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The Story of Chap

posted Apr 14, 2012, 1:53 PM by Jeffrey Christoffersen   [ updated Apr 14, 2012, 2:00 PM ]
Originally posted October 2008

Chap lived nearly his entire 8 years of life on the end of a chain. In the middle of winter, a concerned neighbor called FIDO because Chap appeared very sick. FIDO volunteers visited the address and found a very sick and lethargic dog still chained up outside in winter. There was a strong odor of infection, so we knew there was something seriously wrong with this poor dog. We stressed to the owners that the dog must be treated by a vet. When they declined, FIDO insisted that the dog must receive immediate treatment or he would likely die. So Chap was taken to a local emergency clinic where he was diagnosed with a massive infection likely due to untreated dog bite wounds. Chap required two surgeries to remove all the dead, infected tissue. Chap also needed powerful antibiotics, and endless bandage changes over a period of 6 weeks before he was finally healed. During this time, Chap was surrendered by his owners and FIDO became his legal guardian.

During Chap’s long recovery, a couple of kind-hearted ARPO volunteers (Alliance for Responsible Pet Ownership) fostered Chap, even though Chap was not an “official” ARPO dog. They reliably administered antibiotics and made endless return trips to the vet for bandage changes. The problem was, Chap did not get along well with the other male dogs in the house. So Chap moved on to another foster home with a FIDO volunteer. Again, he did not get along well with the other male dogs in the house and there were some very serious fights. We think that Chap’s history of being vulnerable on the end of a chain to attacks by other dogs may have contributed to his inability to get along with other male dogs.

We struggled what to do with Chap, a dog who had been through so much suffering and such a difficult recovery. A regular adoption was not an option for a dog with such issues getting along with other dogs. But the concerned neighbor would not give up on Chap and she worked to find Chap a place at an animal sanctuary. Chap went to live at the sanctuary where he is being carefully socialized and slowly integrated in with some of the other dogs. So far, Chap is doing amazingly well at the sanctuary. Chap has been through so much suffering, we are so glad he has finally found a place to live out the rest of his days in a place where he is given lots of kindness and good care and will never be chained up again.

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