Rescued Animal of the Month: Aug 2015:
Each month we will feature a rescued animal success story.
Sydney's Story: Oh where, oh where has my little dog gone?
(Excerpts from newsletters, social media and blogs regarding the search for Sydney)
Our story begins in Puerto Vallarta at PVCA Animal Rescue. We received an email about a dog who appeared to have been in an accident and could be found hidden under a vehicle unable to move. Dedicated animal rescuers Michelle Hall and her husband Andres went to investigate. They found her under a car, frightened and in considerable pain. It was almost impossible to get her out. But with considerable patience and tenderness, Sydney was ultimately safely removed and taken to a local veterinarian for treatment.
The vet determined Sydney had a severe case of arthritis in her back causing such pain she was unable to walk. It was obvious she had had many litters of puppies and, we can only surmise, also received lots of kicks and/or blows to her back which resulted in the arthritis. After her release from the vet’s care, she was brought to the sanctuary where she continued to receive medical attention and lots of love. Her rehabilitation was difficult. It wasn’t so much her physical issues but more her emotional ones. We have no idea how long she may have lived out on the street but it became obvious she had a strong aversion to people.
But after a number of months we really felt she was ready for a permanent, loving home. Off she went to Canada and what we had hoped would be her forever home. We are sad to say, it was not meant to be. After less than 24 hours Sydney was gone.
As the days went by the level of interest in Sydney’s plight touched a lot of people. Tracking dogs were brought to St. Albert in an attempt to locate her. The dogs would occasionally catch Sydney’s scent but the terrain made it difficult to get a fix on her. There was even a canine psychic who spoke to search organizer, Robin McCaffery and relayed a message that Sydney was aware of their efforts but she was doing just fine, thanks! Right now Sydney is managing fine having ample food and water as well as a temperate climate. This won’t last for too much longer, however. Once summer turns to fall and fall turns into winter, the temperatures drop way below freezing and we know Sydney won’t make it left on her own.
One thing that we have learned in the past 7 months is that Alberta has many, many kind hearted, and caring animal lovers. I would, however, like to express a very special thanks to some very dedicated groups of people who are committed to improving the lives of companion animals within our communities. Within hours of Sydney's disappearance in St. Albert many people began to search individually to assist in bringing this little dog home. It became apparent that the help of many would be required to save Sydney. Local rescues were very quick to offer resources to assist in the recovery of Sydney. Despite they, themselves, being overwhelmed with the incredible responsibility of caring for and rescuing many stray and injured animals in various communities, so many offered to help. This help came in various forms: offering advice and support, loaning supplies (humane traps), providing resources (food, volunteers), organizing searches (with tracking dogs, maps, volunteers), or sharing Sydney's story. This help came without compensation, and was motivated only by the desire to help an extremely scared and lonely dog, who knew nothing of Alberta terrain, territory, weather or predators. They helped because they care deeply for the welfare of all companion animals. I would like to express extreme gratitude to Alberta Lost Pet Locator and Rescue Society, Duke and Duchess Animal Rescue, HART Humane Animal Rescue Team, A.R.T.S (Animal Rescue Transfer System)Second Chance Animal Rescue Society, Barrhead Animal Rescue Society, Rescue for Life, Zoe's Animal Rescue Society and Charlee's Angels for the Animals.
A big day at the Parkland County Animal Shelter as Sydney was located in Entwistle (approximately 100 kilometers from St. Albert!) after going missing seven months ago. She had been there for awhile, and several people and a dog named RJ worked endlessly to feed her, befriend her and ultimately capture her. They saved her from the one thing Sydney could not face alone...the cold. Parkland Animal Shelter cared amazingly for her until we could positively identify her and start the next part of her journey home. St. Albert Animal Clinic donated their services and provided much needed medical care and attention and supplies, including a long overdue bath. Her coat was covered in sap, she smelled of skunk, and was stiff, tired and sore, but remarkably healthy. Team Sydney, is comprised of so many who searched day and night, gave of themselves and their resources. They came from St. Albert and many surrounding communities. They searched forests in the dark and the cold, they left food out, displayed signs and delivered flyers. They used social media to increase awareness and share her story. They are a group of amazing people who wanted nothing more than to help a scared, lonely little dog get her second chance. It would be impossible to name everyone, without leaving someone out, so to you all I say THANK YOU. It is this combined effort of a group of dedicated animal lovers that saved Sydney, that gave her this chance to finally know the love, warmth and security a home can provide. Her life of loneliness, cold, neglect and abuse is over. This search has shown that despite facing immense odds, with will and determination and the help of many, miracles will happen. To those of you who continue to search for lost pets, let Sydney's story help you keep the faith that your loved ones will also make it home safely. Love and best wishes to all who shared her story and who celebrate this day with us all.
For more information on Sydney's story, please go to: Facebook / SavingSydney