When Joe, a senior lab mix, arrived as a stray at DCHS, his soulful brown eyes and wagging tail pleaded for help. It was shocking to see his rib and hip bones sticking out of his frail body.
He was extremely skinny, weighing just 22 pounds when he should have weighed closer to 50 pounds. Joe would have a long road to recovery ahead of him.
Joe spent nearly a month at the shelter enjoying snuggles in a staff office and long walks in the summer sun. He was a happy boy but wasn’t gaining weight at a steady enough pace. After many diagnostic tests ruled out an underlying medical condition, we decided Joe would do best recovering in a loving foster home.
During his nearly two month stay with his foster family, Joe’s goofy personality truly blossomed. He loved lounging on the patio furniture, playtime with foster siblings and tossing his favorite stuffy whale toy into the air. Joe, however, still struggled to consistently gain weight. To make matters worse, he was becoming a picky eater.
Joe’s foster mom Sheila patiently tempted Joe with a variety of home cooked meals. Sheila soon discovered Joe was a big fan of egg omelets. This special treat sparked Joe’s appetite and helped him reach 35 pounds. This milestone meant Joe was finally healthy enough to be made available for adoption.
Just a few days later, Vicki and her daughter Emily quickly fell in love with this sweet senior gentleman and took him home. Joe adores his new family right back, especially Emily. He sleeps at the foot of Emily’s bed every night and won’t leave the room until she is awake. Their human animal bond is undeniable.
The extra work of making Joe’s special diet was a challenge embraced by his new family. Joe continues to heal and gain weight. He has even become his new mom’s running partner.
“He seems to be very content here and I’m sure he realizes he is here to stay,” says Vicki. “We love him to pieces!”
Your support of DCHS gives thousands of animals a place to rest, recover and grow every year. Please continue your generosity to give animals like Joe the time they need to heal their bodies and spirits and have a second chance at happiness.