Second Pup Rescued from Mean Neighbors

I got her. Scarred, scabbed, starving, and scared to death. Covered from head to tail with ticks, even deep down inside her ears. There is no agency on earth that could have acted as quickly or prevented my fear of reprisal. I answer to a higher authority—my own conscience.

Ears and back of head of pup rescued from neighbors on the border in Arizona

Inside ear of pup rescued from neighbors on the border in Arizona


25 responses to “Second Pup Rescued from Mean Neighbors

  1. There ya go! I knew you would do it 🙂

    I know the forever home you find for her will be one that will give her TLC and let her know there really is a ‘dog’s life’ with someone that cares.

    Way to go…

  2. Hooray hooray HOORAY! Bless you a thousand times over. I have been brooding about the new pup for days ever since I read your last blog. Keep answering to your higher authority Debrushka – it’s what the best of people have always done.

  3. I didn’t know what to say to your last post – I was just so sick at heart about the new pup. I am so glad you were able to rescue him. But if they just keep bringing new ones home, how many times can you rescue these babies. Why do they want an animal? It makes no sense to me at all. And my heart is so sad.

  4. WOW! You GO girl! Thank you for being a person of ACTION & not just words! Thank you!

  5. Good for you. I have also liberated abused dogs, cats, and horses. My only wish is that the people who inflict the abuse suffer the same fate as their poor helpless animals. I will never understand why people like your neighbors would even bother to get another dog when it is too much of a bother to care for the one they had. Are they sadistic sociopaths who enjoy watching the suffering of a creature who can’t fight back? I only hope the next one they bring home is rabid and bites the hand that does not feed it.

  6. Please watch out for yourself, too. Pictures of the backyard where the dog was chained, pictures of the house address, the pictures you have of the puppy’s ears, etc. Record everything in a notebook. The Humane Society in Tucson also might be able to help you and the puppy or give you referrals.

    Thank you for all you’re doing. Please be careful.


  7. What makes me sick...

    Well, that’s ‘what makes me sick’. Absolutely no pun intended. Very well done! Bless you. I agree with earlier comments, why DO they want a dog? The poor thing looks sick, starving, infested, and not very big. Pet/companion, for the right people maybe. Guard dog? Nope. I hope the little one gets a good home. I’m wondering where THEY got the puppy from. Glad the editorial work has picked up! Oh, and please, call me Dum Dum!

  8. Wonderful!

  9. Thanks everybody for your support and encouragement. I think the dogs are coming from Mexico, a place where animal-lovers would slit their wrists. Many people here travel back and forth over the border frequently because that’s where their families are.

    Many cultures do not not respect animals so I don’t know why they want them. This little dog was no watchdog, and neither was the first one, though she was bigger, she was too weak to bark. The vet said this little one was over a year old, so the first year of her life was obviously spent in some kind of hell.

    We don’t have a tick problem here, my dogs never get them, so she must have been kept in a filthy place for the first year of her life. She had serious worms and a highly contagious fungal infection on her skin.

    I researched why animals are so mistreated throughout Latin America and many other countries and islands (we have dogs from St. Martin, a beautiful resort island until you leave the hotels and enter the slums where they poison dogs and cats on a regular basis, and from Puerto Rico, another hell for animals). I know people who visit these places and try to rescue animals, but it’s a hopeless cause. They get a few but it’s nothing in comparison. In the Middle East, dogs are considered filthy vermin. In cities all over the US, Muslim taxi drivers refuse to carry blind people with seeing-eye dogs, and we allow it. We pretty much let anybody do anything here due to “it’s a culture thing.”

    The prevailing opinion is “it’s not their fault, they are poor and/or ignorant.” I do not understand how this can be either a reason or an excuse. Poverty does not breed cruelty, it breeds more poverty. Look at the homeless people here who hang on to their dogs. If this is indeed a “culture thing” then no amount of good fortune is going to change their treatment of animals. Mexico is an extremely religious country, but it’s a whole different kind of Christianity than I’m used to seeing here.

  10. To refuse to carry a blind person with a seeing-eye dog by a taxi driver of any denomination would not be allowed in Australia; multiculturalism has gone too far: at least in the UK and here, the term is in swift decline as integration into the mainstream becomes the central doctrine.

    We have long liberated slaves; the liberation of animals should be next; it is good to be answerable to your conscience; what is wrong with these people?!

  11. Debra — You are a saint in human clothing. Bless you, again.


  12. In cities all over the US, Muslim taxi drivers refuse to carry blind people with seeing-eye dogs, and we allow it. We pretty much let anybody do anything here due to “it’s a culture thing.”

    If you have a problem transporting certain types of people taxi driving is probably not for you. As far as the “it’s a cultural thing” this going to be the next Twinkie Defense? Yes, your honor, I did kill my neighbor for abusing her dog, but you must understand, it’s a cultural thing.

  13. Your courage and kindness have really earned my highest respect. Thank you. Thank you.

    Now if I could only get my hands on the person(s) that neglected this animal.

  14. I also wonder why these people would want an animal. If they chain the dog up, it can’t protect their house. Why else would they want to keep a dog? Do they use them as bait dogs in dog fighting? And if these dogs are coming from Mexico, isn’t bringing animals across the border also illegal? Your area does not have ticks, and now they have introduced ticks into your ecosystem.

    You are a badass hero for sure. I might say you’re a little Byronic. Actually, a lot Byronic. Awesome.

    • “Why” is the big mystery, isn’t it.

      Pit bull fighting is common along the border and in Mexico and yes they use bait dogs. This isn’t the case with my mean neighbors, they just have no soul. When the guy’s mother was alive I found homes for a couple dogs she didn’t want, but at least she turned them over to me. The kid (in his thirties) has no such sense. And his family members who come and go are just as cold-hearted.

      You’re supposed to have documents when bringing a dog back to the US but enforcement varies. Depends on Port of Entry, which lane you’re in, what agent you get, how often you go back and forth. Don’t forget that many people who work here live in Mexico.

      The minute you cross the border into Mexico you enter third-world decay. Stray animals roam the streets. You can walk across too, we do it to buy cheap meds. I’ll bet Americans don’t know that Mexican kids walk over and go to school in the US, teachers say it’s impossible to keep track of addresses because the families are so big. They say everybody needs an education so they don’t even try. (I have customers who teach in Naco and think immigration laws are “fascist” but that’s another story.) If only the US education they’re getting taught them respect for all life I wouldn’t mind paying for it.

  15. I’m glad you are there for these animals, Debra. Whatever the afterlife is like, there’s a special place in it for you.

  16. Why does it bother me?

    You dear lady are incredible. And a wonder. Take these pictures start another anonymous blog and NAME and SHAME these people.
    That poor little pup.
    I agree with you about the culture thing. When we lived in Malta the treatment of animals was horrendous, this is another ‘so called Christian’ country. I am almost positive the Bible says we should treat Gods creatures with care and respect. It was also another country that survived on tourism and masked its poverty. I guess people will always exploit anyone or any creature they deem weaker.

    There are other comments here that make very good points about how this treatment would not wash in the UK and other places. I am a big fan of multi-cultured society. And I shall tell you why in the most childish of terms, when I was about 19 I worked in a call centre, it was fast approaching Christmas and I had just been told I had to work, I was really put out, my friend who I worked with said she would swap days with me so I could have the big day off, you know why? Because she was Muslim so that day meant nothing to her, and I had traded with her earlier in the year so she could celebrate a festival with her family. And I know even if I hadn’t traded she would have swapped, because she worked Boxing day for another girl at the company who had just started.
    THAT is embracing peoples cultures and respecting peoples backgrounds. It can work.
    But what needs to be understood is if you go somewhere new, you do not bring your bad habits with you, I understand remaining true to your history, but if that involves flagrantly breaking the laws of the country you OPTED to move too, than off with your head. I know I sound a bit irrational and crazy but I like animals more than people I think, and I personally would like to move to your neighbourhood and tie these vile people up, starve them, infect their skin and generally treat them in the same way to see if they understood that it is wrong to treat ANYTHING without the utmost humanity…

  17. Oh, Debra, what good you are doing for these animals. They deserve to be treated better and good for you and your kindness!!!

  18. I actually stole my neighbor’s dog once. It was freezing outside and this little 6-month old (short haired) Chahuahua was shivering on their wooden slate porch on a thin wet carpet. Most of the time he lived in a kitty carrier, but this night he was out. He had no food or water or dog house to cuddle in.

    He now has a happy home with my aunt. Kudos for you and for all of us who take risks to save our littlest neighbors.

  19. My friend for all that you do I have nominated you the Versatile Blogger award. Please visit my site for instructions on how to pick up this award:

  20. Wish you would, Debra! I love reading your blog, and obviously many others do, too! 🙂

  21. Debra

    Sadly this kind of treatment is not rare. I live in Northern Ireland and I’m upset to say that I am living with a similar circumstance at the moment. My neighbour moved in back at Easter, and with her and her young daughter came a grumpy jack russel whoom the daughter introduced once as Axel. I never really got a good look at him for months as he seemed to stick to the other part of the yard, I of course believed that he was in the house.

    In the summer i ended up off on extended sick leave, and my dad started doing work in my garden, that was the first time we got a good look at poor Axel next door. 😦 he was so skinny, you could see all the bones in his spine and all his ribs. he had pressure sores on his hip and knee joints and tail. This was made all the more painful when my jack russel was sniffing him through the fence and shes a svelt streak of solid muscle.

    there were some other kids in the area who were opening his gate to play, and then he would growl and they would run away… so i coaxed him back in with some food, and he slowly became my friend. I probably could have taken him with me then, but i was trying to to make assumptions. my dad rescued a very skinny sick stray dog a few years ago and after months of vet treatment and good living, they agreed to put her to sleep when her organs were failing, she had diabetes was almost blind and as i said, even with treatment hadnt put on much weight when she got really sick. my dad tried everything. so i didnt want to assume that this dog was neglected right away.

    I tried calling the dog warden and the SPCA, and i got shuffled around alot. eventually i left a message with the details of the dog and address… Nothing was ever done.

    After a month with no improvement, i began feeding him every evening after dark, under a small gap in the fence, now he comes looking for me. he ALWAYS gulps down the food. even now, 3 months into feeding him.

    He has put on a fair bit of weight, no visible spine, still a bit of his ribs and his tummy is very concave. i even gave him a worm dose just to be on the safe side.

    What I’m really worried about now, is this winter. last year was extreme. -10 degrees and lower for over a month. if we have another winter like this, i fear for Axel’s survival. I may just let him “escape” again and this time bring him home to me until i can take him to a proper home. I doubt it would be difficult, we are good buddies now, (hes still a little grumpy) he comes running up and down the fence when i go into the garden with my dogs.

    I just wanted to say thanks, for making me feel good about doing what i can, as you have. Down side is since no one did anything before… if i tried to report him again… hes now put on weight. and i dont have the heart to just STOP feeding him.

    • Hello Tracy, thanks for writing with your story. You would not believe how many search engine terms show up on my stat page (how people find your blog) that say “what to do about neighbor’s starving dog” or “neighbor’s dog abused,” etc. People don’t know what to do for all these various reasons we’ve discussed here.

      To all of you, TAKE THE DOG. You’re a wonderful person to be caring for poor Axel, but you’re right about winter on the way. He won’t make it. You won’t be able to sleep. Authorities are useless.

      To anyone in Southern Arizona, contact me and I will help you if I can.

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