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Animal shelter staff arrive at work, what they find breaks their hearts

Rocky found a new, happier home dog-sad
© Villalobos Rescue Center - Facebook

Staff at an animal shelter in New Orleans, USA, were left heartbroken after a dog was tied up and abandoned outside of their building.

By Ashley Murphy , 29 May 2019

The young pitbull cowered in fear as staff approached, and they noticed a nasty sore on the dog's leg caused by a lead cutting into the skin.

A heartbreaking message

Alongside the poor pooch, staff found a plastic bag full of toys and a dog bowl. It also contained a note from the dog's former owner. It read:

“Meet Rocky: I can’t keep him no more due to personal problems with my family. He has been isolated in my room his whole life as my parents didn’t want him out of the room and on top of that, the landlord didn’t want dogs here. He’s 1 year and 4 months and never had human interaction besides my family so please build his human interaction."


ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS This is what we came into this morning. Another dog tied to our fence but this one came with a note. I guess that was supposed to make us feel better?. Your note says he's NEVER had any human interaction. Your note says he was kept isolated in a room his entire life. Your note says he will EVENTUALLY warm up to you and can be "nervous"...all "key words" that say "he will probably bite you". Thank you for dumping your problem on an already overloaded system here at VRC. But more than likely you called and got our message that said we were SO overwhelmed and that we could not take in anymore dogs at this time. Or maybe you were one of those people that came from out of state and we explained that we had to concentrate on dogs that were local and were no longer able to take dogs from out of state and like so many others, maybe you were one of those that cussed us out because we couldn't take YOUR dog. We care about dogs. That part is obvious. But we also care about over working our employees and having enough dogs to handle both physically and financially and emotionally. We were not the "last resort" were. All you had to do was talk to us and we might have been able to help in other ways. Instead your dog just went from an isolated bedroom to the chaos of a shelter filled with dogs. He is having a meltdown right now and growling and wanting to bite everyone that he sees. We are not miracle workers. We cannot save every dog. We do not have the money or manpower to always "work the magic". But today pushed us over the edge emotionally and physically. These are the days when we hate our job and break down and cry. My mission is to rescue but my hope is that one day, I won't have to....but it looks like that won't be anytime soon.

Posted by Villalobos Rescue Center on Thursday, April 11, 2019

Unfortunately, the centre was already overwhelmed with rescue dogs, and they didn't have the resources to treat such an anxious animal.

Staff posted the story on the centre's Facebook page, hoping that somebody would come to the rescue.

A few days later a man turned up claiming to be the brother of Rocky's former owner. He'd spotted Rocky on social media and recognised him straight away.

"He was overwhelmed with grief," said a spokesperson from the centre. "He had known this ‘Rocky’ since [he was] a puppy and since he no longer lived with his family, he had assumed all was well with the dog."

A happy family reunion

Given the seriousness of Rocky's condition,  the centre was reluctant to release him. However, as soon as they saw the reunion between Rocky and his Uncle, they knew it was the right thing to do!

Rocky is now in a new home. He's no longer confined to a bedroom and is happier than ever before.


UPDATE ON THE "NOTE DOG" A few days ago, so many of you were heartbroken at the sight of a dog tied to our fence with a note from his owner. According to the words written, the dog had been kept isolated from all human contact and was petrified of the world and they could no longer keep him. Honestly, we didn't hold out too much hope for this dog especially now being in a shelter environment. We did not have the means to put this dog anywhere else so that he could decompress and acclumate to the outside world around him. He would not let any of us near him. Then the miracle of social media came into play. The owner's brother saw our post. He was overwhelmed with grief. He had known this "Rocky" since a puppy and since he no longer lived with his family, he had assumed all was well with the dog. Upset at what had happened, he drove to our facility in New Orleans and pleaded with us to let him take the Rocky with him. Within seconds, this dog went from cowering and growling at all of us to recognizing the former owner's brother. Needless to say.....actions speak louder than words. Get our your Kleenex. This is a happy ending worth crying over.

Posted by Villalobos Rescue Center on Sunday, April 14, 2019