|Chance's Pet Pardons photo|
This wasn't just any shelter dog... this was a severely injured bait dog.
Most people aren't aware that bait dogs even exist. So, I'll provide a brief explanation... for those of you asking: "What is a bait dog?"
Bait dogs are the most heartbreaking casualty of dog fighting. Basically, the name says it all... these dogs are used as bait... in order to train the fighter dogs how to fight... and kill.
In the early stages of fight training, bait dogs become the prey. With every defense mechanism stripped away, they're rendered completely helpless. Their mouths are taped shut, their legs are bound, and their bodies are restrained. Then, they're thrown into a ring with another dog... who has been trained to kill them.
|Chance at the vet|
Many bait dogs are former fighters, who resisted training or lost in battle. Resistance isn't tolerated. Losers are disposable. And so... the fighters fight... to live another day.
While the bait dogs... can only hope to die today...
Many bait dogs die in the ring. And those are the lucky ones. Because for as long as a bait dog is able to survive the attacks... they'll be subjected to the same mind-numbing torture, over and over and over again.
Often, their limbs hang from their bodies. Their ears are torn off. Their entire snouts are ripped from their faces. Do they receive vet care? No. Are they given pain meds? No. What about compassion? No.
So, if they survive the attack, the pain still isn't over. Survivors are often dumped... to later end up on death row at the animal shelter. For the others, their bleeding bodies will be thrown into a tiny cage, or a small dog kennel, or onto a short chain. They're never fed... because they aren't valued. They're attacked, mutilated... and then starved and neglected. It's the saddest existence I can imagine.
The most heartbreaking part about their reality is this: these precious, tortured souls would gladly endure the unimaginable physical agony... if they could just hear "I love you," when it was over.
But bait dogs will never hear "I love you." They will never experience compassion. They will never know a life without agonizing pain, immense hunger, and complete and total despair.
Unless... we save them.
|I thought the Vet's name was ironic|
Chance has lived his entire life as a bait dog... live bait. He's known more pain in his short time here on Earth... than we could ever imagine in our worst nightmares. And honestly, he shouldn't even be alive today.
His existence has been confined to a chain, within a tiny dog kennel-- a cage of torture. Each day, he was taken from that cage, thrown into a ring of horrors, and viciously mauled. Then... he was thrown back on the chain... and left to bleed to death. They wanted him dead.
But Chance didn't die. He continued to survive...
Only... to end up on death row at the animal shelter.
|Chance & I|
As I opened my mouth to say, "Chris, of course I want to help, but I just don't have room. Maybe we can find someone else to take him..." Chris said, "Just open the link and call me back." Then, he hung up.
I clicked the link... knowing that my heart was about to break... but I wasn't quite prepared for what I was about to see. Because when the page loaded... I saw Riley. My Riley. My own dog, who was also saved from a dog fighting ring. Of course, it wasn't really Riley, but the dog in the picture could be his twin. Chris had obviously realized that... in sending this particular link to me.
I stared at my screen... and tears filled my eyes. Right in front of me, was the sad reality... that so easily could've been my Riley's... if he hadn't been saved. I saw what Riley could've been... without me.
I began to sob, knowing that this dog had survived a lifetime of torture... only to die in an animal shelter. Almost no one would be willing to take a dog in that condition... a former bait dog. No one... but me.
I quickly made a call to an amazing animal rescue friend in the Mobile area, SouthBARK... and with their wonderful help, Chance became a Lucky Dog. Today, he was transported from Alabama to me in Mississippi... to join the ranks of the Lucky. Today... Chance got a second chance.
But I'm more concerned with his heart... with replacing the betrayal and despair with trust and hope. That process started today... and his joy upon arrival was nothing short of incredible.
Because today... for the first time, Chance heard the words, "I love you." And today... for the first time in his life... he got to say, "I love you back."
*Chance will need a lot of vet care on his road to recovery. Please click the link below to help Chance heal.
Chance was saved BECAUSE OF PET PARDONS! We saved another one, y'all!