April 2003, I heard on the English Mastiff list about a poor girl
from a MO puppymill that had got "stuck" in NE with
no place to go.
She was considered unadoptable because of the horrible condition
she was in and my heart went out to her. I commented on the list
that I wish I were closer because I would have liked to help her.
Steph Stollings replied back and asked if I were serious. I said
yes, I was.
This was my first time of "meeting" Steph and ultimately,
turned out to be my very first interstate rescue transport coordinating
Steph was having difficulty finding time to try to put together
a transport, I asked her if I could give it a try. She said "sure"
disbelief in her voice, but a week later with most of the legs
filled she exclaimed "I think you're going to do it!".
I did do it and within two weeks
of initial contact, I had filled all of the legs and met all sorts
of people in many states that were willing to take on the transport
the unadoptable girl from MO. With the help of MCOA volunteers
from RMMF and volunteers from other breeds I met through the net,
we brought this 80# skinny little girl to WA. I picked her up
for her last leg in Kellogg ID and when I stopped at a rest stop
for her potty break
I watched her try to warm up to children who shrunk back from
her in horror. I gently explained what happened to her and they
to gingerly to pet her head. She had had untreated mastitis that
left her back teats so badly swollen she looked like she had an
udder that was
literally 1" from the ground. Every time she went potty,
it would slide down the back of her "udder" and leave
her a mess. Her tail was only 3/4 of
its normal length due to happy tail. Her ribs were prominent as
was her backbone and she was small by being bred before she was
full grown herself.
The day after she made it to my house, I took her straight to
my vet and she assessed her for much needed surgery. She had a
double mastectomy the
next day and the vet said she could not do any more until a later
date because of the risk of her circulatory system being too compromised
healing properly. I told her we're not doing this for aesthetics,
but to prevent further problems since she was not able to even
walk without kicking
mammary tissue. She came home to heal and put on weight and the
biggest issue we had was with her hatred of being crated. We worked
though, and we got her healed and she started learning life as
its supposed to be.On 4th of July weekend, my best friend and
her family came camping
at our park and I witnessed a miracle. As soon as my friend's
hubby walked in the door, April came alive for the first time.
She went to his side, looked at
him like she'd been waiting her entire life for him, and never
left it again. I asked Steph if I could rehome her when it was
obvious that he is where she
wanted to be and that was the start of Ms Pretty's forever home
life. She was reported to be 5 yr old although she probably was
a little older.
Randy and Ms Pretty
was a funny girl that LOVED to be outside. She would stay outside
sunbathing while all the other dogs would be inside in the A/C.
would hold off winter as long as possible just wanting to have
the freedom to be outdoors and her parents allowed her until the
would drop and then coax her in. She always slept indoors, but
for a dog that had come from cages too small into a yard of her
freedom was just too sweet to leave for a house. She always had
the choice --they felt she needed that. When PRA made her night
installed flood lights in the front yard so she could do her business
and find her way back to the door. They rearranged their home
and their lives to make it easier for her to live as a blind dog
for the time she had left. She walked proudly in the town parades
with her girl,
Chyanne, and she was known throughout the town and she LOVED going
camping with the family where she'd think she was the watchdog.
after 5.5 years of moving to her real home, Ms Pretty said her
final goodbye. She is now at rest on a knoll in our park
where she began her journey to happiness. The years of abuse had
not robbed her enthusiasm or her love, but her legs could
not support her anymore and her body was just giving out. Through
gentle coaxing and support, Regina and Randy made the
most loving decision to let her go with dignity. She went back
to Jacqueline who helped her when she arrived here and
Jacqueline helped her once again --this time with her family all
around her surrounding her with love and tears. She was
a wonderful Mastiff
with a heart of pure gold that never saw the show ring and never
earned a title other than Ms Pretty.
April, our Ms Pretty. You will be sorely missed.
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