In Memory of “Angel Puppy on Wheels”
In all of my years of living here, I have been privy to many rescued animal stories. I became the center of one almost seven years ago when Miss Princess, the love of my life, and my popular canine side-kick and “kindness teacher” to St. John kids was rescued by our ACC.
I made the initial phone call after finding this beautiful dog accidentally run over and in serious need of medical help. Our ACC was responsible for the rest. Princess and I fell in love. My commitment to helping other animals grew deeper because of this very important bond. We both wanted to give back to the ACC because we have received so much together through this relationship.
A few months ago, I literally stumbled across an incredible story in the midst of the sadness of the loss of life of a young Coral Bay woman. The names shall remain anonymous; however, the story must be told.
I was on my way to talk to staff at a local restaurant where the woman had worked as I was asked to do a story on her short but meaningful life. The grief was thick, even in the open-air setting. Grief is like that. I took a deep breath and walked through it, ready to comfort those much younger than I and very new to the experience of death.
As I walked toward the restaurant, I heard a deep whimper and felt something nudge my foot. I looked down. There was a small pit bull so full of that “puppy love” energy that I felt a jolt in the opening of my sad heart.
This puppy was hooked up to a pair of wheels — a kind of wheel chair — as his back body was crippled. The puppy didn’t seem to notice. It was oblivious to his “brokenness.” All the puppy wanted was my attention, like his only purpose in life, in that moment, was to give love to me!
I sought to find the owner. He was a young quiet man in his twenties who after much questioning, told me his story. This young man said he found himself in a situation where he was taken to a litter of pit bull puppies bred to sell. The puppies all looked hungry and poorly taken care of. He left after paying for two, thinking that he could somehow take them away to help them out. Shortly after that, one of the puppies took a fall, resulting in major spine damage.
He immediately took the puppy to the vets and ultimately spent more than $2,000 on its recovery. He received special support from Dr. Jan Perkins, who helped get “wheels” for the puppy’s little broken body.
When I first met this young man, he was meeting a potential “adopter” as he had just bought a boat and this disabled dog had proved to have special needs he was unable to meet. One could tell that he was very torn about giving this puppy away — it had become a big part of his heart and life! The depth of concern and incredible compassion that I felt and saw on his face said it all. It was an experience that touched me deeply on many levels; especially at a time of loss.
We too often see what our youth do wrong, and rarely see all that they do right. This young man showed compassion in attempting to help two small puppies in great need. He expanded this sense of responsibility when an accident occurred by doing everything possible to save the puppy through veterinary help and care, no matter the cost!
Sadly, the puppy did not survive beyond a few more weeks. It was simply too broken to fix.
The “hope” that its little short life gave, running around in circles on small back wheels, dragging its lifeless body behind it, looking for love amidst grief, sadness and human loss was remarkable. This young man as well as this “Angel on Wheels Puppy” are both true heroes to me, demonstrating that miracles of light do happen in life amidst moments of deep darkness.
Wagapalooza in High Gear!
Saturday, May 12, from 5 to 8 p.m. is the “family date” to make on Mother’s Day weekend. It will be the best Wagapalooza event ever!
We are needing volunteers to set up the ball field early, sell at the event itself and pack up and clean up after 8 p.m. Want to help? Call me at 693-5874 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.