In July 2013, during one of Gateway Pet Guardians’ daily feeding route through the streets of East St. Louis, three volunteers came upon a dirty white pup laying quite distressed in some weeds. Quickly realizing how dire the situation was, the volunteers stopped to further investigate. Upon approach, she was found bloodied, emaciated, vomiting and foaming at the mouth. When she took to interest in food, besides a quick sniff, it was apparent her situation was critical. She was named Charlotte, held in the front seat of the car and rushed to the emergency veterinary clinic.
Initial evaluation discovered Charlotte had been poisoned and possibly shot in the head. Her injuries were causing seizures, vertigo, disorientation and hearing loss. But not once did Charlotte pose a threat. We like to believe she knew she was finally safe.
After a roller coaster of emotions throughout the organization, Charlotte was able to get some real rest after 72 hours at the emergency clinic. She enjoyed some much-needed, temporary in-home rehabilitation with one of the volunteers who saved her life that day. She learned what it was like to lay on a couch, eat a full meal and you guessed it – even play with a toy! This was the ideal transition phase for Charlotte so we could continue to monitor her health progress and determine the best possible home – one where she would never have to worry about the previous life she led.
Charlotte’s good luck continued! After a little over a month, she was taken off of her anti-seizure medication, and miraculously – her hearing returned! It was determined that her injuries likely caused the temporary hearing impairment. Between the Gateway Pet Guardians shelter and a foster home, she polished her socialization skills with other pets, kids and adults. She was the resident ham amongst her peers and Charlotte rarely met anyone who didn’t instantly fall in love with her
In late January 2014, Charlotte found her forever home, with her new dad, Dustin. In true Charlotte fashion, she had no trouble settling in. The team at Gateway Pet Guardians checks in often to see how she’s doing. Her dad had this to say, “She gives hugs, likes to kiss my ears and has these stuffed animals she carries around like her babies. She takes them out with her when she goes potty. She lays long ways across the whole couch. She’s at the door with hugs as soon as I walk in. I needed her just as much as she needed me.”
Charlotte is just one of many dogs that Gateway Pet Guardians has rescued and rehabilitated from the streets of East St. Louis. There are many more just like her – all of which we’re confident will find a home as lucky as hers. If you would like to get involved with Gateway Pet Guardians, we welcome you to join our family!
If Charlotte’s story touched your heart, consider making a donation in her honor to the Gateway Pet Guardians Second Chance Fund to help save other strays just like her.
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