When someone thinks of animal rescue, the most common thought that comes to mind is taking in unwanted dogs and finding them good homes, which is the majority of what Peace, Love and Animals does. It is depressing to walk down the halls of the dog pound, look at all the sad faces, and know you can only save a few. However, when you find that perfect match between a dog and a family, and place a dog in a forever home, there is no greater joy in this world.

Occasionally, animal rescue means something different. It was one of those days, when you get that frantic phone call and your gut knows that something is wrong by the tone of a person’s voice. A dog has just been hit by a car and they are calling for your help. It is a stray that no one wants to claim. This poor thing is lying in a ditch, clinging to life in the pouring down rain. As we rush to save her, I call ahead to the vet to let them know that we are coming and we don’t know what to expect. When there is a situation like this, you can’t tell if anything is broken or even if it will be safe to move her, but you have to try. When we arrive at the scene, the poor girl had taken the impact of the car straight in the face, but she is alive, so we move quickly.

Daisy recoveringOnce we arrive at the vet’s office and they have her stable, they start with X-rays to determine the extent of the injury. The decision has to be made if she can be saved or if there is no hope; we do not want her to suffer. She is in terrible shock and her body shakes violently. The vet quickly start with fluids and pain medications to give the poor thing some relief. Several tests are done and it is determined that she is suffering mainly from head trauma, a broken sinus bone, broken ribs, and a possible skull fracture. They work fast to start medications to prevent swelling of the brain and to stop the shock. Through all the medical hustle and bustle, I am standing beside this sweet little dog, constantly stroking my hand down her side and talking to her, trying to comfort her. This is the hard part of animal rescue. It is hard to hold back the tears when you are looking down on a helpless baby lying on the table with blood everywhere and knowing she is in pain. It is even more sickening knowing that whoever did this didn’t even bother to stop.

After several hours, she was finally stable enough for me to go home. It was difficult to leave and I really didn’t want to. They told me that if she makes it through the night, then she has a good chance. So I walked over to her for one last little kiss and as I stood there, I realized, she might not be with us tomorrow. During all this time and drama, no one has given her a name. She has to know that someone loved her enough to give her a name. So I leaned over and kissed her on the head and called her Daisy.

Little napping puppies!Another late night phone call, but this time it is a litter of new born puppies. A desperate good Samaritan has just pulled seven tiny babies out from under a house after the mother dog has gone missing for two days. She is very nervous and doesn’t know how to care for the starving new born babies. It is very late when they arrive at the shelter and it is really hard to remain calm in front of her when I see the condition of these babies. I know that we must act very quickly, since these little pups are about 8 days old and to be without their mother for two days is very critical. Their body temperature is low and they are close to dehydration. We begin fluids on each pup and rub syrup on the gums to bring up their sugar level. Each pup gets a warm bath to remove the dirt and germs from being born in the dirt under a house. As movement begins to return to the almost lifeless pups, we begin to encourage the bottle feeding. You can tell they are so hungry. Some of them are much larger than the others and they seem to pop back to life very quickly. Some are smaller and are taking a little longer. There is one little girl that doesn’t look so well. She is very weak, too weak to nurse on the bottle, so I have to use a syringe to try and get the formula in her. In a situation like this, you must keep trying, again and again. It was a very long night for my friend Tammy and me. The puppies were so weak and could only take a few drops of formula before they would have to rest. After they would rest, we would try again. You have to keep trying, especially for the one little one that is so weak.

Sometimes animal rescue includes life and death situations. We are here to save animals, whether it is from death row at the dog pound or from near death on the side of the road. Daisy did pull through and has come to live at Peace, Love and Animals. Her life is very different now. No more wondering as a stray. She has a name, people who love her, and one day, she will have a family to call her own. The beautiful little litter of puppies are growing so fast and doing wonderful, however, the one little weak girl did leave us. We tried so hard to save her, but we know she waits for the rest of the litter at the Rainbow Bridge and one day they all will once again be reunited.

Blessing to you all,

Cathy Oakley
Director Peace, Love and Animals

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