Falling ill and not being able to take care of your pets is most people’s worst nightmare, especially when there’s no one you can turn to in such a situation.
Usually, those who don’t have family members who can take care of their pets will rely on animal control to step in and help.
Such was the case for one veteran from Vietnam, who suffered from a major heart attack back in 2015. While he recovered, his two dogs, Baily and Blaize, were taken to a rescue center to be cared for. But unfortunately, it took a long time for the veteran to get back on his feet again.
With safekeeping holds normally lasting for just 5 days, the poor veteran risked not being able to see his beloved dogs ever again.
“The shelter held them for 20 days and made the decision to go ahead and sterilize them and place them up for adoption after receiving news that their owner wasn’t well and may not make it,” Shelter worker Lindsay Donovan explained. “Their owner called many times asking about them stating he was coming to get them.”
A heart attack can take its toll on anybody, but when you don’t have anyone there to help with your recovery, it can be even more difficult.
The veteran wanted desperately to get his dogs back, but for a long time, it just wasn’t possible.
“He loved them a lot but when he did get better, he wasn’t in a position to get them back,” Lindsay said. “He was getting back on his feet- and finally on December 16, 2015 he came to see them for the first time in months and put a deposit down to get them back.”
Melissa Eagle was one of the kennel staff working at FSAC PetSmart where the man’s dogs were being held. On the day that he went to pick up his dogs, Melissa was there- and as she learned about his story, she became determined to help him.
“She saw him with his dogs for the first time in months and how he was in awe and so were the dogs!” Lindsay said. “He sat on the floor with them as they licked him and went crazy with joy. Come to find out to much surprise of all the staff they were very well trained too!”
The office manager at the shelter had already reduced the adoption fee by over half, but Melissa wanted to do more.
She contacted some volunteers who were keen to help. One person offered to cover the whole of the adoption fee, while others chipped in to buy supplies for Baily and Blaize.
The big moment arrived for the veteran to pick up his dogs, and Lindsay decided to capture his reaction on camera. The touching video was then shared onto YouTube for us all to see, and it now has over 1 million views.
The video shows how the sweet man was completely taken by surprise when he found out about the kind gesture that Melissa and the other volunteers had pulled.
“He couldn’t understand why he was getting his money back. He thought he wasn’t allowed to have them back,” Lindsay recalled. “As I tried to explain everything to him he is in shock to hear that Melissa was able to get his adoption fee covered by a volunteer and that other volunteers had donated dog food, toys, gift cards, treats, among other things yet to come.”
It’s clear just how much this gesture means to him. The man seems on the brink of tears as he asks, “Are you serious?” And while his eyes might be teary, he can’t wipe the big smile from off his face!
This touching video is proof that all it takes is a little kindness and compassion to make someone’s day.
This man had lost everything, but thanks to Lindsay and Melissa, he at least was able to get back the two things that mattered the most to him. Watch the touching video for yourself below, and don’t forget those tissues!
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