Lying in front of us was a mess of urine-and-feces-soaked fur. It was writhing with lice and parasites. The stench was almost unbearable. We didn’t know what we were looking at. But whatever it was, it was shaking in terror.
Then we saw a small, frightened eye!
The first order of business was to carefully cut the matted fur so we could see what lay underneath. It took an hour to shave 22-pounds (10 kilos) of fur. Underneath was a 16.8-pound (7.6 kilos) dog! The matted, infected fur weighed nearly a third more than he did!
It was the worst case of neglect the vet had ever seen!
Dr. Dani, the vet on call for Fallen Angels, described the situation as the worst case of neglect she had ever witnessed. She was choked with emotion as Wookiee (named for the hairy creature from Star Wars) was gradually freed from his matted straight jacket of deadly fur.
He yelped in pain as the fur pulled on damaged, infected skin. Every touch was agonizing. It was clear he was deeply traumatized and expecting the worst from us.
Then the vet conducted a thorough medical evaluation. It was not good news: Wookiee suffers from multiple diseases which require immediate and extensive treatment. He has cancer in his mouth that will need surgery and a heart murmur that will make surgery more difficult.
We will probably never know where Wookiee came from, but it was clear he had been fed from time to time, which meant an owner had watched him suffer in an agony for years.
We think Wookiee had somehow escaped but had been caught and waterlogged in a vicious storm that had raged in the area. His matted fur weighed him down so heavily that he collapsed from exhaustion on the road.
Wookiee had been IN TORMENT FOR FOUR YEARS and could not even walk properly.
Poor Wookiee was totally unused to his real weight, his body was so accustomed to the heavy straight jacket of fur, that his little legs flailed around as he tried to walk. The vet said that Wookiee is about four years old, and in all that time, had never been groomed.
Next was a good wash, possibly the first Wookiee had ever had.
Because of supporters like you, we will be able to do our best to help Wookiee.
There is a costly journey of surgery and medication, and a long road of emotional recovery, to come. But we will be at his side, every step of the way, willing him on.
We don’t understand what drives people to make animals suffer like this, but we do know that your donations make it possible for us to save the worst of them. Please, continue to support our critical efforts on the ground, so we can reach animals like Wookiee all over the world.
For the animals,
Brian and Gloria Davies (and Max and Flora!)
Network for Animals
P.S. No creature deserves four years of torment and pain simply because an owner could not be bothered to wash them! We fight cruelty like this every single day, all over the world. We want to save Wookiee and all the other dogs who suffer dreadfully because people can be callous and cruel. Please donate today so that Wookiee will one day have a loving forever home and so we can continue our vital work helping save others like him.