This is what animal rescue is all about: FREEDOM
The pictures were clear and showed an unequivocal case of animal cruelty and neglect. The dog was living inside a mud and stone hut, never getting out, surrounded by filth, excrement and garbage. A concerned citizen took pictures and reported the case to the authorities. This being Spain, nothing happened. The dog, a female, belonged to a hunter, and that’s how hunters keep their dogs. It is accepted. It is legal. Rarely anyone bothers doing something about it, and only in the most extreme cases can one expect any conviction of at most a couple of hundred euros.
So there I was, looking at those pictures and imagining what this poor animal was enduring, day after day, night after night. I imagined the nights spent in solitude, howling desperately yearning for human connection. Nights filled with calls for assistance but noone came except for throwing some more garbage in.
We had to do something about it. But what?
And then I remembered Martin Luther King‘s words, written at a time of struggle in the fight for civil rights and understood. Freeing this dog was going to be a test of commitment and resolve. It was also going to remind us why it is we do what we do.
The dog’s situation was critical, time was of the essence, with every passing day and week her condition worsened.
“Rescue without owner’s consent” to avoid irreparable damage and loss of life. An act comparable to breaking the window of a car parked under the scorching heat to save the life of a couple of kids being cooked alive inside it.
“Rescue without owner’s consent”. I liked those words.
We didn’t think about it for much longer. We drove to the location and did what had to be done, with adrenaline pounding through our veins, concerned but certain that we were doing the right thing.
Three short videos, unedited, raw, full of emotion. The very essence of animal rescue.
At a time when most animal rescuers use social media as their primary rescue tool this was going different. Law was going to be broken in the name of justice.
I hope for nothing. I fear for nothing. I am free.
We have called her Freedom. We couldn’t find a better name.
As expected Freedom was totally neglected, undocumented, unvaccinated, she had no microchip, she had no legal owner. This was basically a case where she had been imprisoned and tortured in hell.
We took care of legalities, for the first time in her life Freedom had a legal owner. For the first time in her life, Freedom experienced the kind, soft touch of a human hand, a soothing voice telling her she would be ok. She was bathed, thousands of fleas and other parasites fell out of her. We did a battery of tests that made us realize her weakened condition and confirmed Erlichiosis and a incipient level of Leishmania for which she immediately began treatment. And then, for her own security, Freedom was whisked out of the city, to an entirely different region altogether where she will be cared and protected like the most precious of treasures, until the right family is found for her.
So, today we have a double request… we need your help with her ongoing medical treatment for both Erlichiosis and Leishmania. She can be cured, but it will take a while until she is totally recovered.
We also need help with the treatment of her behavioral issues, mainly separation anxiety. Imagine for a second having spent all your life locked in a hole and then being freed. I suppose Freedom can be a scary thing to one that never experienced it.
UPDATE DECEMBER 5
FREEDOM HAS BEEN ADOPTED.
The dog that lived prisoner in a dirty hut full of garbage and excrement now lives a happy live with a wonderful family and a dogie brother that will make sure nothing ever happens to her for as long as she lives.
Freedom now finally gets to experience the meaning of her name.
Help Let’s Adopt! Global continue rescuing dogs and other animals in the same conditions as Freedom was found. There is LOTS of work to do.. let’s do it!!!