All too often, certain rescued pets come into our lives, make a huge and lasting impact, and are taken away from us much too soon. These are their stories.
Nevaeh (aka Veda) was at the shelter for a very long time after her owners gave her up. Down to her last days a very dedicated pitbull mom and foster mom stepped in and took her in as a foster. Nevaeh spent over a year in foster care of which time maybe 1 person looked at her but passed her up... unfortunately the very real reality for all dark colored pits and pit mixes. Just months ago her foster mom was diagnoses with stage 4 cancer and recently passed away. We listed Nevaeh as urgent hoping someone would step up and give this big sassy girl a chance, but after several months her rescuer never came. With no foster mom, no adopter, and no place to go there was no other options. On August 13th Nevaeh was humanely euthanized so she could walk the rainbow bridge with her foster mom. Rest in peace sweet girl.
Slade was in the same home as Nevaeh only as a permanent resident. Slade also came to Second Chance for help years ago. He was in foster care for a long time with little chances of finding a home so his foster mom decided he could forever stay right where he was. When Slade's mom passed away all hope was gone. Slade was a strong protector and the pitbull population is out of control. There was no one lined up to take another pit let alone a strong boy like Slade. With every rescue, shelter, and foster home over--flowing Slade had no where to go. On August 13th he walked in with Nevaeh and was humanely euthanized. Rest in peace handsome boy and may you also walk with your mom on the rainbow bridge.
I am writing with sad news. This morning, Matilda lost a battle with lymphoma. We learned of her illness at the beginning of December. Matilda, Otis and I spent the past 10 weeks hanging out together, making sure that she was happy & comfortable.
I like to think that the past almost 3 years that she stayed with Otis and I that she had fun, was happy and loved unconditionally .
-Andy Bobrytzke, Matilda's dad
Buster’s story begins when I heard of a litter of puppies kept in terrible conditions in a backyard. The puppies and both parents were kept in a two by five, concrete floored, chain link dog run filled with feces and with no fresh water. They were four week old English setter pups whose mother and father were brother and sister. I could not leave them there in those conditions, but in my current circumstances I could only take one. I had to beg and plead with my father as it was! I helped the people find homes for the rest of the pups and set to work raising the one I brought home. We named him Buster. He had some problems from the inbreeding such as allergies and sensitive skin, and I knew he would probably decline a little faster than other dogs, but I wanted to give him a good life. He was wickedly smart, and training was a breeze. He won obedience shows at only a year old, and qualified for 4-H obedience state competition twice. He was also on his way to earning his CD title with the AKC. He was my wing man and my best friend. He went absolutely everywhere with me, to the annoyance of some of my friends! When I was having issues with my life, he was my shoulder to cry on and my rock. When he was two, we began training for agility and rally. He was fabulous. But then his personality began to change, and he began to walk a little more stiffly. He had Lyme disease. He had been vaccinated for it and was on tick and flea prevention year round, but one tricky tick with a different strain managed to infect him. It damaged his joints, especially his front leg which had suffered a previous injury. He also began to develop arthritis, and we discovered he had hip dysplasia. He was put on pain medication and supplements, along with a premium diet. His Lyme disease went into remission, but he had flare ups every once in awhile. His personality continued to decline, he growled at everyone, and bit several people. We saw trainer after trainer, and all of them agreed. Buster was a fabulous, well trained dog who must have a medical problem. After doing every test we could think of, it was determined the problem was neurological, and it was very likely a brain tumor. Buster began having seizures. His joints declined at an astronomical rate. He was in constant pain, and he could no longer do agility or go for runs with me. You could see the pain in his eyes. When he attacked our foster dog, something he would never have done when he was younger, I made the toughest decision any loving pet owner has to make. I made the appointment to put Buster down.
The last few days of his life were amazing. He went to his favorite places, and we spent every waking moment together. He had all his favorite foods, and he was happy. I believe in some way he knew it was his time. He became the old Buster again for those last few days. He didn’t growl or limp at all. He left all of us with memories of the fabulous dog he truly was. Buster was only four years old. I would do it all again in a heartbeat. That dog changed my life, and I dedicate my volunteer work with Second Chance to him. And even though Buster is gone, I now have Oliver (see Success Stories), another rescue dog who came into my life at just the right time.
In memory of my best friend, and my baby, Buster.
-Kayla, Buster's Mom
I saved Tiny Man (along with Eddie - see Success Stories) from Logan County Shelter in August of 2007. He came to me very thin and testing positive for heartworms. It didn't take long for his past to be discovered. We learned that Tiny was previously owned by a breeder and had bloodline that spanned many generations. He was a “stud dog” for years. While he was in foster care, funds were raised for his heartworm treatment, and he endured it like a champ. Tiny lived with me and his foster doggie brothers for almost a year before he was adopted by a local family. They had Tiny for several months, but when he was diagnosed with renal failure, he was returned so that he could receive the treatment he so badly needed. Tiny was hospitalized for a week to recoup, and that gave him another 4+ months of feel-good living.
In the end, his body was giving out. He pawed at my chest - restless, weak and so very tired. He told me it was time to go, and I knew. With me by his side, Tiny Man left this world today. He left me behind forever changed and so thankful that my journey took me to Logan County Shelter that day. What beautiful lives I saved. So much happiness, so many fabulous memories, so much love came out of it all. And if asked, would I do it all again even if I knew it would have the same outcome?......Absolutely, 100%, without a doubt.
I want to thank everyone who loved Tiny, everyone who will miss him, and everyone who supported me in my efforts to give him the best that I could. To those who understand – to those who understood - I thank you. In Tiny’s honor, I hope to one day start Tiny’s Fund, a fund to pay for pit bulls' medical expenses when owners cannot afford all the treatment required.
My life, Tiny’s life, and Eddie’s life all changed the day I walked into that shelter and walked out with them both. I’ll never be the same, for more reasons than just one. Knowing that on clear nights with the sky full of stars Eddie still lives doing his best dino-rooster impression all around the house reminds me that when one life ends, others continue.
Sometimes to move on you have to let go, and that’s what I just did - if for nothing more than to save another. One day I know someone will save me too.
-Heather, Tiny's Mom