A few weeks ago, City Dogs Rescue was asked if we could help this pregnant beagle mix who was scheduled to die in a shelter in Laurens, South Carolina. This isn't one of CDR's partner shelters so we weren't sure if we could help. Setting up a relationship with a new shelter takes time and trust. Our volunteers spend countless hours coordinating vet care, logistics and transports for our dogs. Adding a new one to the mix always presents challenges. Despite all that, we couldn't stop thinking about Katie.
Just a few days later, the shelter posted this photo of Katie with the caption: "Mama that delivered, but pups born dead." At this point, we knew Katie's time was running out. We decided to try to find a foster home for her so we could save her. Janice who has adopted 3 dogs from CDR said she could help for two weeks so that we could get Katie to freedom. We contacted local volunteers to help us save Katie. One of our generous donors, Kim R. sponsored Katie's rescue. The local volunteers told us countless times that Katie was doomed without CDR's help.
She had to spend weeks at the vet where they treated pneumonia and a fever. Her radiology report shows that she had a fractured vertebrae surrounded by bullet fragments. She clearly has been through hell. We still ended up paying over $1,000 in veterinary care to get her fully vetted and cared for while in South Carolina. Janice was regularly checking in with us to see how Katie was doing as she was eager to meet her new foster.
She was finally cleared for transport and considered healthy enough to come to Janice's home in Rixeyville, Virginia. Katie arrived at Janice's home this past weekend and was very skeptical of Janice. She cowered in fear and clearly seemed to be in "flight" mode. She refused to walk on the leash so she was let in the backyard with the other dogs in the house. The shelter uses catch poles and slings dogs around so she was probably still traumatized from that. As you may know, the next part is that Katie jumped the fence in the backyard. Despite having miles to run, she stayed in the vicinity and we think it was because she knew deep down that Janice loved her and was someone she could trust.
Janice describes how they got her back, "[Neighbors] Beth, Luke and Annie heard a strange bark. Luke ran down to the river bottom and found her snagged on some small trees and rocks, but she growled and tried to bite him, so Amy called me. As I was trying to free her snagged leash (Thank God for that leash) she bit me again, but once free, she walked on the leash with me all the way back to my house. She was eating Vienna Sausages out of the palm of my hand in that crate. I forgive her."
At only 22 lbs, Katie has been getting a lot of sausages. Katie has made a mountain of progress in just a few days. She is now eating out of Janice's hand and even licked her. Janice has been truly amazing in her care of Katie.
We are working on finding a trainer in the Culpepper, Virginia area who has experience with extremely fearful dogs. If you know anyone who would go to Janice's house, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Katie is now only allowed on a supervised tie-out when she's outside.
We would like to extend a huge thank you to Janice Palleria, Katie's volunteer foster mom. We would also like to thank Carlyn and Carmen our volunteer Lost Dog Coordinators who assisted with Katie's recovery. They are still working around the clock to find Puffin.