March 2001)
Dallas: A Concrete to Carpet Story (March 2001)

There he sat. Not quite a year old yet, and tied to an old disabled car on a concrete pad. Dallas was quite a handsome fellow, and very smart, but no one seemed to appreciate that anymore. When he was just a little pup, his people put a collar on him, but had forgotten to make the collar bigger as he grew. It was now embedded in his neck, and was pretty painful.

Two very special women who lived nearby saw Dallas, realized what was happening, and immediately took him to the veterinarian who surgically removed the collar, stitched his neck, and neutered him while she was at it.The neighbors paid to have all of Dallas' medical work done. When they returned him to the owners and asked if they might find a new home for him, the owner refused, and again, Dallas was tied out on that concrete pad. The neighbors visited him daily to bring him water, and even brought him a doghouse so he wouldn't have to sit out in the hot sun and bad weather.

Time passed, and the neighbors continued to plead with the owner to release him so he could be placed in a loving home. Finally, the owner agreed. These wonderful neighbors, who are surely angels in disguise, called CARE and arranged for Dallas to be placed in foster care while he awaited a new home. Dallas fit right in to his foster family, and got along just great with all the other pets there. Everyone loved him, and he really enjoyed spending time with his foster family.

On his first visit to Adoption Day at PetSmart, Dallas stole the show. He was by far the most handsome guy there, and was certainly the most congenial! Several families were interested in adopting him and it was certain that he'd have a new 'forever home' by the end of the day. Just a few minutes before packing up to leave PetSmart that day, a very nice lady strolled by with her young son, David. It was love at first sight! David kneeled down by Dallas, put his arms around him, and we all knew it was a perfect match. The next day, Dallas went to David's house to meet the rest of his new family. Dallas is now a very special member of a wonderful family who all love him very much.

Dallas certainly came a long way from that hard concrete pad thanks to his own very special angels!
'Sophie': Greek for Wisdom (February 2001)

We named her Sophie, from the Greek word for wisdom, because we knew we had none.

The Animal Control officer called us and left a message on our voice mail. She had heard we rescued dachshund mixes, and this dog was on 'death row.' Could we come?

It took my husband, Louie, and me fifteen minutes to get there.

We went to the back of the shelter and rang the buzzer. A frazzled young woman let us in, and led us to a little, starved, obviously dachshund/beagle mix, black and tan, scruffy pup, with a perpetual squint. She was gentle and hopeless, except to us.

We gave an immediate 'yes' to the officer, who told us how grateful she was to be able to save one more dog. Her eyes swimming with tears, she told us that she was the one who's job it was to euthanize the dogs. She wondered if God would forgive her, because she didn't want to kill a single dog. Surely God would understand that she was doing the 'dirty work' of those who were not responsible enough to spay and neuter their pets. I put my arms around her and told her I was certain God understood.

Because of state law, we had to wait five days before we could pick Sophie up. We made arrangements with our vet and bought her a crate and all the other pet things that she would need. The day arrived, snowy and cold, but my husband made the trek for Sophie, and took her to the vet for shots and an exam. The spay would take place three weeks later, to givethe Parvo shot time to immunize her. There was nothing else remarkable, except that Sophie was either coming into or out of heat. She came home to an excited foster family.

Sophie scooted around terrified, squint-eyed, and unsocialized. She had food issues with the other dogs, but was otherwise gentle and scared. We were certain that with love, patience, non-violent discipline, food and rest, she would 'come around.'

We had no idea of the things to come.

The next day, we discovered she had tape worms. The vet was pretty sure that she had never been treated. Wire worms were also detected. All three dogs had to be treated.

On Wednesday, we noticed that Sophie sneezed a lot. By Sunday, she was coughing, and Happy Dog, my precious mini-dachshund was wheezing, sneezing, and running a fever. Our adoptee, Jesse, an Australian heeler-shepherd cross, was experiencing a running nose and drooled all over everything.

Happy was running a fever! I turned from a thoughtful, intelligent, even educated woman, into a hysterical 'Please God, Don't Let Him Die!' nut. A very kind, tired, patient vet told me to 'come on down,' and she diagnosed 'kennel cough.' Sophie was the carrier. Again, all three dogs had to be treated.

After another week, we noticed that Sophie's teats were swelling. We were certain that she was pregnant. How far along, no one could guess. That night Sophie went into labor. I was awake with her all night, praying.

The next day, the vet gave us the 'this is going to be expensive to save her or euthanize her' speech. She was in spontaneous abortion, with a life threatening infection. Putting her down would be the wise thing to do, but then remember, we named her 'Sophie' because we have no wisdom.

It's been ten days and Sophie will have her stitches out tomorrow. She'll take her last antibiotic tonight.

Right now, Sophie is in her crate lounging atop her 'Beauty and the Beast' blanket. We think it's appropriate for such a beautiful and valuable dog.
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