I first met Brenda a couple of years ago when she called needing food. When we asked her what animals she had, she said her dog had had a litter of puppies, plus she had a couple of other dogs. I went over to take food to her the next day. She lived in a basement apartment on Van Brunt in a dumpy, old, brick apartment building. When I went to the basement and knocked, I met Brenda. She is mentally challenged, but can cope with life fairly well. She had a momma dog with a litter of puppies. The puppies were old enough to run around, but they were still nursing. They had a male dog down there, too, that was aggressive. The puppies needed another week with mom. We loaded her up with food and told her we’d check back. Her boyfriend or whoever was there and he was not very receptive to anything we had to say.
I think we ended up with the last couple of puppies or something (can’t remember all the details back then) and then we took momma in and spayed her. Brenda would call for help with food once in awhile and we would drop it off at her apartment building. We hardly ever actually saw Brenda anymore, we just had to put it by her door. However, one day I did see her walking one of her dogs along Van Brunt and that was very refreshing to see!
Brenda called about 6 months ago and said that they had moved and she needed help with the dogs. She said that the landlord where they moved wouldn’t let them have dogs in the house and they went ahead and moved anyway because they nowhere to go. She called for help getting them set up outside. We really had no choice but to help these dogs. We didn’t want them going to the shelter, or her giving them away to just anyone. At least we knew that everyone was fixed and we could help maintain them. We headed over to see their situation and talk to Brenda. They were all on the back porch when we got there. I didn’t even know that she had gotten married to a totally different guy than was in the apartment on Van Brunt. Pretty nice people and appreciative. So sad that the dogs were now going to be outside on tie-outs, but there was really no where for them to go. We weren’t in any position to take on 3 large dogs, so we did what we could. We took 3 dog houses over there, put them all on good collars, tie-out cables, and hooked up water buckets for all of them. We left food, treats and rawhides. We loved her dogs-all of them were very sweet, friendly, and adorable.
We stopped by about a month later to check on the dogs, hang more fly traps, etc. Brenda came out and told me that her husband had died! She said he died in his sleep one night from sleep apnea. I told her how sorry we were to hear that and that she should call when she needs something for her dogs-we were totally here to help her dogs and her.
Brenda called for food again and it took us several days to get over there. We were slammed with calls, per usual. When we got over there, Brenda was not home so we went around back to fix up the dogs. I did not like what I saw. The dogs were thin, especially the rottie mix. Her ears were bleeding from the flies. The largest tan boy was pretty thin, too.I will say that every dog had a bucket full of clean water. The dogs have plenty of shade all day long. I could tell that without her husband’s support, Brenda was going to have to be monitored about once a week. She did a good job as long as she had food-we just need to keep her in food for these wonderful dogs’ sake. I think that now that things are slipping, we may be able to get her to slowly sign over one at a time. Hopefully, we can make her realize that she is overwhelmed. In the meantime, Chain of Hope will be going to this house every week to stay on top of this situation.
Thanks for keeping us out there! Please continue. We are the only hope for so many animals.