She only had hours left to live before she was rescued.
For dogs and humans alike, living on the street is a daunting existence that requires even those with the best survival instincts to experience painful moments of loneliness, despair, and starvation. For some, this situation lasts for years and can ultimately lead to death for the individual, especially for dogs that are picked up off of the street and then euthanized because they aren’t in adoptable condition.
Though Spirit Golden Heart, a pit bull mix that was found on the streets of Los Angeles, was fated to meet a similar demise, Ghetto Rescue FFoundation (GRFF) was able to rescue her just in time and save her life. One person walked past her and decided to call the authorities, so LAPD officers picked up the starving pup to take to Animal Control, but GRFF took her so they could oversee her lengthy rehabilitation. The foundation posted on Facebook,
“How long did people walk past her? How many people saw her starving?…. She has maggots in open wounds, large fat ticks and is starving. It took a long time for her to get like this.”
GRFF rushed her to the vet and told that Spirit Golden Heart’s chances at survival were slim because of the extent of her poor condition, but everyone involved was hopeful that this fighter would be able to one day have a loving family as a healthy dog. She was named Spirit Golden Heart because she has a golden brown heart spot on her body and because the rescue knew she was strong.
On top of her topical issues with the maggots and ticks, Spirit also suffered from anemia, low protein levels, fevers on and off, atrophied leg tendons, very weak immune system, ingrown eyelashes that caused a lot of discomfort, low red blood cell count, and polyarthritis. Vets said that she only had a few hours left to live when she was picked up off the streets and realized that the indentations on her head were not deformities, like they initially thought, but just another sign of how deeply starved she was.
“After receiving an enormous amount of IV fluids, blood transfusions, numerous visits to the doctor and many days of hospitalization, her red blood count is much higher and her protein level is stabilized,” said GRFF in a Facebook post.
These hospital visits lasted months, and required Spirit to try a slew of different medications to treat her many ailments, but she also found a foster home that took her in even though she does not get along with other dogs (or cats, brooms, and rakes). The foster family adores her and has watched over her during her entire recovery, marking weight milestones and restoring Spirit back to health. It’s amazing what a little love can do even in the most dire conditions.
As of the latest update, Spirit had gained 20 pounds and was walking more easily despite her arthritis and tendon pains. She is still looking for a forever home, so if you are able to bring Spirit in as your only dog, you can inquire about her here.