The following was written by a friend of mine whose life was completely changed the minute she adopted a rescue dog from our local Animal Shelter.
What my friend wrote so touched my heart that I felt I had to share it, and by doing so, hopefully it will give a true insight as to what it is really like for dogs who are abused by thoughtless and cruel people who use them to produce puppies time after time after time – which they then sell for big profits. All driven by the mighty dollar of course, with no thought to the welfare of the poor animal who they allow to become malnourished and are left to live in unimaginable filth.
Take it away Kaye
Thank you one and all. Kaye, Thomas & Reika
“Here-under is a short story written by my sweet little rescue girl Reika.
She implores that people be aware of animal abuse, and urges you to support the cause by either donating a little of your time, your finances, or by adopting a refuge animal from your nearest Animal Welfare Centre.
(The story below is fiction, but there are some very accurate accounts of the background Reika had before she was rescued)”
A RESCUE DOG’S ACCOUNT OF LIFE: By Reika Edwards-Crandall
My first memory is of a place that was dirty. It had dog faeces and urine everywhere and a very tattered piece of blanket for a bed. The water dish was empty a lot of the time, and you had to be quick to get any food from the meagre amount given out to 6 dogs (including my mother) who were locked in a small pen in a backyard.
I was taken out occasionally for a walk, and sometimes the children would play with me, as long as they didn’t get bored. I remember being tossed in a blanket playfully when I was only 6 months old, and caught by the children, only to be thrown up in the air again, terrified they were going to miss me and I would land on the ground.
My life until I first came into heat was smitten with dribs and drabs of attention, but when I came into season for the first time, I was taken away from the rest and placed in a yard with another dog I had never seen. I was left with him for the day and the mating was complete. I spent the next months in the pen starting to feel my belly swell and the puppies come to life.
There were no special treats, and each day ran into the other. I was occasionally allowed into the house which I adored, but if I made a mess of any kind, I was kicked and thrown back in the pen. I soon learned not to mess in the house.
My First Lot of Babies
My babies were born, 3 in all, and I loved them. I was still a puppy myself, and it was a very painful experience trying to feed them and keep them all happy. They drained me of my energy, and I didn’t get any extra food to supplement my weakness. I had no energy as it was being sucked out of me. At 5 weeks my babies were taken from me, and I was thrown back into the communal pen. My mother was no longer there, and I found out later that she had died of malnutrition as she could not conceive again and was not useful any more.
The same thing again, sometimes with the children, (whom I loved) and occasionally in the house (which I loved) and then I started bleeding again. I was only 18 months old, and already on my second lot of babies. My body was so thin my backbone was showing and my nipples extending so far they almost reached the floor.
My Second Lot of Babies
Only two this time, and I found it difficult producing milk to feed them, and they sucked at my nipples until they were red raw and so very painful.
I became ill, and then was taken into the house and put into a box in the laundry, and for the first time I tasted milk. The lady of the house tried to open my mouth to put tablets in, and I didn’t like it, so, she tied my head to a post and forced my mouth open with a rasp and put the tablet in, leaving me tied up for punishment.
I vaguely remember the next few weeks, coming in and out of consciousness, and getting up only to drink some water, then sleep again. I had lost so much weight, and I could barely get the strength to walk.
Finally, I managed to get some food into me again, and I regained a little strength. In all this time I had never seen a “doctor” and only got the occasional love from the children, but when I wasn’t playful, they soon tired of me.
When I could walk again I was thrown into the yard. For the first time I was not locked in the pen. To me it was freedom. I could explore all over the yard, the exciting things in the grass, the different smells, and for the first time I felt some happiness in the freedom it allowed me.
I bled again. The third time in my life, and I was in the yard. Before I knew it, I was looking at this HUGE dog coming toward me. I was terrified. He ran over to me, and with one paw he could knock me over. OH MY, how it hurt.. and I was left torn apart and laying in a pool of blood.
It took me a long time to start to have some feeling. In that time my belly started to extend to an abnormal size, and it kept growing and growing. The size of my tiny body was massive, and the pain and discomfort in walking was excruciating. When my mistress saw that I was so extended, I heard her saying that I was having mongrel pups and they would be no good for selling.
My Third Lot of Babies
My body was so swollen and I could barely walk. When it came time to deliver, the babies ripped my private parts to pieces. I pushed and pushed, and I can’t explain the pain. Finally, I delivered two puppies, almost half my size each. My mistress came out and saw me laying next to them, unable to give them milk to nourish them. My body ripped and my small frame emaciated. She was with my master, who I seldom saw, and I heard her say, “she is no good to us any more, we may as well be rid of her”.
Thrown away like a piece of garbage
He agreed, and that evening he came and picked me up and put me into the back seat of the car. We drove for about ten minutes while I was shivering in pain. I felt him reach over the back and pick me up… Oh my goodness, human contact, it was so nice.. I wagged my tail and wanted to lick him all over. Suddenly I felt a cool breeze on my face, and the next thing I know I was thrown out the car window right in the middle of a street full of cars going every which way. My master drove off, and that was the last I saw of him.
I was terrified, and ran through traffic, cars screeching and swerving, and I managed to get to the side of the road. I remember leaning against a fence. My heart beating so fast and my fear so great that I had forgotten my pain. All I could do was sit there shivering.
Daylight came. And as I looked down there was blood in a pool where I was sitting. People were walking by, and I wanted to get up and run, but I could not move.
Someone Cares about me!
Suddenly, a pair of hands picked me up, and I don’t remember much else until I came to and found myself with a lot of people in a clinic with people fussing and talking to me like I was special. There was a lovely man saying sweet things to me, and the gentle pats and love I felt for the first time was overwhelming.
I remained in this place for a few days. I was put to sleep, woken up, and felt these hard pieces of nylon in my tummy, but all the time there were lovely people around, cuddling and talking and ever so gentle. I was taken from this clinic and put into a pen with a few other companions my size. We had plenty of food, water and visits and walks and drives in the car, and love.
After a couple of weeks of this, I was shifted to another place, with 2 companions surrounded by other pens.. There was a lot of barking, and a lot of people coming up and down the aisle outside. Every day there was companionship and love given. I started to become a little trusting again.
A few days went by, and each day was better than the next. I got on with my mates, and always had the attention of what they called “volunteers” who would pick me up, talk to me and love me. Oh how I gave back the love with heaps of tail wags and kisses.
I Meet My New Family!
One day, (I will call it the best day of my life), I remember feeling very ill with a cough, and sitting at the back of the pen, when I saw this lady and man looking at me. She was in a chair with wheels, and she was pointing at me, talking to the man. They left for a very short time, and were back again. The pen door opened, and the girl who had given me cuddles came in and picked me up.
Love at first sight
She placed me in this lady’s arms, and when I looked at her face, she had tears running down her face. What could I do but lick them all off and cuddle into her to make her feel better. When I looked up at the man, he wet me with his tears falling on top of me.
Silly humans, they were saying they were so happy, and that I am THE ONE, and all sorts of jibber jabber while they were crying and laughing at the same time.
My name is Reika. I have a past. My past does not matter.
Today, I have a future
I have a future with love, with care, with everything I never imagined possible, and how can one little dog explain what it feels like to have a heart that is bursting with all the love I have to give my new mummy and daddy.
I am one of the lucky ones. And I would love everyone to be able to give one of my fellow canines or felines, either a new home, or at least some hope for medical attention and the chance of a new life with a new family.
From your friend always,
REIKA xxxx ♥
Good pals share their toys
Thank you Kaye and Reika for sharing your story with us.
It’s been three years now since Reika was adopted by my friend and her husband, and it was the best thing that happened to all of them. In spite of being treated so badly by humans in the past, Reika has regained her trust in humans and just hangs out to be loved – and she gives it back in abundance! She is beautiful, fits right in with her new family and we all fell in love with her. She is also a lively playmate for Poppy when we visit and take them both walkies in the park.
Please – Adopt, don’t Shop.
You can make a big difference to the life of the dog (or cat) that you choose