Coming to their rescue: UAE stray animals find their forever homes

Nothing makes a passionate animal activist happier than finding a caring home for a four-legged friend in need. Here are some success stories: A starving kitten born without eyelids, an animal welfare group’s longest-staying dog and a pair of salukis who could not bear to be separated are just some of the stray animals now […]

Nothing makes a passionate animal activist happier than finding a caring home for a four-legged friend in need. Here are some success stories:

A starving kitten born without eyelids, an animal welfare group’s longest-staying dog and a pair of salukis who could not bear to be separated are just some of the stray animals now safe in forever homes.

Pickle, a tiny ginger and white kitten, was found in a park, emaciated, with encrusted eyes and a mouth full of infected sores.

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This article is part of our supplement on happiness, which unites us all. For more happiness stories visit our dedicated page.

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“Pickle was laying prostrate, but still breathing, next to the bins,” says Sarah Bartlett, a spokeswoman for Animal Action UAE. “His eyes were in such a bad state that it was assumed he was blind, and he also smelled like he was rotting.” Veterinarians warned that Pickle may not survive the night.

“We prepared for the worst,” says Bartlett. “However Pickle did survive the night and, despite being so weak, we requested that he go into a home the next day where he could enjoy round-the-clock attention.”

Ms Bartlett took on that challenge herself and got Pickle on six meals a day. Within four days he had doubled in weight. “This staggered the vet, especially as originally no one expected him to survive,” she says. “It took a couple of days to clean him up, one wet wipe at a time – he was so filthy.”

While Pickle’s eyes began to clear up something was clearly wrong with his vision.

A further check-up confirmed the kitten was born without ­eyelids.

Despite never having known human company, Pickle proved himself to be the most affectionate kitten, says Bartlett.

“He liked to be tucked in at night under a blanket, with a soft toy to cuddle up to – just like a human baby.”

Now, eight months of foster homes and round-the-clock care to nurse him back to health, Pickle has just found a permanent home. Best of all, his lack of eyelids cause him no problems and he appears to see perfectly.

“Everyone who meets Pickle melts with love,” says Bartlett.

A perfect match

Some rescued animals need a little longer to find the right home.

Fraggle, a bearded collie mix, was Animal Action UAE’s longest resident, having been in and out of foster homes for three years – until recently.

“Fraggle could be temperamental and short-tempered and was our longest guest – to the extent that it was breaking our hearts,” says Bartlett. “But then a lady came forward earlier this year having seen pictures of her on our Facebook page and they were introduced.

“It was love at first sight and Fraggle is a changed character.

“She has now been formally adopted and is much cherished.”

Warad and Jameela, a pair of abandoned and abused former racing salukis, became Animal Action UAE mascots for a while and were fostered for almost two years by Sarita Darch, one of Animal Action UAE’s committee members.

“Inexplicably to us, no one ever came forward with any interest in them,” says Bartlett. “However Sarita’s husband, Dave, could see that over time his wife had fallen hook, line and sinker and we quietly conspired with him to finalise the adoption papers without her knowing.

“He presented the adoption certificates to her as a surprise and there was not a dry eye in the house.”

Bartlett says there are thousands of animals in the care of animal rescue organisations in the UAE and thousands more on the street, all needing that one lucky break.

“It is often said that taking on a rescue animal won’t change your world, but it will change the world for that animal. We disagree. Every day we see people whose lives have been immensely enriched by taking on a rescue animal and watching them grow and flourish under their care. The benefit is undoubtedly mutual.”

Back on his feet

Discovered on the side of a desert road on the outskirts of Abu Dhabi, emaciated and with two broken front legs, Mason, a young saluki, was not expected to survive.

Today, he is on the mend thanks to Animal Action, the support of a local veterinary practice that discounted the cost of his surgery and the round-the-clock attention that a foster carer is providing.

Animal Rescue first heard about Mason’s plight on its Facebook page with a report of a dog in agony on a dusty desert road. “Two of our volunteers, Andrea and Mason, responded to the plea for help and went to collect him,” she says. “They found him howling with pain, bleeding and with a non-functioning back leg.”

Mason, named for one of his two rescuers, underwent a five-hour operation at the Australian Veterinary Hospital (AVH) in Khalifa City to pin his broken front legs and now sports two full-leg plaster casts.

“Mason coped amazingly, all the time lapping up the newfound attention despite his pain. He has a very sweet nature and is clearly used to human contact.

Despite Mason’s long road to recovery and the constant care he needs until then, Bartlett says there was no trouble finding him a home.

“Amazingly, a suitable fosterer came forward and he is now in a loving home where he is carried out into the sunshine every day on his blankets for some time in the garden, which he is thriving on.

“He is loving, peaceful, calm and evidently full of gratitude.”

newsdesk@thenational.ae

Source: uae news

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