Why do we fight every day for the dogs? Because for every Daphne that makes it out of a mill and into rescue, there are thousands of dogs who just die. Die from untreated illness, die because they’ve lost their will to live…. or die at the hands of their mill keeper. Daphne’s story shows the heartbreak rescuers go through trying to save the sick dogs, the broken dogs. As we celebrate Daphne’s adoption day into a forever family that will love her like she deserves to be loved, let’s remember the thousands of Daphne’s that don’t make it…. and do what we can to make it stop for them too.
Here is Daphne’s Story… as told by her foster mom.
A LETTER TO MY FOSTER DOG
We have been through so much together, starting with seeing photos of you on your craigslist ad being sold once again. This was not the first time you were being sold, we tried one time before to rescue you but you were sold too fast to another mill owner. We watched and waited and it wasn’t that much longer that you were for sale again and we leaped into action to get your safely into rescue this time.
Your first angel was Molli in AR who rushed to get you. She worked her magic with Pilots and Paws and you were to meet more angels that day- pilots who donated their time, love, planes and money to get you safely to me. I remember being anxious as your flights were delayed as I waited anxiously to finally meet you and my heart lifted when the final flight of your journey landed. A wonderful man and woman gently unloaded you from their plane along with the other dogs being saved that day. So skinny and your skin so sad looking, yet even though you were stingy with your kisses- you had one for me and one for your pilot.
You were named by one of the young daughters of the first pilot of your flight- Daphne and it is a name that will stay with you. Daphne – meaning is a very good looking girl who is popular with everybody. Shy at first, but fun and friendly once you get to know her. Smart and intelligent and enjoys company- couldn’t think of a better name for you and it is as if those little girls say inside your soul to give you this name.
You were so skinny and wouldn’t eat- I would sit and cry and try not to worry but in the back of my mind, I was wondering if you would make it, if you would let me help save you- if you would get strong? Day after day, night after night- I would cry and keep trying to get you to eat- to get you strong – to get your soul to wake up.
Your legs were weak and so bowed out. You couldn’t keep anything in you. You had bloody stools that put Linda Blair in the exorcist to shame as they would shoot out of you and you would cry.
Then finally that day came! You wanted to eat- we got your GI system to settle down. We were killing your worms inside you. You didn’t eat much, but you were eating and your tummy was finally accepting food and processing it.
We got rid of one flea- one little flea that did havoc on you- due to having an extreme allergy to fleas. I bathed you and prayed I could get your sore weeping skin to heal. And slowly, we started to win that battle too.
Last was to get you spayed- the days of having puppies for just profit without a care about your well-being was over.
With having the results of your allergy tests- your skin started to heal and your hair started to grow back.
All the dogs at your foster home picked up on your gentle soul and you were welcomed by all. You helped Lucy Lu with your confidence and gentleness to become more confident herself. You started to get stronger and now would even run in the yard and I started to see you smile more often.
You have gone from a dog that had me worried she would not survive and wouldn’t eat to a wonderful dog who now dances and hops around for her meals and treats.
We have been through a lot together and I could feel my heart soar along with yours as you got stronger and healthier.
You have brought love, compassion, patience and hope to all of us in your foster home. Though you will be missed- I am honored that you trusted me enough to get you were you are now and that I got to go on this journey with you.
As you get ready to go to your forever home, I know you will remember us and we will remember you. But even more important- I know you will continue to shine with the love bestowed on you by your new forever family.
People ask me how can I foster and let them go- because I know their new families will now see what I saw and their hearts too will grow with the love that I got to experience and that in itself is priceless.
As Daphne gets ready to leave to her forever family and home, I know there were be many more that will follow her and I will start a new journey with another little one that needs some help. I have done my job- now it is time for her to do hers- heal the hearts of her new family over the loss of one of their frenchies. Daphne’s adoption leaves an open spot for the next one our little pack helps.
And if I shed a tear or two on her adoption day- it is tears of happiness and joy, as I know I am handing her over to a heart that loves her as much as I have. I know that her journey will continue to be filled with love that she always has deserved and never gotten before she was rescued. And how wonderful that her journey will start with her new parents, doing the one thing she adores the most- a nice long car ride to her new home and family.
If you would like to help more dogs like Daphne, consider a donation to Chicago French Bulldog Rescue.