Dumplin', a 15-pound Chihuahua who had spend her entire life as "breeding
stock." Up until her rescue, she had never known affection; she had no
idea what grass was and cowered when set down in this unfamiliar stuff. Having
spent every single hour of her first five years in a cage, this little dog was
terrified of everything and everyone in the great, wide world.
When this photo
was taken, Dumplin was on her way to the rescue that would rehabilitate and
rehome her. She tipped the scales at about three times the normal weight for
her breed. Much of the extra weight was mammary tissue from being bred every
single heat. Dumplin was only 5 years old, but constant breeding and
puppy-rearing had aged her. She looked 12.
Dumplin was unable
to walk, partially because her normal Chihuahua-sized legs wouldn't hold her
weight and partically because her claws had grown so long they hooked back into
her paws. (You can't see them in this photograph, but she was holding on to her
transporter so hard that those claws dug right through a heavy outer jacket and
a sweatshirt, and right into the arm underneath!)
"owner" was a backyard breeder, which is just a puppy miller in
smaller scale. He considered her, at five, too old for further breeding, and
consequently, of no further value to him. We can only speculate what her fate
would have been if the rescue hadn't stepped in.
months' rehabilitation in a patient and loving foster home, Dumplin was adopted
into a wonderful Forever Home. However, she will always bear emotional scars of
her bondage, and she will probably never learn to play.