In the short time she had with Lily, Theresa did her best to make up for years of abuse and neglect she suffered in the puppy mill, writes dogfull
Ever wish you’ll confront the folks that were liable for causing the love of your life, your dog’s, misery?Thersea Strader founded the National Mill Dog Rescue in 2007 in honor of her Italian greyhound Lily – who was a billboard child for the abuse and neglect puppy mill dogs experience.
“Lily spent all of her days confined to alittle , cold wire cage a dark, foul-smelling barn. Never was she faraway from her cage for exercise or socialization. In her dreary confines, Lily was forced to supply one litter after another with no respite. Like all commercial breeding dogs, she was a veritable breeding machine whose worth was measured in just a method – her ability to supply puppies.
By seven years aged , Lily was wiped out . Commonplace within the industry, she had received little to no veterinary care throughout her life, the results of which, for her, was terribly disturbing. thanks to years of no care , poor quality food, rabbit bottle watering and no appropriate chew toys, the roof of Lily’s mouth and mandible , had rotted away. Her chest was riddled with mammary tumors and she or he was absolutely scared of people.”
The Strader family provided Lily with the love, compassion, and veterinary treatment she so desperately needed.
She finally received the care and love she deserved. Image source: National Mill Dog Rescue
In May 2008, Lily gave up the ghost reception , within the arms of her loving adoptive father and family. Just fifteen months after her rescue.
While trying to affect Lily’s passing, Thersea wrote the subsequent potent letter. And while it’s addressed to Lily’s breeder, we hope it’ll strike a note with anyone involved within the breeding or selling of dogs in mills.
Read the letter here, reprinted with permission for National Mill Dog Rescue:
It’s been fifteen months since you and that i first met. quite likely, you remember little or no about me. After all, we met in your world, on your property actually . Since that day, elements of your world became a really big a part of mine. For that, myself and lots of like-minded people are very thankful to you.
In February 2007, I received an email – “50 Italian Greyhounds in need” and thereupon , a telephone number . Having had a lifetime affinity for the breed, I called the amount to seek out out what the story was and the way i’d be ready to help. I’m certain you recognize where this letter goes now.
Yes, February 17, 2007, after 40+ years, your kennel would be going out of business. Time to retire and relax after four decades of mistreating dogs. Five hundred and sixty one dogs would head to the auction blocks that day, 49 were Italian Greyhounds. it had been without question that i might help, though i need to admit, I had no idea what i might come to find out through the method . thanks to transportation issues, i noticed that if I were to be of any use to those dogs, i might need to drive bent Lamar myself. So, on the 16th of February, my daughter and that i headed to Missouri.
Understand, I’ve been involved in dog rescue essentially my entire life – fostering and placing homeless dogs, caring for sick or injured dogs, assisting overpopulated shelters, etc. I even have always known about puppy mills and pet store puppies but haven’t shared my home with anything aside from rescued animals. For the record, i’m NOT AN ANIMAL RIGHTS ACTIVIST. What i’m may be a one that believes within the right to humane treatment for all living things.
Martha, what I witnessed on your property was faraway from humane. many terrified ailing faces, imprisoned in their wire confines, some watching me, but most too fearful to seem into my eyes, so unsure of the way to interpret human contact. that have has caused me countless sleepless nights and to the present very day, the sadness and therefore the fear in their eyes haunts my very being.
I am completely aware that you simply were operating well within USDA standards – what a despicable thought that’s . i’m also aware that in your circles, commercial breeding dogs are considered livestock. Dogs aren’t livestock, Martha. Thousands of years ago, man domesticated dogs to be our protectors, hunters, herders, guardians, but most of all, our companions.
I came home with thirteen of your dogs – nine Italian Greyhounds, two Dachshunds and two Papillons. Not one dog that I had cared for in over 25 years of rescue work came anywhere on the brink of the physical and emotional damage that your dogs had suffered. because it associated with rescuing dogs, subsequent several months would become the education of a lifetime on behalf of me .
The entire purpose of this letter though, is about only one of these dogs, the one who would find her forever home here with my family….. #251 – AKC registered “Reedgate’s Swift Motion”. Oh, the irony of her name – Swift Motion – an Italian greyhound who was never ready to run. Caging her for her entire life stripped her of ever having enough strength in her legs to experience the enjoyment of running. A cruel reality for a breed built to run.
In our home, we cut the chain from her neck, replaced it with a soft collar and named her Lily. At the age of seven years and one month Lily had been let loose.
Lily was one among several of your dogs that was missing her mandible . i’m wondering how you would possibly explain why numerous of your dogs were affected by this condition. i’m wondering if you were ever concerned about their pain or perhaps about how they were ready to eat enough to remain alive. i’m wondering what percentage died in your care from the results of this condition. i’m wondering if you even noticed. I’m very certain you probably did notice one thing beyond the rotting faces though – their ability to supply puppies. That’s what your business is all about – producing puppies, at any expense.
Lily became an absolute treasure in our home. Despite her many health issues and her extreme fear, in time, with many love and care, she found her courage and when she did, nobody was resistant to her love. Men, women and youngsters delivered to tears to listen to her story and to possess the untold pleasure of meeting her. Lily’s life was not about what she could do for you but instead, how we could make it up to her during a warm and loving home.
It was agonizing for our family to observe her suffer through four surgeries to get rid of mammary tumors, to aim to repair her decaying face and to spay her — removing the papery black, pus filled organ that was once her uterus. How selfish of you never to ascertain her pain, just the dollars.
Directly due to your gross neglect, every meal Lily ate was a struggle. We tried numerous foods then many various ways to form it easier for her to eat. But within the end, she had to try to to it her way, the way she learned at your home , the way she kept herself alive for you – picking kibbles out of her bowl, a couple of at a time together with her feet, spreading them round the floor, then rubbing the “good” side of her face along the ground to catch a kibble on her tongue, then extending her neck upwards and swallowing it whole. believe that, Martha. How would you wish to eat only one meal that way?
Do you remember sitting in my car when the auction was over? the blokes were gathering up the dogs that I had “won”. You said to me, “I just love my Italian Greyhounds”. Oh, the thoughts that went through my mind when those words came out of your mouth. You don’t love any dogs, Martha. What you probably did was spend quite forty years of your God given life using dogs for your personal gain. No reference to their physical or mental well-being, just cashing in on their ability to breed . believe the thousands of dogs that skilled your hands – you robbed every single one among them of the straightforward joys they so deserve. an honest meal, a warm and cozy place to sleep, medical attention, and most of all, a person’s companion to form their lives whole.
Lily learned such a lot in our home – about being a loved one , being a dog, being worthy. i will be able to always be bothered that she never learned the way to run or really the way to play. But she learned the way to love and be loved and for that, there are not any words. She changed our lives forever.