Guess who this dog is? It’s Cowboy, the dog whose teeth were sawed to the gumline so he could be a bait dog for dog fighting. He came to a rescue in terrible condition, shy, sweet, paying attention only to a tennis ball someone had given him.
Great news! The couple who fostered him has fallen in love with him and will be keeping him! Karin Springfield and her beau, Sam, wrote a comment a few days back saying this: “We were Cowboy’s foster family and now we are his forever family! We indeed are the lucky ones to be blessed enough to have a dog with such an incredible spirit in our lives! Despite all that he has been through, he is a very loving and sweet boy. We will spend the rest of his life spoiling him and making it up to him for all the cruelty he suffered. (He’s curled up on the couch between us sleeping right now:)). “
I followed up with her, because of how deeply Cowboy’s story touched many of us. I asked her how she came to foster Cowboy, and to let us know how Cowboy is doing, and send a few photos. Cowboy is a much-loved lap dog. I’ll intersperse some photos with her notes.
“We are all so grateful for the outpouring of love and concern for this little guy! We learned about Cowboy through a Facebook post. A friend of mine works at Pets Inc. and will often post pictures and stories of animals who need a home. Cowboy’s picture tugged at my boyfriend’s and my hearts. We went to visit him that day and became his fosters. I wasn’t 100% sure I wanted to adopt a dog at that time because I had put my 13 year old dog to sleep just a month prior. We fell in love with him right away:).
“He is so sweet and loving! It didn’t take him long to settle in to being spoiled:). We are treating him for heartworms and other parasites, but amazingly he’s full of energy a good bit of time….especially in his wagging tail:). We are treating the wounds on his nose and legs, and they are healing. He doesn’t need immediate surgery on his mouth, but will probably need it in the future. They would need to remove the nubs and roots to prevent him from getting infections in his gums. Pets Inc. is still raising money for his future dental care, as well as equipment to perform oral surgery on future dogs in need.” (Note from Maria: You can call Pets, Inc. at 803-739-9333 to donate money for Cowboy’s oral surgery. Alternatively, heres a general donation page for Pets, Inc.)
“Other than that he’s getting lots of food to help him put weight back on. He has to eat canned food due to his teeth issue. He is an enthusiastic eater:)! He’s missing patches of hair, but we believe they will grow back as he becomes healthier and gains weight.
“He is adapting wonderfully to a loving home. It’s just my boyfriend and I, and we already love him more than words can describe! He loves to be petted, loves to give kisses, and loves to cuddle on the couch with us. His resiliant spirit is an inspiration to us! Despite all that was done to him, he’s so full of love.”
“I haven’t heard of any leads regarding the people who subjected him to such unspeakable cruelty. We will make sure from now on he only knows love and happiness. He still is fascinated with a tennis ball, but he has a bunch of other toys that he also loves….but balls are definitely his favorite. I believe as he gets more settled in, he’ll become less and less anxious. I’ve already seen great improvements in that area. He doesn’t have to have a toy at all times like he did when he first moved in. Thanks again for checking up on him. Rest assured that he will receive all the love and happiness he deserves for the rest of his life:).”
I asked Karin about the picture of Cowboy at the pet store, and about swimming, and her previous dog who had died so recently. Here’s what she wrote.
“The picture of Cowboy and Sam was taken at Pets Inc. the day of his adoption:). We too were surprised that he is a lap dog, but he LOVES to nap in one of our laps. Luckily, I’m a teacher so I have a few more weeks to spend lots of time letting him nap in my lap before school starts back:). We did pick him up a wading pool because the people at Pets Inc. talked about how much he loved their pool. He loves to play with the water as it comes out of the hose…very much a playful pup when he gets around water:). My 13 year old dog was a Fila. She got sick suddenly, and after two days of tests they concluded she had a tumor that either ruptured or was blocking her stomach:(. Everything started shutting down in her system. aking that decision to put her to sleep was the hardest right decision I’ve ever had to make. So you see, I believe Cowboy has helped us as much as we’ve helped him.”
What a happy ending for Cowboy! It doesn’t get any better than this. Here’s to Karin and Sam! And of course, to Cowboy, who is such a dear heart despite the terrible abuse he was put through.
(Dogsters, I’m enroute back to San Francisco after a super great research trip for my book, Soldier Dogs. This will be the only post of the day, because of my convoluted flight path home. Since I had time for only one post today, I thought I’d make it a super uplifting one. 🙂 )