The Battle for Callie

About 4 months ago, Chain of Hope helped a guy with a white Boxer that he said he had taken in as a stray. She was pretty thin and chained outside 24/7, so we began trying to help this dog and her owner. We got her in and spayed and vaccinated her for free. This guy’s girlfriend also had a dog chained up in the backyard. She refused to have Diamond spayed, so we did not deal with her. Even though we offered the spay for free AND we provide curb service by picking up the animal and bringing them back home, she refused to spay her. Diamond was not a pit or pit mix so there was nothing we could do as far as the law goes, so we left her alone. Her dog didn’t look as thin as the Boxer. We knew with her living on a chain outside 24/7 she was going to get pregnant, but the owner was not receptive.

The Boxer was still thin, so we dropped the guy puppy food every once in awhile. She was not gaining weight, in fact she looked like she had lost weight.   We told the guy she probably needed to be de-wormed. We took 3 days of  Panacur over to him and showed and  explained to him how to give it to her. Again, this was all for free.  We really thought that this would do the trick. She had to have been full of parasites.

Chain of Hope receives about 25 calls a day and we are incredibly busy. We hadn’t been by to check on the white Boxer for awhile. Marilyn and I were going down the street one day when Marilyn recognized the house. We decided to pull over and see how this beautiful girl was doing. We walked around to the backyard and this is what we saw:

We were not happy about this dog’s condition. You can see the look on her face when Marilyn is approaching with food in her hand. She was starving and had no water whatsoever. In  every picture, she has her head down trying to eat the treats we put on the ground. We fed her, gave her a drink and called this into animal control that afternoon.

We were right back over there the next day and the dog was still there. Things were just the same. I called in our confirmation number to check on the case and was told that they hadn’t gotten over there yet. We gave her some food and water and left. We never leave  food and water down for the animal when we’ve called animal control. We give them something to eat and give them a drink and then take the bowls away. We don’t want animal control giving anyone a pass because we were there feeding and watering their dog. We want them to see the same conditions that we see when we go.

When I called later that day, I was told that the officer that went out left a door hanger and closed the case.  And yes, that does mean that he left this poor dog in the yard. We  know for a fact that this girl had no water that day either because we had given her a drink and then removed our bowl. I was not totally surprised  because unfortunately this happens and we have to call animal control back out, which is what I did. I asked them to open a new case at this address and send someone else out.

In the meantime, I had had a call from a supervisor regarding another case and I began telling him that I was very concerned about this particular Boxer.  I told him her story about how long we’d been involved with this animal and what the history had been. He assured me that they would send someone over again.

We went over the next morning and the dog was still there in the same damn situation.  The officer  talked to the owner who told them that they had just rescued this animal as a stray 2 weeks ago and that is why she is still so skinny. Even though I had told the entire history to a supervisor, this officer believed the people and left the dog there again.

May I say unfucking believable???

What does it take to get an animal in this condition out of her hellhole? We were going on our 4th day of trying to get this animal out of here and she was still sitting there. Thank God we were feeding and watering her everyday. Even though we didn’t leave anything, at least we knew that she’d had something to eat and drink that day. I can’t even express to you how infuriating and frustrating this was. This was a battle to get this little starved girl some help. We were checking on this girl everyday and it killed us to have to walk away again and leave her there, waiting for the city to do their job.

After 2 calls into animal control and no help for this dog, I called some police contacts we have and asked for help. I couldn’t even believe that I had to go this far, but we were going to get help for this girl no matter what. The police started calling animal control on behalf of this dog. A KCPD officer had gone out and looked at this dog and he was upset as well. I also sent an email and pictures to the director of animal control, his boss, and our attorney. Thankfully, we finally had some action. The director sent a supervisor over there and he impounded the dog. Finally, Callie was out of there.

I knew not to rest easy though, because I’ve seen things get messed up before-like a neglected dog going back to the owner. I don’t know why officers went over to this house to try and make contact with the owner to explain to him what he had to do to GET THE DOG BACK. I don’t even have words for this. Why was that much effort put into trying to make contact with this neglectful owner so that he could get his dog back? He had clearly demonstrated that he didn’t give a rat’s ass about this girl. I don’t even want to think about what would’ve happened had this dog been given back to this neglectful owner. I thought we’d been in a battle for this little girl, but if she’d gone back to the owner it  would’ve been WW III!!!

The owner never called and they never made contact with him, so the dog went up for adoption. I got her out of there as soon as I could. I was at the shelter for 1 1/2 hrs. trying to pull this dog out of the shelter.  This entire case had been a nightmare.

Callie actually has been a pretty sick little girl. She has a yeast infection in both ears, she had an eye infection that developed, she was grossly underweight, and a couple of days later, she developed a really bad case of kennel cough. She’s been to the vet everyday for the past 3 days trying to save her. She is undergoing a chest x-ray as I type this.

Callie is in a wonderful foster home with Sarah and her husband Nate. They are wonderful foster parents and love this girl already! Callie has been through so much, but she’s a tough girl and we know she’ll make it.

Thank you for keeping us out there, fighting for these animals. I have to ask, if animal control would leave an animal in this condition and situation not once but twice,  what do they remove? I’m glad they finally did the right thing, after much pressure. It shouldn’t be this hard. Like I said, this should’ve taken only one phone call to get this girl out of this backyard. I’m sure in other cities, that’s all it would’ve taken. It’s a battle here and we will continue to be advocates for these poor babies.

I did have a good talk with a couple of supervisors at animal control about this and I do have their phone numbers if something like this comes up again (and it will!). Hopefully things will happen a little more quickly next time and the main concern will be the welfare of the animal, not the welfare of the owner.


14 Responses to “The Battle for Callie”

  1. Carol Coe Says:

    This is so unbelievable. On every level. That these sub-par humans could treat dogs this way, and that Animal Control is absolutely positively this inept and ineffective. I thank god for COH each and every day.

  2. andywhiteman Says:

    I can’t understand why animal control listens to lies from the “owner” when the condition of the dog is very obvious. COH, thanks for being there in this never ending battle.

  3. linda Says:

    Some people are just horrible. Is this KC Animal Control? Thank you COH, you do good work!

  4. Penny Francis Says:

    To everyone involved who fought long and hard for Callie, my/our heartfelt thank yous for your unending perserverance and patience with Animal Control, the owners and all idiots inbetween. It is heartwarming to hear a good ending admist all the trials. THANK YOU SO MUCH doesn’t seem to be enough but we do….ROCK ON!!

  5. Pam Says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you

  6. Eleanor Finley Says:

    I volunteered last fall with COH outreach and Callie was one of the first houses we went to back in September. I put that igloo dog house there for her and put her on the tie out and took away the chain. She was one of my favorites and I always liked checking back. She was thin then, and supposedly he had just gotten her as a stray. These pictures show her even thinner now, after many visits and 2 sets of dewormer that I dropped off. How disgusting. That man has had her 5 months and we gave him everything including bowls to feed her. We need to ban together to get rid of animal control and start over. Letters to the mayor will be sent from my house, hopefully from others too. Thanks for getting her Kate…..

  7. andywhiteman Says:

    It is obvious that some “people” should never be allowed to own a dog or any other animal! After a prolonged abuse is observed, these “people” should be put on a list similar to child predators.

    I no longer use language that accepts the current concept of animals as property, commodities and/or things. Rather than refer to myself and others as “owners” of animals, I now refer to myself and others as “guardians” of our animal companions and to animals as “he” or “she” rather than “it”. I urge you to do the same.

  8. Sarah Says:

    Eleanor, I thought maybe you’d like to hear an update on Callie. She has gained almost 4 pounds in the last week! She now knows what it’s like to be spoiled rotten, and she’s loving every minute of it! Got our first boxer wiggle out of her today, and she’s been rolling over to have her belly scratched all night!

  9. Tina Trenary Says:

    Is there even an application process for Kansas City Animal Control?? What is the deciding factor for employment? Is it a decision based on funding of if these “blinders” fit?? Shame on you Sly James for ignoring this problem you know is going on right under your nose…and you know it is. I wrote to you before as many have because COH continues to do what Kansas City officials should be doing! We are paying attention Sly out here in Olathe, and believe me, we have some concerns to pass along to just the right ones for the next election.

  10. Tina Trenary Says:

    Go to and leave a comment on his wall posts. Can’t leave a direct wall comment, but you can comment on the post’s there. I did.

  11. The Good Life « Chainofhope's Blog Says:

    […] You might remember a beautiful white Boxer that was starved on the end of her chain. It only took us 5 days to get animal control to finally remove her. Please check out her story when I first blogged about her. The blog was called “The Battle for Callie” and that is exactly what it was-a battle to get this girl out of her hell hole: […]

  12. nicki Says:

    Is there anything that can be done to get animal control to step up their game, because they let me down on helping a neighbors dog before.

  13. andywhiteman Says:

    Nicki, I have dealt with animal control in several cities. The tendency is to do as little as possible or even avoid the issue. When I lived in Aurora, CO; I found the Denver Dumb Friends League had enforcement authority. They dealt with the neighbor’s barking dogs which turned out to be abused dogs upon investigation. If you can locate an agency that as enforcement authority, you will get some action.

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