Connemara Kennels, Camus, Co. Galway | Email: | Phone: 091 584 274 

MADRA @Paraic_O_S @nuigPsychology Darby looks like he knows a thing or two about animal behavior 🐾

Only eight days into the new year... Yes, this is a dog. The breed? We can't be sure. We think this boy is a Maltese mix. Sometimes we just don't know what the dog warden is going to bring to us. Today, we got the call that a dog in poor condition was on the way over to us. A dog who had been found straying by a caring person who took him in until the warden could bring him to us. Nothing could have prepared us for what greeted us when we opened the door to his van. As always, we can tell by the dog warden's manner, a hint of what to expect. Today, he was without the usual cheer. He shook his head and gave us a we knew, we knew it wasn't going to be good. The van opened up and there sat this poor, poor little mite....deeply riddled with muddied matts from the top of his nose to the tip of his tail. How our hearts sank. To think of the discomfort and pain he was in. To think how long he was left for in this appalling condition, with no-one looking out for his welfare. We slowly popped a lead on him. It came off immediately due to the thick, dirty matts covering his neck. His coat was so overgrown and so matted, he could barely see. We were shocked at how friendly he was. “He was like, ‘Hey! Does anybody want to pet me? I’ll let anybody pet me who wants to pet me.” He was trying to lick us, and wanted to be petted. His tail was wagging furiously which only made it harder for us to hide the tears. He was also so incredibly itchy that he rubbed up against us repeatedly to ease the discomfort he was so accustomed to feeling. So before we could do anything else, we knew he had to be shaved down. We were under pressure. We had 40+ other dogs who needed their dinner and afternoon walks but we couldn't leave this boy suffering in such obvious discomfort. We rang our dear groomer friend Mairéad of Madra Galánta in Carraroe. We couldn't find the words to adequately explain the condition of this poor, poor boy but like the true angel to dogs she is...Mairéad was at our shelter within fifteen minutes of the call to whisk him away and help him feel much better. We named him Romeo as he is a total charmer and heartbreaker. Everybody he came into contact with, he wanted attention from. For a dog who has obviously not been taken care of very well by people, it’s amazing. It’s a testament of how strong dogs are. People don’t forgive as fast as this dog does. It's obvious someone was kind to him at some point in his life. Mairéad said it was mostly mud in his coat. His feet were completely covered with matted hair, like he never felt the ground under his paws. His skin was really bad, especially his back paws and neck. She also said one of his back legs was so knotted that the blood wasn't circulating properly and that it was really hard to get the matted hair off. He was such a brave boy during the whole session. She messaged us to say "Whoever gets him will be so, so lucky. He loves belly rubs and he is just so happy. At least he is in safe hands now.” You can see the "after" photos of Romeo if you scroll through the photos. It's hard to believe it's the same dog. What a day Romeo has had. He is now tucked up safely at our shelter with copious amounts of fleecy blankets (Christmas gifts from you!) a warm jacket as he is bound to feel the cold now that he is completely bare. He also has a heat pad tucked into his bed. Tomorrow will bring a full health check. He will have to do five full working days at our shelter as a pound dog before he becomes available for adoption. He will also need time to recover from his ordeal. But we wanted to share Romeo's story with you. Our thanks lie with the caring person who found him, Galway County Council dog warden for his compassion and to Mairéad, who in the face of such neglect, reminded us today of the wonderfully caring people who exist in the world...and who will drop everything in an instant to help a creature in need. The process of seeing so many people come together to help just one dog — it restores our faith that people can and will go out of their way to save dogs. You can help, and you can do something to make a difference. And if it’s just one dog, it’s worth it. Romeo is worth it, and seeing that somebody didn’t appreciate how amazing he was at some point in his life hurts, but now he has a chance. Romeo, we love you and you are safe tonight and forever more... Team MADRA xx


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