Be a Responsible Pet Owner by Denise Comfort

Be a Responsible Pet Owner by Denise Comfort

Denise Comfort states, “I’m not much of a writer.” The story she sent True Friends Animal Welfare Center proves her wrong. This is a wonderfully heartwarming story with a happy ending. Perfect for the start of a new year!

I think I was 11 years old when this occurred, it would have been sometime in the 1970’s. My family and I lived in Springville, Pennsylvania. We had moved there from Bucks County when I was 9.

My family loved “all animals”, we moved there because of our horse named “George”. The zoning laws had changed in Bucks County and if we didn’t move we would have had to give him up so, we moved.

Within the 1st year of moving to Springville, we quickly acquired other pets and some farm animals. We had brought with us 2 dogs, 1 cat, and George. We all lived on the14 acres of land we had purchased.

Unknown to my father some pigs became “our pets”. We gave all the animals names, the pigs, the bull, and the ducks. My father had a very hard time getting his way. They were being raised for food, but he forgot, he had 2 daughters, 1 son, and a wife that all had difficultly using animals for food, especially now that they were considered pets! He quickly figured that out.

One freezing cold winter morning, I had gone outside, I don’t even remember why. Probably to feed the horses, we now had 2, on my way back to the house, something made me look up to the road. It was so cold my eyes were watery and blurry. I thought I was seeing things, something that looked like a walking body of sagging skin and bones, was stumbling its way down the road.

I quickly made my way through the snow up the road to find a scratched, tattered eared, starving, (belly sunken in so it looked like she had two halves to her body), Bassett Hound. Her eyes and nose were running and had ice frozen.

I couldn’t even believe she could stand let alone walk. I quickly scooped her up and ran back to our home. Crying terribly, I brought her in to my mother. We didn’t have a car and my father worked in Philadelphia during the week, so he was not home at the time. Without a car we couldn’t take her immediately to the vet.

We grabbed blankets and wrapped her up and set her right on top the heating vent. My mother cooked up a broth of some kind and using what I think was a turkey baster, we slowly managed to get some into her. After some time, she started to come around, and so my mom started to clean her wounds up. Her poor ears were so cut and tattered they would never be the same again. She made sure to clean them all really good, and some even got Band-Aids.

We all took turns watching her, but because I found her I formed a really strong bond with her. That night, my mom wouldn’t let me take her into my bed with me, so I slept on the floor beside her. I was told if she made it through the weekend when my father came home and could take her to the vet and the vet said she was going to be ok then I could name her.

As far as I was concerned there was no question we were going to keep her. Again my father had no choice. And this time he knew not even to try to object. After some much needed antibiotics, and worming medication, and some good food to put weight on her she quickly blossomed.

I named her Nellie. Once she started to fill out, we thought, “…gosh, we must be feeding her too much?” She was getting quite fat. Here we discover our Nellie was pregnant! I don’t know why the vet didn’t catch that, but she was definitely pregnant.

Not long after we made out discovery, Nellie became a Mommie to 5 of the cutest little Bassett babies, ears so long you could literally wrap them around their little bodies. She was such a loving, sweet girl. Unfortunately, my mother and father ended up getting a divorce. We had to move back to Bucks County and had to find homes for most of our pets. Nellie was one of them. I believe she went to a good home, the family that took her were friends of ours. I believe she was in a good place, but I never saw her again after that.

Nellie went from being abused, abandoned, starving, sick and a mere shadow of herself, to a healthy, loving, Mommie, (she was spayed as soon as possible after the babies were born), but she was an excellent Mommie and a really a great dog!

Our Nellie was one of the lucky ones, PLEASE be a responsible pet owner. Don’t get a pet unless you are prepared to take care of its ever need, bring you pet in during inclement weather and PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE spay/neuter!

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