When she came toward me with that long snake I did not know what was going to happen!
And do you know what? She tried to put that snake on my neck! Can you believe that? Of course, I said no way! That thing was scary. It was pretty big too. Long with a silver head that stared right at me. I tried to run away but she held on to my collar. I even growled a little bit. Didn’t work at all. What to do now? RUN!
Even though she had always been nice to me, she chased me with that snake! I shook in fear. She said “calm down. It’s okay.” Okay? It is NOT okay! Why are you doing this awful thing?
“Okay,” she said. “Let’s introduce you to the leash.” She laid the long snake on the ground. I watched, hoping it would slither away in the tall grass never to be seen again.
But it didn’t move. Was it dead? I was curious and got a little closer to smell it. No smell to it. It didn’t move as I got closer. I watched the silver head. No movement. “It won’t hurt you” she encouraged.
She had never really lied to me so I edged a little closer. No movement on the snake’s part. I carefully edged a little closer. Quickly I stuck my head out and bit that snake!
Yuck! It didn’t taste like anything I had ever had and it was still not moving. Either a very brave snake or a dead one.
Curiosity took over. I couldn’t help myself. I walked right up to it and let it know who was boss. It didn’t try to fight with me. I was confident that I had established who was who around here.
She picked up the snake and snapped its head on my collar. I looked down and sure enough that snake was behaving itself. It hung there limply. It had completely given up.
She said “lets go for a walk!”
That snake stayed right with me and didn’t even try to bite! And off we went!
Author: Denise from Second Chance
There are an estimated
at breeding facilities in Iowa.
What happens when these 15,000 dogs retire?
The choices are few.
Second Chance Dog Rescue offers the dogs a cage free environment to retire from their working life and transition to becoming companions.
We go to the breeding facility. The dogs are loaded in our van. No dog is turned away regardless of condition or age.
We offer the dogs
Second Chance Dog Rescue, with your help, has assisted
approximately 1500 dogs on their adventures to new homes.
We could not have done this without your help.
Thank you to those that have supported these dogs.
We invite others to join us and also help these sometimes "forgotten" dogs.
You can get involved by
Your kindness and your love has made a difference.
Eve: Mama, can you tell me a true story about rescue?
Mama: Sure Eve. Are you ready?
Mama: Here we go:
His still body lay at the bottom of the ditch. At a glance he appeared dead but on closer inspection you could see his broad chest rise slightly and fall. The blood on his back hid the possible source of his pain.
The gentle arms of a woman picked him up and carried him to her car. The blood and the gasps for air told her his time was short. She carefully laid his body on the passengers side of the front seat. His eyes opened lazily and slowly closed again.
The X-rays showed the pellets that had showered through his spine, the result of a shotgun blast to his back. She struggled to understand the cruelty he had endured. The doctor told her he was too old and fragile to do much except keep him comfortable.
The woman watched him grow stronger. She watched the legs become useful. The doctor marveled at all he had overcome with nothing more than a will to live and a woman who loved him. His staggered walk became steadier. He would always walk with a limp. The limp reminded the woman of all the dog had been through. He was devoted to the woman. Their love had conquered what seemed insurmountable...a 12 year old pit bull who was shot by his owner and left to die in a ditch.
She was warned about fighting pit bulls. She was told that they never lost that desire to kill. But his eyes were soft and he looked at her with an appreciation of all she had done. The fight to kill was gone. He now fought for his future, his future with the woman. He knew she was his. She knew he was hers.
The crisp, signed adoption papers only confirmed what they both already knew.. that their love of one another had healed the scars of the past and brought them a future of joy.
Eve: Mama, I have tears on my fur.
Mama: He was a wonderful dog Eve. His name was Harley. He was with the woman for the rest of his life.
Eve: Mama, do humans ever have to live apart from other humans and not see other humans?
Mama: Well, I guess if you are in prison on death row it would be that way.
Eve: Yeah, but the people there did bad stuff right?
Mama: Yes. Why are you asking?
Eve: I was trying to think why sometimes dogs can't be together. Did they do something bad too?
Mama: Now Eve, you know that the dogs here are only kept apart if they are sick or if they are not able to be nice with other dogs. You wouldn't want to get hurt would you?
Eve: I don't mean here Mama.
Mama: Everybody has their own way of doing things and their own reasons. We just think that dogs, just like people, are meant to live together. We volunteers love watching you all play together, chasing each other around in the play area, napping all curled up together. We would miss all that if the dogs were kept separate.
Eve: I feel bad for dogs who can't play together mama.
Mama: Me too Baby Girl, me too.
Mama: There's so much to do that I don't know where to start.
Eve: Humans say funny things mama. You start at start, the beginning.
Mama: (laugh) I guess you are right Eve. Sometimes, though, it's hard to find the "start" so we have to prioritize. You have to put things in order of importance.
Eve: I'm important right mama?
Mama: You are especially important Eve! But other things have to be put in order of what needs doing the most.
Eve: So where's your start?
Mama: Dogs are very first. They have to be taken outside, fed, watered, medications given, groomed, played with, work on their issues. That's first. That's the reason we are here.
Mama: From there it is harder for me. I guess next is appointments. We need to prepare for any adoption meetings or volunteers that are coming in. We clean first thing in the morning and then spot check throughout the day. Cleaning never stops so we don't really need a priority for it. It's just always.
Eve: Is that it Mama?
Mama: Oh, heaven's no! We have to process adoptions, do intakes on new dogs, talk to people, pick up stray dogs that need us, take dog photos, schedule volunteers, ask for donations and volunteer help, train dogs, order supplies, talk to companies, answer phone, emails, texts, messages, post to facebook, twitter, instagram, snapchat, find homes for dogs, look for the home of stray dogs, make vet appointments...
Eve: Gosh mama! Make sure you got time to give me loves.
Mama: I schedule that first, middle and last. I need loves just like you do baby girl!
Eve: So what did my mama teach me and how big was I when she went to her new home?
Mama: Well...you were about 13 weeks old when Emily went to her new home. You really missed her at first but I gave you tons of love so you wouldn't feel so bad. Your mama loved you too and she taught you all kinds of things. Your mama taught how to be social with your siblings. She taught you about boundaries and what is safe or not safe. She also taught you how to play nicely. She taught you about biting and showed you how to not bite hard. That way you will get along with others, including people.
Eve: Did it take a long time to teach me all that stuff?
Mama: At least until you were about 10 -12 weeks old.
Eve: I had two good mamas, you and Emily too!
Mama: You are right Eve and they both love you very much!
Me: Eve, it is so hard when you get calls about dogs that either you know you can't help or you have no room for them.
Eve: Mama, I thought we could help all the dogs. I know there are sometimes we don't have room for everyone.
Me: One of the hardest things for me to accept is that we cannot help every dog. Some dogs are beyond help. It can be a health issue or behavior issues. We always have to think of everyone already at the rescue and not just the one dog. That is very hard to deal with.
Eve: So you have to say no sometimes? I don't like it when you tell me no.
Me: No you don't like it Eve. I hate it when I have to tell someone no. You don't want to take a dog that will have to live in a kennel for the rest of its life. That feels even worse than saying no at the very beginning.
Eve: It makes you sad mama.
Me: Yes Evie. You have to focus on the good and what you CAN do. That's what gets you through it!
Eve: Mama, am I your daughter?
Me: Usually I say you're my little girl but I guess it's the same thing.
Eve: I have to be your daughter cuz you're my mama, right mama?
Me: You are family Eve. I never knew how much I could love a dog until you came along. You're my special girl Eve and I love you heart and soul.
Eve: Mama, are the dogs at the rescue our family?
Me: Absolutely! I was just thinking about that. The dogs are like our children and the volunteers are mamas and papas and aunts and uncles, just like in a human family. What we do here at the rescue, dealing with life and death situations on a regular basis, makes for an emotionally charged environment. We depend on each other for support when times are hard and we look to each other for smiles when things are easy.
Eve: I like being a part of a family! I have lots and lots of family.
Me: Yes you do. You don't have to have the same bloodlines to be family. You just have to have the same respect and the same love. That's family. I am blessed to have you Evie and I am also blessed to have the Second Chance family. It feels good to be a part of something bigger, a part of a place that is making a change in dogs lives every day.
Eve: I have dog blood and you have human blood but you are my mama!
Me: That is right!