Starving Dog Unrecognizable When Returned To Shelter
“He truly deserves a happily ever after this time.”
When we adopt a dog, we’re making a promise for the rest of their lives. But is that promise to keep them with us through thick and thin, or to make the best possible choices for them? Those aren’t always the same thing.
Roland – then known as Shorty – was available for adoption at the Montgomery County Animal Shelter in Conroe, Tᴇxᴀs, when he was ᴛᴡᴏ ʏᴇᴀʀs ᴏʟᴅ.His intake photo depicts a squat, fat puppy with a blue bandana and a smile. Shorty weighed 40 pounds, which was a little hefty for his stature but not unhealthy. The photo was shared on social media in March 2019, the day after he was admitted to the shelter, and it drew the attention of numerous potential adopters. He was already out of the shelter kennel and into his new home three days later.
We’d like to think that at that point, everything will be happily ever after – but life is complicated. When things became difficult for Roland’s family, he went through it with them. When things go tough, a devoted dog would prefer remain by his human’s side – but that may not be the greatest place for them.
Not much is known about what happened to Roland after his adoption in March 2019, until he appeared back at MCAS a year and a half later. In November of 2020, Roland’s humans explained that they had become ʜᴏᴍᴇʟᴇss since adopting him and were living in their car. With very little to their name, they could not afford to feed their dog. They were faced with a difficult choice: watch their dog slowly suffer and waste away, or surrender him and never see him again?
By the time they finally made their decision, Roland was in ᴛᴇʀʀɪʙʟᴇ shape. He was hardly recognizable as the same dog. The big eyes and sweet face were the same, but the ᴘɪᴛɪꜰᴜʟ pup the shelter workers saw was skin, bones, and little else. Roland could hardly lift his head and was ᴜɴᴀʙʟᴇ ᴛᴏ ᴡᴀʟᴋ. The ᴘᴏᴏʀ boy had been sᴜꜰꜰᴇʀɪɴɢ for a long, long time to have reached this point. He needed immediate, personal attention.
Roland was ʀᴇsᴄᴜᴇᴅ from MCAS by Jamie’s Animal Rescue. The founder, Jamie C., has been saving animals since she was 11 years old and has dedicated her life to supporting some of the most ᴄʜᴀʟʟᴇɴɢɪɴɢ cases. She becomes deeply invested in every animal she personally saves from shelters, and she perseveres despite her ʜᴇᴀʀᴛᴀᴄʜᴇ for each and every one of them.
She frequently chooses individuals with a sʟɪᴍ ᴄʜᴀɴᴄᴇ ᴏꜰ sᴜʀᴠɪᴠɪɴɢ. This means she is continuously ɢʀɪᴇᴠɪɴɢ, but her love and attention often results in some ᴀᴍᴀᴢɪɴɢ ʀᴇᴄᴏᴠᴇʀɪᴇs. Jamie found Roland lying on his side at MCAS and took him in immediately. She let her followers and friends know she had another dog who needed a miracle on her hands.
Jamie understood that his previous owners had been hit with ᴛʀᴀɢᴇᴅʏ, but she couldn’t understand how they could watch a dog they claimed to love become so, so weak for so long. Working with Roland would require a great deal of patience. When Jamie arrived, he had a body ᴄᴏɴᴅɪᴛɪᴏɴ sᴄᴏʀᴇ ᴏꜰ 1 – the lowest imaginable. When we see a dog who has been sᴛᴀʀᴠᴇᴅ for so long, we want to give them as much food as they desire, but Jamie recognized that his frail body couldn’t handle too much too fast. Still, she promised followers – and Roland – that things would be better soon. Jamie lavished Roland with the attention he had been lacking for so long. Aside from his ᴜɴᴜsᴜᴀʟ sᴋɪɴɴɪɴᴇss, she discovered additional indicators of ɴᴇɢʟᴇᴄᴛ. Roland did something very exceptional when staying with a temporary foster just two days later, while on a brief excursion.
“I got word this morning that he’s decided he’s had enough of lying horizontal… He got up on his own today and took 20 steps for a treat before deciding to take another 20 steps. After that, he was ᴛᴜᴄᴋᴇʀᴇᴅ ᴏᴜᴛ and chose to merely wait for his treats in the cupboard.
The small steps he took showed two things: he has an ɪɴᴄʀᴇᴅɪʙʟᴇ sᴘɪʀɪᴛ, and he loves food! By the end of November – less than 30 days after he had been surrendered – he had been placed with a foster and had already reached 35lbs. Those ʀɪʙs that were once sticking out of his sides had disappeared and he carries a healthy layer of fat on his hips. Too weak to even lift his head unassisted just a few weeks before, Roland is now playing tug-of-war and taking walks around the neighborhood with his foster family.
Roland’s progress has been nothing short of a miracle, and his loving nature never faltered even after the ɴᴇɢʟᴇᴄᴛ he had experienced. Now, at a healthy weight, Roland is ready to find a forever family.
Please pray for the best for him?
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Please pray for the best for him?