End animal suffering in KCMO urban core

by Chain of Hope KC
Vetted

Disclaimer:  this report contains a graphic photograph that may be difficult to view.. 

Chain of Hope recieved a call just after the 4th of July.  In an unimaginable act of cruelty, someone had thrown M-80 firecrackers at a dog, whom we later named Helen.  We never determined who did this unspeakable act, but concerned neighbors did their best to keep track of her.  She took off and hid...of course.  She was a spotted week or so later and was caught, lured by food.  She was starving, having been out scavenging with severe injuries.  We could not imagine the pain she was in.   We sought medical attention immediately.  One of Helen's paws was severly damaged, and felt likely would have to be amputated.  It also apparent she had lost most if not all her hearing and vision, and an eye was badly damaged

We are contiually amazed at the resilience of these animals who go through hell and back, only to be able to give and recieve affection by another human after one had so horribly mistreated them. 

But resilient she was!  Helen transferred to a foster home where over weeks she started to heal.  She lost one eye, but regained vision in her other.  Her hearing returned, and the paw that we thought she would lose, healed remarkably well.

Helen just after arriving at Chain of Hope
Helen just after arriving at Chain of Hope
after eye surgery
after eye surgery
amazing recovery
amazing recovery
Sweet, beautiful Helen...
Sweet, beautiful Helen...
Gabby at the emergency clinic
Gabby at the emergency clinic

Chain of Hope received a call from an owner saying his dog was sick, not eating, he had no money to care for him and did not know what to do.  We took Gabby to the vet.  She was examined and was obviously dehydrated, very thin, so given fluids.  She was checked for PARVO, but the test was negative.  Gabby was sent home.  The owner called again about a week later and said she was no better, actually worse.  We went to see her and thought she would not make it; her condition was far worse.  The owner surrendered Gabby to Chain of Hope and we took her to the emergency clinic imediately.  She was there for a couple days, running tests as she continued to deteriorate.  She could not eat, was vomiting, and so very weak she could not stand.  We really thought we would lose her.  The recommendation was finally exploratory surgery; the only way to see what may be going on.  Gabby had a piece of a corn cob lodged in her intestine!  Her organs were shutting down.  She had been living outside and  we now knew she was likely just eating scraps.  It  remained touch and go for a couple weeks while Gabby regained her strength.  But boy did she ever !  Gabby is about one of the most resiliant dogs we have seen.  Had Chain of Hope not interveined Gabby would have died a horrible, slow painful death.   Gabby did not give up and neither did we.  We don't.  We keep looking, keep educating, keep saving, keep ending misery every day.  And that is only possible because the support of our donors.  We thank you.  Gabby thanks you !

Ready for her forever home
Ready for her forever home
The shed they were hiding under
The shed they were hiding under

We got  a call from Rosa, a woman in the community,  on a momma dog with 2 puppies living under a shed in her neighbor's back yard.  This was in an area we don't usually serve, but she said she had called everywhere and no one said they could help her. So we loaded up our traps, a net, a crate and hot dogs to try and lure them in.  As soon as those pups saw us approaching the yard they ran under the shed.  We saw no sign of momma.  We started trying to lure the puppies out with food, but it wasn’t really working. After awhile, momma showed up in the yard next door.  She kept her distance with a close eye on her pups.  The house was abandonded.  This little family was scared, had been on their own, and only had each other.   

We set up the big trap in the yard with momma, and the small trap by the shed with the pups.  With the traps baited with smelly food, we retreated to the van. It wasn’t long until we heard the familiar noise of the trap slamming shut.  Momma was in the trap!  She must have been starving.  We had been there working on this situation for about 1 1/2 hours so we were thrilled. Now with momma in the trap, we could more easily get the babies.

Momma was VERY agitated and upset. The moms are difficult to work with because they are so protective of their babies-which they should be.  She began slamming herself against the sides of the trap and pushing and clawing at one of the front corners and all of the sudden, it broke and momma shot off!   We were devastated. This had never happened to us before and we were heart broken.

We knew momma would not come near that trap again, so we turned our attention to the puppies. The clearance under the shed was maybe 6 inches. The puppies were smack dab in the middle where we couldn’t reach.  We worked for  hours and had to finally call it a day. We had upset all of them and knew they needed to settle back down. This back yard was secluded, so we were able to leave our traps, net and crate there. We tripped the traps until we could come back. Rosa worked over night so no one would be able to hear the pups if they got trapped. 

 A couple days later Rosa called and she had the puppies !  She figured out how to set the trap, they got in at the same time and now she had them secured in her back yard !  We headed over to get them.  They were so scared you could see it on their faces.  This was likely the first time they had ever been touched by human hands ever. We fed and watered them and put them in a nice big crate with lots of blankets and covered them up and let them be. This was the beginning of their new life.

Ever so slowly they started to come around, we took care of their medical needs, then were able to move them to a foster home.  With very patient foster parents, day by day, little by little, Ester and June started to trust; helped out a lot by their canine foster brother and sister.  You could just see the change in their their eyes as they grew more confident. 

Ester and June will soon be in a forever home, but we haven't and won't forget about Momma.  We will keep trying.  And all this is possible because of support from our donors.  Boots on the ground, saving lives, one dog at a time.

after they were trapped, so scared!
after they were trapped, so scared!
Confident and ready for their forever home!
Confident and ready for their forever home!
walking with foster sis
walking with foster sis
encouragement from foster brother
encouragement from foster brother
Cleveland before
Cleveland before

One person can single handedly destroy an animal's life, but it often takes a village to save it.   It was a mail carrier that spotted Cleveland, alone, starving, chained at an abandonded house.  But that mail carrier had a phone number.  Maybe he got it from another carrier who knew about Chain of Hope, maybe he saw our number on a dog house given to a dog in the neighborhood, maybe he saw a story on the news.  However he got it, he did, and  he called, and Cleveland's life was saved.  Chain of Hope responded immediately.  It was apparent that Cleveland had been there, without care, for awhile.  He was starving, dehydrated, had sores on his ears and his skin was in horrible shape.  Whoever may have lived there did not care for him, but to a dog, chained to a house, when they were there, it was all they knew.  Every time their person comes and goes, or they hear something, or see a light on, they wait.  They wait for that person to provide care, food, and simply acknowledge their existence.  Cleveland may have spent his entire life waiting, only to one day no longer see anyone come or go, to hear nothing, to see nothing, still waiting.  Until he saw a big white van pull up, and people got out, gave him  food, loved on him, told him this was the best day of his life.  He settled in at Chain of Hope with more food, fresh water, and a soft warm bed.  The next day on to the vet to get medical care. And in between, and for the next few days, he sleeps, because for the first time in perhaps his entire life he isn't hungry, he isn't cold, he doesn't have to be on guard, and he isn't afraid.  Our village makes that possible...that mail carrier, our Director, people who donate food, people who give money, our local media who tells the community our story, our volunteers who put fundraisers together, or walk the dogs, or repair the fence, or scoop poop out of the yards, our foster families who put their life on hold and rehabilitate and nurture these animals back to life, and our adoptive families who give them a new one.  We thank you for making our work possible.  Cleveland thanks you!

the house where he was abandonded
the house where he was abandonded
Ready and waiting for his forever home
Ready and waiting for his forever home
Penny living the good life
Penny living the good life

Penny captured the hearts of so many when Chain of Hope rescued her.  Like so many dogs Chain of Hope sees, Penny was a Pit Bull that a family took in, then when they grew tired or it was too much trouble, passed her on to another family member or friend.  Penny was an old gal by the time Chain of Hope entered her life, living is a small pen, outside, with neighbors reporting she would start to cry every night after dark until someone came out of the house and gave her food.    No attention, no love, just enough to sustain her in the these horrible conditions.  Her ears were bloody from fly strikes in the summer, but in one and a half years, the outreach team saw the owners only once, despite calls, and leaving information to call for help.  We noticed some lumps on Penny's body, monitored those, offered medical assistance, but still nothing from the owner.   We checked in with the neighbors when we brought supplies and did what we could to make Penny feel loved, that someone knew about her, checked in on her, and would not let her just fall through the cracks.  We kept going and watched as the situation grew worse.  Finally, the authorities stepped in and impounded Penny when we reported finding the floor of her pen completely covered in feces and filth, only to return her two days later when the pen was cleaned up!  After this we were able to interveine with the owner, and by this time the lumps we had seen for so long were much worse.  We took Penny for medical care and learned she had cancer.  We did not know how long she had and could not bear to see her return to that environment to die.  After learning the prognosis the owner agreed to surrender her.  Finally her suffering was over.  The cancer was too far advanced so we provided hospice for Penny.  It was only  5 weeks, but the very best  weeks of her life.   She loved to roll in the grass, get her belly rubbed, settle in to a soft, dry, warm bed at night.  She loved toys, playing with other dogs, and going for walks, and was never ever hungry again.  But mostly she loved being loved, cared for, even in her very last moments, she was held in loving arms as she left this life.  Your support made that happen and we thank you.

Penny in her dog house with straw provided by COH
Penny in her dog house with straw provided by COH
her tumors
her tumors
never again
never again
 

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Organization Information

Chain of Hope KC

Location: Raytown, MO - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.chainofhopekc.org
Project Leader:
Susan Jones
Raytown, Missouri United States
$19,245 raised of $25,000 goal
 
604 donations
$5,755 to go
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