Animal rescues

Donating to animal rescues like Pasadena Humane is one way to help on Tuesday, November 30 – Pasadena Star News

Chad, in a wheelchair. (Photo courtesy of Pasadena Humane)

One thing I love about Pasadena is that it’s a giving community. I’ve heard that Pasadena has more nonprofits per capita than any other city in the country. Although I haven’t verified this as a fact, I believe so. We have an incredible number of charities supporting many worthy causes, including organizations serving vulnerable people and animals in our community.

At Pasadena Humane, we provide life-saving care to animals most at risk. During this week of gratitude and giving, I wanted to share with you the story of a special dog that I fondly remember, a three year old Shih Tzu named Chad.

On a very hot day in September, one of our animal control officers was dispatched to the scene of a hit and run accident. A small beige and white dog was hit by a car in the middle of a residential area. The dog was completely disoriented and unable to stand. He was rushed back to the shelter for immediate assessment by our medical team. A veterinary examination revealed that he had suffered a traumatic injury which caused damage to his spine. He was unable to use his hind legs, dragging them as he tried to walk on his two front legs.

Chad, before the grooming. (Photo courtesy of Pasadena Humane)

Chad, as he was soon named by staff, was in critical condition. Fleas were crawling through his dirty, matted fur. And, it was hard to help him because he was terrified of humans. Pain and fear made him lash out, growl and bark whenever anyone approached his kennel.

Despite all the odds against him, our team believed there was still hope for Chad. He started to show signs of improvement over the next few days. While still unable to use his hind legs, he seemed to have less pain and began to eat on his own.

Chad was slowly getting used to human contact and was ready for grooming. As the team shaved their dirty, matted fur, they found itchy skin caused by sore carpets and flea allergies. He began treatment for these conditions and quickly started to feel much better.

Our behavior team began working with Chad once he was medically cleared. They had two main goals: to help her learn to trust people and to teach her how to use a dog wheelchair.

With a new haircut and the loving, loving care provided by our staff, Chad immediately took to the wheelchair, hurtling down the hallway to our shelter clinic like an Olympic sprinter. Chad’s transformation has been remarkable. The once terrified boy now greeted new people with a flick of his tail before leaning in to stroke them. Although he can never regain the use of his hind legs, Chad now leads a happy life as a beloved pet.

Saving the lives of animals like Chad is a real community effort. Our team is only able to provide this extraordinary level of vital care with readers like you. I am so grateful for the support of so many generous animal lovers who help transform the lives of animals like Chad.

This Tuesday, November 30, it’s GivingTuesday, a global day of generosity dedicated to unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world. If you can, I encourage you to get involved by supporting your favorite charity on this special day.

Dia DuVernet is the President and CEO of Pasadena Humane.