I will tell you why. Rescues are a breed on their own. They have a depth within them that gives more love than you can imagine. I can’t answer how. I know if I had been captured from the street, only knowing fear, pain, neglect, torment, hunger and illness – I wouldn’t trust anyone again. But that is what makes a rescue a breed apart. They have infinite forgiveness. True, some might take longer than others to come back from that depth of fear and misery than others, but a small wag of a tail, a token lick makes you feel you have won the lottery.
I have always rescued. I wouldn’t think of doing anything else. Why would I? There are millions and millions of abused, scared dogs that need a home. I only wish I was rich enough, with home enough to do that. Instead I have to take the few I can and treat them the best that they deserve.
Benny – my first at 4 years old, rescued from Brixton market at 5 weeks, unwell and who never fully recovered. My brother in life. Lived until I was 14 and gave me so much love.
Jock – my naughty second – unwanted litter and ready to be dumped in a pet shop for anyone to pick up. He journeyed through my life and I lost my boy when he was 13.
Felix – thrown out of a van onto a busy London road, swerved and picked up by the lorry driver behind. Starved, beaten, neglected, abused – this boy was the gentlest of all creatures and lived with us for 13 years. How could he forgive? But he did – and some!!
He was followed by Odin. Locked in a flat for the whole of his 9 years. Couldn’t walk as his claws were so long, dehydrated, starved, infected. My beautiful boy whom I lost to a heart attack at about 12. But the fun we had together in discovering the things he should have been granted, bonded us together.
Sally & Suki came as a pair having been locked in a garage. Terrified, desperate to please, with bent,old, now- mended broken bones – these two were my shadows.
Now I have a Rommie and a Greekie. These two boys light up my life. How do these animals come back from their fear and torment and are still able to inject joy into your life?
There is something so very special about a rescue. It may be harder work, but is it? I wouldn’t know. I have never bought a dog in my life. What I do know is that they have made my life richer, happier, warmer and more loving. Sure, they broke my heart when it was time for them to leave, but that is the price of love. My heart is held together like a patchwork quilt of paw prints. But the rewards of a rescue cannot be put into words. It is an integral part of my life. Don’t question – rescue don’t buy."
-by Elle Kim McPherson