Ladies and gentleman, meet your new hero – Bob Hoelter.
Hoelter deserves a round of applause from animal lovers around the world because of his actions in Griffith, Indiana recently. He, however, believes an act of “divine intervention” that led to the happenings of this cold winter night.
Normally, Hoelter drives 2 miles to a local store, but this particular night, he decided to take a walk. And because of this, things could have turned out much much differently.
“I usually drive. That night I decided I needed some exercise,” Hoelter told The Dodo.
As Hoelter was walking, he began to cross a bridge but noticed a noise. A heartbreaking, sad noise.
The noise stopped him in his tracks and he knew something must be wrong. It was a sound unlike any he’d ever heard before – a cry of distress and despair.
“I was looking at the water and the land, but I don’t see anything, but I hear it,” he said. “I walked back to land and I walked around and looked around.”
The cries continued but he couldn’t pinpoint the where they were coming from. So, Hoelter got on his hands and knees, down into the culvert, determined to figure out what was going on – but uncertain about what he might find.
Hoelter was searching blindly in the dark, but he knew that someone or something needed his help.
“I get my flashlight out because I always carry a flashlight with me,” Hoelter said. “I got to the bottom. I finally see him!”
Soon, Hoelter saw two scared and desperate eyes staring back at him. It was a small little puppy, shivering in the cold. Not only was he shocked to see such a sweet puppy in such a strange area, but he also noticed something else that made his heart drop to the floor.
Upon getting closer to the puppy, Hoelter saw that the poor pup’s muzzle was taped shut – wrapped tightly with electrical tape.
“I’m like, ‘Oh, sh*t,” Hoelter said.
Knowing he had to act quickly, Hoelter rushed the terrified puppy to Griffith Animal Hospital. His fingers were crossed that they would still be open at this time of night.
“I just threw him in my jacket, crawled back up and started hoofing it to the animal hospital,” he said.
Hoelter pushed through the hospital doors with the puppy in his arms and it’s a memory that Griffith Animal Hospital manager Lori Kovacich will forever have etched in her mind.
“I was out of my chair and in the lobby to get him in seconds,” Kovacich told The Dodo.
Completely appalled by what she was seeing, Kovacich took the puppy and ran with him back to the veterinary staff. She didn’t even have time to ask Hoelter what had happened or where the puppy was found.
Hoelter didn’t expect a ‘thank you’ – he was just happy that the sweet, scared puppy was in good hands. So, he continued on with his evening and headed to his original destination.
The vet staff removed the tape and did a medical evaluation – their hearts dropped when they realized the tape must have been there for days.
Once removing the tape, they discovered his skin was badly damaged and determined he must have been about 4-months-old. Not to mention – after an X-ray, they discovered the poor little guy had a broken leg.
The staff treated him with antibiotics and ointment and gave him a nice, comfy bed with toys. His leg, which they assumed came from when he was tossed off the bridge, would require surgery.
Kovacich was devastated by what she saw that night and took to Facebook saying, “In my 30 years of working here, I never thought I’d see this … in real life.”
The Facebook post quickly spread amongst the local residents and caught the eye of Mary Witting – she and her husband were longtime clients of the vet clinic and had recently lost their beloved dog.
“I thought, ‘That cute little face, he needs me. I can give him 24/7 love, and I need him,’” Witting told The Dodo.
As soon as the Witting family went to the shelter – they fell in love with the little puppy. They adopted him and named him Louie.
The Wittings had no idea who had saved the puppy, his identity was a mystery at this point. Kovavich, who was caught up in the moment, was upset that she hadn’t gotten his name or number.
But soon – Hoelter’s niece happened to see the Facebook post as well. She knew that her uncle had to reach out to confirm his identity. Plus, a reunion was in order.
Hoelter and his niece organized a reunion with Louie and his new family and the dog’s reaction is nothing short of priceless.
“I was awestruck because I didn’t think he remembered me,” Hoelter said. “They sat him down and he ran right to me.”
Louie was overwhelmed at the sight of his rescuer and smothered Hoelter with lots of wet kisses and love. Hoelter was ecstatic to know the sweet dog was safe and had a new, loving family that would treat him right.
Despite rescuing Louie, Hoelter can’t help but think about what would have happened to Louie if he didn’t decide to take a walk that night.
“It makes me think God has a purpose for everyone, to be honest with you. We all have our calling,” Hoelter said. “I’m going to have to walk more often, but I sure don’t want to find more dogs under the bridge.”
All we know is that we’re so thankful for Hoelter and couldn’t be happier for little Louie and his new family.
See the full Facebook post from the vet clinic below.
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Source: The Dodo