HOW A TINY INJURED PUPPY HEALED ME WHEN I NEEDED IT MOST

As a licensed vet tech, I have met many injured pups throughout my career. Working in emergency medicine introduces you to so many furry friends in need, but one touched my heart in a different way, writes iheartdogs.

About 5 years ago I walked into my job at the animal hospital, ready to start a normal shift. Across the room on the treatment table was a tiny puppy with multiple wounds, visibly shaken up from her traumatic evening.

The technician currently working with the injured puppy had multiple patients, so I stepped in and took her on as my own. I still remember the initial shock of seeing so many puncture wounds on such a small body, and how strong she was considering what she had been through. As I learned more about her case, I came to realize just how desperate of a situation this poor puppy was in.

The injured puppy was described as being flung around like a rag doll after being assaulted by two huge dogs. The owner placed their two adult dogs and their new puppy on the ground since she was eager to show off her new puppy to her friends. She was surprised when the dogs attacked the small puppy right away because she didn’t know how to introduce dogs to each other properly. The 6-week-old puppy was in imminent danger of dying, but her owner couldn’t grasp the seriousness of the situation. Her owner was barely old enough to bring a pet through our doors, let alone be aware of the future care this dog will require.

After performing multiple diagnostics, she was found to have a slew of serious injuries. She had multiple broken ribs, a fractured femur, a broken hip, and was in shock from her ordeal. Even if she survived this trauma, she had a long road ahead.

The young owner knew she could not give the puppy what she needed going forward, and was considering taking her home as is. At this point I became extremely invested in this puppy’s care, and offered to take her in as my own. She was soon signed over to my care, and my life with this incredible puppy began.

We tenderly named her Ellie, and so started our arduous path to recovery. Due to the difficulties I was going through at the time—I had some personal healing to complete—I use the pronoun “our.” Ellie entered my life just as I started to sober up and helped me go through the hardest thing I had ever done.

Ellie required an FHO (a type of hip repair), 8 weeks of external fixators in her femur, and a hospital stay to help her recover from shock. Her treatment took a long time, but it was well worth it in the end. Eight weeks later, her fixators were taken out, letting her to become the boisterous puppy she’d always wanted to be!

Later, Ellie developed into the best friend I could ever hope for. She stuck by my side through countless sleepless nights, agonizing heartbreak, and every challenge I would experience on the road to sobriety.

I am now 5 years sober, and I credit much of my success to the love she offered me in my hardest days. Ellie is my heart dog in every way possible, and I can’t imagine my life without her!

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