A Senior’s Journey Home
Back in August, Worthy Dog Rescue rescued a senior dog, Mo, who had been living on a chain in isolation for nearly all of his ten years. This sweet dog had never been loved as part of a family, or given a proper diet or veterinary care. When our rescuers found him, Mo was covered in fleas and moaning in discomfort; he had become anemic and developed a severe allergic reaction to the flea bites, losing large chunks of his coat and a lot of weight too. He was barely hanging on, and living without shelter during the peak heat of summer.
One of our South Carolina volunteers, Alicia Schwartz, had been in contact with Mo’s family and took action. Their local Worthy Dog team had supported Mo’s family over the years, getting him neutered through a local spay and neuter clinic, and helping the family with food and shelter when times were tough. They even built a fence next to the home for Mo, in an effort to get him off the chain and have him more connected to the family. Several months later, they returned to find the fence removed and Mo in really bad shape, once again tethered to a tree. Thankfully, with some pleading, Mo’s owners finally agreed to surrender him to Worthy Dog, ending his life of suffering.
After few nights of critical care at the animal hospital, Mo went to his foster home. Dogs who have been chained and isolated most of their lives often need time to transition to home life. They haven’t had a normal bond or relationship with humans, or experienced being a member of a family, but we quickly discovered that even after the years of abandonment, Mo was still a sweet, lovable dog who adored people.
Mo quickly transitioned to his new life and really blossomed in his foster home, receiving plenty of TLC from his foster mom, Chris. He put on weight, and with a healthy diet and daily walks, his coat began to fill in, and he became the active, playful dog he was always meant to be. During his time with her, Chris discovered Mo’s passion for squeaky toys and playing fetch, and his love for exploring on their walks, rolling around in the grass, and enjoying the fresh air and sunshine. It was a remarkable recovery made possible through the loving care of his foster mom.
As a senior dog who had lived outdoors for so many years without any flea and tick preventative, it was no surprise that Mo was heartworm positive. He was also a senior and has a black coat, all factors that made his adoption even less likely. Mo was in foster care for about four months when we received an application from Brenda that sounded ideal.
Brenda had adopted a senior Lab in the past, who had also lived on a chain most of his life, and knew what to expect. She knew she wanted to adopt another deserving senior, and when Brenda met Mo it was love at first sight. With Brenda, Mo not only found his new home, but he got an incredible mom who adores him and takes him to work with her every day, a new pup sister, Phoebe, who has become his best friend, and a huge back yard to romp and play in.
After Mo’s first night home, Brenda sent us this note:
I am so happy with Mo!!! He is absolutely a sweetheart!!! I am so blessed to be the one who finally gives him a home with warmth, freedom, and love!…[I] would love for others to know the joy of adopting a senior…Mo is totally happy and so active, everybody that sees him thinks he’s a puppy (except for the gray whiskers!). I think he dances when he walks as he just prances and bounces along.
We are so happy for Mo and excited that after ten long, hard years, he’s finally found peace and comfort in a loving home. We’re thankful for people like Brenda who will give a senior dog the love they deserve, and a comfortable home to live out their golden years. We are thankful for our rescue partners in SC who stayed committed to Mo and secured his release, and to his foster mom, Chris, who helped him make an easy transition to home life.
We need more foster moms like Chris to help us continue to save deserving dogs like Mo. Fostering is the foundation of our rescue, and our foster families are indispensable assets who are just regular people who generously open their homes to provide a roof and some TLC to save these dogs’ lives. We can only save as many dogs as we have foster families to take them in, and any foster family will tell you that fostering is a rewarding experience that has a tangible, direct impact on saving a dog’s life.
Special thanks to Jennifer Cody of Egomedia for her great photos of Mo.