We had been visiting and helping a beautiful male Boxer/Pit mix who belonged to a young man. This guy would ebb and flow with how he was caring for his dog. Sometimes, this kid would have the dog outside in the fresh air running around in the fenced yard. He wasn’t chained, which was good. We would drop food and check up on him. This went on for about 1 1/2 yrs. Then things started going downhill and it would be that we would never see this dog outside and no one was ever home. The neighbors next door were friends with the kid and tried to help him. They told me that this guy kept the dog in the house and he didn’t even stay there anymore. They said that the guy would come by every few days. There were no utilities on anymore, no windows open, etc. We would leave a bag of food and the neighbors gave him gallon jugs of water for the dog.
The postal carrier over there was very concerned about this dog. She said she didn’t know what kind of shape he was in, that she used to give him milk bones all the time, but he was never out and she never saw the guy anymore. It was coming up on summer. We could hear the dog in the house when we’d drop food. Every time we went, the neighbors and the postal carrier would express their concern about this dog. They also said that they had a key to the house. This entire situation was weird, the relationship between all of these people was weird. I told them that I could not break into the house and get the dog and if they were so concerned they needed to get the dog out of there. I tried to put it back on them because it seemed like the neighbors would be so worried, but they wouldn’t do anything about it-even though they had a key to the house.
It was starting to get hot last summer and I stopped by one day. I told the neighbors that if they wouldn’t do anything about this, that I was going to have to call animal control and get this dog out of there. It was getting hotter outside and there were no utilities on in the house. The neighbors and postal carrier were very concerned about his eyes. They said he’d been in that dark house, with no electricity and all the windows covered. They said that one time when the guy did come by and let the dog outside for a few minutes that his eyes “looked funny”. They were worried that he was going blind. I didn’t know if they were being dramatic or what.
One day, thank God, one of the women that lived next door said, “I’m sick of this and what he’s doing to that dog.” She marched over there and unlocked the door. I snapped a quick picture. Apparently, when the guy stopped by and saw the dog food there, he just threw the bag into the living room floor and left. There were several bags laying around.Some of them had been ripped open by the dog and some hadn’t yet. One of the really sad things in this already very sad situation was that sitting in the floor were 2 gallon jugs of water that the neighbors had given the guy because his water was turned off. He hadn’t even bothered to open it and put some down for the dog. You can’t see in the picture I have of the house, but back in the hall and bedroom were piles of feces and puddles of urine. This poor boy had been living in here for months and months and was RARELY let outside. The whole situation was very strange and I blame the neighbors, too, of course. They had a key to the house and didn’t address this, which doesn’t say much for them. At least they kept expressing their concern about him, though, which ultimately led to his rescue.
This broke my heart because this dog was one of the sweetest dogs we’d ever met. The neighbor unlocked the door, patted the dog on the head, said, “have a good life”. She turned around and walked away. I thanked her, opened the van and this liberated boy rode shotgun, giving us kisses the entire time. He knew he was free now. We decided to call him Shotgun.
Shotgun settled in at Chain of Hope. He was so thankful to be rescued, he was the perfect dog. I’m totally serious-this dog did nothing wrong! He just had a lot of love to give. I thought of all of those lonely, long days and nights when he would see no one, yet he had all this love inside of him to give to someone. We doted on him, gave him lots of love, and put some weight on that boy! Shotgun loved everyone and everything. He played in playgroups and had the best time. I remember just standing at the window one day, just watching him play and run circles around the yard and chase other dogs. He had the biggest smile on his face. This dog had literally gone from hell to heaven. We sincerely thank you for keeping us going. Shotgun’s life had been transformed.
While Shotgun was with us at Chain of Hope, a wonderful young woman named Emily started volunteering. She would come and walk the dogs, help socialize them, clean kennels-whatever we needed. Emily really liked Shotgun and started taking him home on a weekend or for a few days. We were thrilled that he got that opportunity to get a taste of being in a home. Pretty soon, Shotgun just never came back! Emily and Tom said that Shotgun was the best dog in the world! We already knew that!
While Shotgun had been at Chain of Hope, we had a little pit girl named Daisy. Daisy came from a terrible situation ( https://chainofhope.wordpress.com/2012/06/09/blossom-tulip-and-daisy/). She was pretty scarred emotionally from her previous environment. She was a shy little girl. She and Shotgun became the best of friends! They played great together. Eventually, Emily decided to take Daisy home to be reunited with Shotgun (who they’d been fostering for a few weeks). It was great for them to be back together again. Tom and Emily would take Daisy home every once in awhile, like they had Shotgun. Another volunteer was eventually able to take Daisy home to foster and a friend of hers eventually adopted Daisy.
We’ll jump over to Nestle’s story for a minute. I blogged about her last December: https://chainofhope.wordpress.com/2012/12/18/nestle/
Nestle was rescued by a good samaritan, who called Chain of Hope. We brought Nestle into our program. She was a very skinny little girl and just delightful! We couldn’t wait to get some weight on her. Nestle just blossomed into a gorgeous girl! She was a funny little thing and we adored her.
Emily and Tom decided to officially adopt Shotgun, who they renamed Tyson., Tyson’s mommy was still volunteering. She met Nestle when Nestle came into our program and thought she was pretty cute! Emily had to take some time off from volunteering and in the meantime, we transferred Nestle to Furry Kids-a WONDERFUL local rescue group that helps us with a lot of our dogs and puppies! When Emily returned, she was pretty interested in seeing Nestle again. We told Emily that we had transferred her. We knew Nestle would have better luck at getting adopted by going to weekly adoption events. She was as cute as can be and once people met her, they would fall in love!
Emily and Tom had talked about it and decided that they wanted to adopt Nestle. Nestle and Tyson got along so well and really enjoyed each other. They contacted Furry Kids and officially adopted Nestle! Tom and Emily brought Nestle home and their lives have never been the same since, I’m sure! Emily came by the other day with both dogs. It was so great to see them all again! What a great family! Nestle had grown and was glossy and gorgeous! She is a daddy’s girl! Tyson is a handsome hunk and a momma’s boy! Both of these kids are very, very happy! Thank you, Emily and Tom, for adopting these two amazing dogs and for all of your support of Chain of Hope. Thank you, Chain of Hope supporters, for making this all possible.