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See the heart-breaking photo that saved this dog’s life

This dog found a happy ending after a photo of her weeping went viral.
© High Plains Humane Society - Facebook

A New Mexico stray scored a second shot at happiness when a photo of her weeping in a shelter cage went viral. The City of Portales Animal Shelter was inundated with applications to adopt her, one of which turned out to be the forever family the dog deserved.

By G. John Cole, 29 Jul 2019

High Plains Humane Society’s stated purpose is to “reduce animal cruelty, exploitation, and neglect.” Part of their strategy is to use social media to spread the news about rescued pups who need a home.

The City of Portales shelter in New Mexico is one of their associated organizations, and the dog in question put on quite a performance when the photographers came to town.

She was pictured peering through the blood-red bars of a cage, with her head tilted like Lady Diana. Her paws clutch at the bars as though begging for freedom. A damp patch on the cage floor hints at the squalor of her everyday existence. And the winning stroke? The single tear emerging from the corner of her eye.

The shelter posted the image on Facebook and immediately began to receive dozens of calls and – soon - hundreds of applications, before they finally found the perfect human mother for ‘Tiny Tears.’

Dog tear science

Of course, dogs don’t actually cry tears of sadness. Dogs express their sadness through whimpering or howling. A dog who sheds tears probably has an eye health problem such as cherry eye, an infection, or a bit of stuck dirt. Although having dirt in her eye might also make her sad, she cries only to clean the dirt out - not to wash the sadness away.

The dogs that the High Plains Humane Society photographs are not always the perfect catalogue models, but they are always lovable creatures with hearts of gold – and truly deserving of a second shot at happiness.