I’m just a little rescue dog, my Mistress saved me from a puppy mill but I sure love life here in the South West so please be patient and listen to what a little dog has to say about being…a dog.
Mistress says I have to share this article written by our dear friend Sandy Miller before I go into my stuff so here it is:
“Wide open spaces and dancing leaves"
Her days are filled with walks along the trails of southern Utah’s picturesque red-rock country. She loves chasing leaves dancing in the wind and running free with the greyhounds on a friend’s large property. At night, she snuggles up with Ziplock, one of the cats Best Friends Animal Society rescued from a hoarding situation in Pahrump, Nevada.
Snuffles, one of 179 dogs Best Friends helped rescue last fall from a commercial breeding operation in Virginia, is living the good life these days. Oh, how far she has come.
She does bear a striking resemblance to Toto, the little dog who accompanied Dorothy down the Yellow Brick Road in the classic film “The Wizard of Oz.” But one could argue that this little cairn terrier has faced even scarier things in her time than wicked witches, apple-throwing trees and flying green monkeys.
Snuffles spent the first few years of her life in a cage in a Virginia puppy mill churning out litter after litter of puppies to be sold for profit. In October, that joyless life came to an end when Best Friends Animal Society and other groups rescued her and 178 other dogs from the Virginia commercial breeding operation. The dogs were taken to Pets Alive, a sanctuary in New York that Best Friends had stepped in to help when the owner fell on hard times.
Laurel Anderson, Best Friends’ video producer, traveled out to Pets Alive to film the dogs for the Best Friends website. She’ll never forget the first time she saw Snuffles.
“I noticed one very woebegone little dog all alone in her run,” Laurel says. “The other dogs were two to six in each of the runs, but she was so dreadfully wheezy they quarantined her. She looked so frightened and miserable, it broke my heart.”
Snuffles was one of about a dozen dogs immediately brought back to Best Friends for special care for their health and emotional problems. Laurel stopped by the clinic to take a peek at Snuffles. That peek turned into a little walk, which turned into an overnight visit to Laurel’s home for Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving turned into forever. And there’s nothing more healing than a loving, forever home.
“She’s come so far that people do a double-take when they see her,” Laurel says. “She’s happier, healthier, bolder, athletic.”
But Snuffles still bears some physical and emotional scars from spending her first few years in a puppy mill. She still “snuffles” because of a chronic respiratory ailment, though she is now receiving the best of veterinary care. She’s terrified of running water, which Laurel believes is due to having her kennel hosed down by her puppy mill owners.
Today, life is good – for both Snuffles and Laurel.
“She is my dear little friend and fits into my life,” Laurel says. “Her incorrigible, happy humor, her playful sweetness and kisses, the way she rolls over for a belly rub when I greet her in the morning, all make me happy. She warms my heart.”
Story by Sandy Miller
Photo by Molly Wald