Saturday, October 26, 2013

Shiloh's Story

Once upon a time there was a little sheltie puppy named Shiloh.  She lived with a family – a mom and a dad and a couple of kids.  Perhaps it was a good home, perhaps not, but it was a home and she grew into an adult and learned a few things about family life and the days slipped into months and months into years. And years.  And years.

Then one day mom and dad split up.  Mom took the kids, dad took the dog.  Unfortunately, dad was an alcoholic, as were his new roommates.  And so they forgot to feed Shiloh.  And they had anger management issues.  And so they yelled at her and swore at her and sometimes even kicked her.  Her health deteriorated, opportunistic fleas took over her malnourished body, her fur matted and her nails grew long, and she was one sad sheltie.  One sad senior sheltie.   Her records show she was born May 11, 1998 – fifteen and one half years ago.

One day, a friend of one of the roommates could stand it no longer, and confided in her animal-loving colleague at work.  That colleague networked with other animal-loving people, including me.  

When I received the email, and saw the photos,  I knew I wanted to help.  But I knew I couldn’t take this on alone at that particular point in time – my mom was palliative – and so I contacted the Shetland Sheepdog Club of BC.  They are a group of sheltie breeders who believe that their obligation to the breed extends to helping shelties in need, and who have therefore established a Sheltie Rescue branch within their organization.  They have helped us out before  - they had a hand in Belle’s rescue, they had contact with Eddie’s former owner, and they also offered assistance on two or three other occasions when I heard of other shelties that might be in need of a rescue placement.   They said if we could get the owner to surrender her, they would help out however they could.

The friend of the roommate removed the dog from danger and got the owner to sign surrender papers.  (Sometimes a voluntary surrender is a faster and more surefire route to get a dog out of a bad situation than calling in the authorities).  She said the owner seemed ‘relieved’.  Her colleague who had networked for her took Shiloh for a few days, got her to a vet for immediate assessment, treated her for fleas, tidied her fur, gave her food and water and love.  Then Sheltie Rescue sent someone from the island to the mainland to pick her up, and one of their members has been fostering her for the past several weeks  - Shiloh was groomed, had much-needed dental work done, began the process of regaining her health, and received all the love and attention she wanted.  They prepared her for her forever home.

With me.  With Eddie and Mitzi and Allie and me. 

Today I drove down to Victoria to fill in the adoption papers and bring Ms. Shiloh home.  She is sweet, loving, shy, timid,  and very beautiful.  She is very small and thin – only 17 pounds. She is a bit bewildered at the moment, but after a couple of hours checking out the garden and the house, she tucked into her dinner, then settled into a crate and fell fast asleep. 

Thank you to K. who couldn’t stand by and see her suffer,  and who persuaded the owner to surrender her. Thank you to Wendi who networked her, and took her in while the rest of the rescue plan could be put in place.  Thanks also to Julie who went to the mainland to pick her up, and to Joanne and Julie who fostered her and loved her these past few weeks.  Thank you to the Shetland Sheepdog Club of BC,  Sheltie Rescue who took her on, paid for all her immediate veterinary care, and who have now entrusted Shiloh to my care.  Sometimes it takes a community to save a dog. 

Welcome, Shiloh, welcome home.  I promise you good food and exercise, comfortable beds and regular grooming, vet care when needed, and love.  Lots and lots and lots of love.  I hope you like it here. At fifteen and a half, you may not have a long time, but I promise you it will be a good time.  

Shiloh, before rescue -
The photo that broke my heart.

Shiloh, approximately one month later -
checking out my back yard today.
(Hopefully she will cooperate more with the camera in the days ahead!)


Anonymous said...

Jean, it broke my heart just reading Shiloh's story. Thank you for all the good work you do. I am always in awe of you and our daughter, Bev, and their caring compassionate nature with animals.
Aileen Pickard

Anonymous said...

Aw Jean, she's lovely! And such a lucky girl to have found her forever home with you and your crew. I get all teary with these rescue stories, but love to hear about them just the same. Good for you!
barb and the furry ones

Caroline A said...

Welcome home shiloh!
Can't wait for the stories and pictures that are sure to follow!

Anonymous said...

So touched to hear you found room for one more critter. Best to you all, Barb

Marie said...

Welcome home, Shiloh, you don't have to worry anymore, you have a wonderful home now! congratulations, Jean and all!

Anonymous said...

Shiloh..I was in on your story from the beginning and nothing makes my heart sing more then to know you are now a beloved member of Jean's pack..Thanks to all of you who helped her..I know it was agonizing for Wendi and K for a few days until she was released to them..blessings to you all ..I have a happy happy heart to-day..
Cheryl K

Laura Carson said...

Oh Wow, welcome home, Shiloh! Her story took me from tears of sadness to tears of joy knowing she's now with you Jean.

King and The Girls said...

Congratulations on being HOME lovely Shiloh! ♥
We can't wait to meet you.
Hugs n tail wags
The Three Pupkateers ermmmmm "Royals" ;-)

Anonymous said...

Welcome home Shiloh!!! I know you will love it at Jean's.
I can't wait to meet you.


Cathy said...

Lucky Shiloh :)

Anonymous said...

how wonderfull' you are' Shiloh is lovely & now will be happy 'healthy so she can relax enjoy so much the rest of her days ' thumbs up for Jean the kind sweet lady ' !! oxPollyb

Anonymous said...

You made me cry Jean as I did when she left for what I knew was the right place. Sweet Shiloh be well.


Anonymous said...

She sure looks like Belle in her photos. Riley and I can't wait to meet her! So glad this girl has found her way to you and will know nothing but love and caring for the rest of her days.

Deb S.

Brigid said...

So glad she's found a home with you, Jean, where she'll find love to the end of her days. We have much to learn from dogs about living in the moment, and for Shiloh, life is good now...

Dom said...

Poor old girl. This post brought me to tears. Thank you for taking her in. She's beautiful.