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Sad Beginning, Happy Ending

As I was feeding horses on Friday afternoon I did a double take when I saw not one, but two, black dogs standing by one of the run-in sheds. I became quite concerned when I watched this clearly elderly dog walk in a very disoriented manner, with a very crippled gait, to the point where the literally walked into a fence twice. I went into the barn, grabbed a leadrope, and got her into Igor’s air conditioned office.

My sympathy for this sweet, old dog continued to grow as she drank the water I offered to her like she had just crossed the Sahara desert. She scarfed down the food I gave her an hour later. As I was tending to this sweet old gal I texted a picture to Jason of Ewen and our poor stray dog. I sent it with the caption, “apparently we have two dogs now.” As a reminder, Ewen showed up two years ago in late August, 2015.

Our sad visitor had a collar but no ID, so Jason got in the truck and started driving around and knocking on our doors. We only have two neighbors in walking distance, and they are still quite a hike away. No one knew who our visitor was. We began posting on social media, posting on lost and found groups, and generally putting the word out to as many people as we could reach that we had a lost dog. Still there were no takers.

In the meantime we used one of my longe lines to contain our visitor to the barn so she could not start wandering again. She was very sweet and friendly to us, to Ewen, to Igor, to Carter, to everyone. She ate all the food we put in front of her. By Saturday afternoon after some rest along with plenty of water and food, she was acting a lot less crippled and senile.

The only problem with our sweet, grateful visitor was it was clear that peaceful coexistence with Ewen was not going to be possible. This sweet, very old girl wanted to spend most of her time sleeping hard. All Ewen wanted her to do was play and he wouldn’t stop trying. She was very patient with him while Ewen jumped around like a monkey invading her space for three days, but she clearly wanted him to stop. And he just wouldn’t stop.

Jason reached out to our friend Leslie who has kindly fostered many dogs through the years. We threw ourselves at her feet and asked Leslie if one of the rescues she worked with might take her into their program. We offered to do all of her initial vet work to help either rescue out financially. I wanted to cry tears of relief and happiness when Leslie agreed to take her as a foster.

On Monday morning I drug our poor visitor into the car and drove her to the vet. Aside from having cataracts in both eyes and being almost deaf our visitor was overall healthy. Amazingly she had no heartworms, and she also had a clean fecal. She was vaccinated, received some flea and tick treatment, and I put her back in the car to drive her to her foster home.

Leslie named our poor, lost dog Abigail Rose. Abigail Rose had an uneventful introduction to Leslie’s other dogs, and ignored the cat. Abigail Rose proved to be housebroken. Abigail Rose slept quietly through her first night with Leslie. On her second day Leslie bought Abigail Rose a rose colored collar with ID tags, and declared her a foster fail. Abigail Rose had found a home.

We don’t know what Abigail Rose’s story is prior to Friday. Clearly she had been someone’s pet. She’s housebroken, leash broken, didn’t have heartworms and overall is a healthy senior dog. We don’t know if she got loose and wandered off and got lost, if she got dumped, or how she came to be in her desperately sad circumstances when I found her on Friday. We do know that whatever her story was prior to Friday, that Abigail Rose found her pot of gold at the end of the rainbow with Leslie.

Jason and I could not be more thankful to Leslie for opening her home to Abigail Rose. If only every lost, scared, dehydrated and exhausted animal could have such a happy ending. There aren’t enough Leslie’s in the world.

We let Abigail Rose borrow one of Ewen’s extra beds. I had to drag her onto it several times before she realized that it was a comfortable place to rest

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Abigail Rose was severely dehydrated when she showed up on Friday afternoon

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Igor was keeping a close eye on the interloper in his barn; she was so grateful for food and water

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Abigail Rose in her new home (photo courtesy of new mom Leslie)

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seeing this rose colored collar with the tag made me tear up . . .

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. . . and this one made me actually cry

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Remmy and Bruno being silly

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MyLight, Calimba and Renatta

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Cisco and Hemi having play time

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the grey horse club claimed their own section of the pasture; Gus, Asterik, Cocomo, Silver and George

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Homer and Moe

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Mick

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Lotus and Romeo

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Gus and Cocomo

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Rocky and Toledo

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Gus, Asterik and Silver

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Rip, Revy and Grand

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Norman and Dawn

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Lily and Dolly

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