By the time she was discovered lying next to a dumpster in Florida, this Rottweiler was so weak, exhausted and emaciated she couldn’t walk or even lift her head. She was swarming with ticks and fleas, and her rescuer, Isabel Zapata, knew there’d be quite the job ahead to get this beautiful dog on her road to recovery.
This Rottweiler Never Knew Kindness. Until Now
She was tossed away like garbage, abandoned in an area of Florida where far too many dogs have already been dumped, with many being killed on busy nearby streets. However, this sweet dog had luck on her side because Zapata made sure she was rescued and recorded it with her cellphone.
“Oh my God,” she can be heard saying. “We are going to take you to the doctor right now baby, okay?”
Zapata contacted Gulfstream Guardian Angels Rottweiler Rescue (GGARR). The volunteer organization is dedicated to rescuing Rottweilers, 7NewsMiami reports.
“She sent me a video that broke my heart really,” said GGARR’s Yolanda Ramirez.
Fortunately, the organization took this sweet dog in and even gave her a name — Susanna. And, Ramirez noted, this is one “very, very loving dog, really.” But that’s the most amazing thing about dogs, really. They can be loving and kind, even when treated abominably, as Susanna was.
But luckily, that’s all in her past.
Since Susanna couldn’t walk Zapata and her fellow rescuers gently lifted her onto a tarp, then placed her in a truck and took her to the nearest animal hospital, The Dodo reports.
As soon as she arrived, hospital staff began administering fluids and ran blood work. Susanna seemed to be paralyzed, and no one knew why. And they also didn’t know if she’d be able to walk again. So the hospital kept her a few more days, running tests and making sure she was stabilized. Then she was transferred to Clint Moore Animal Hospital in Boca Raton.
As the staff reviewed her blood work and files, the sad reality of Susanna’s past came to light. While she didn’t have any broken bones or spinal damage, other physical evidence showed that humans had been cruel to her.
“She had some arthritis and physical deformities to her legs, which make us just think she was just stuffed into a crate since puppyhood,” said Laurie Kardon, a board member for the rescue. “She was likely in there most of her life and used for breeding. And when breeders are done with dogs they just dump them.”
This Rottweiler Wasn’t Going To Give Up
And Susanna has plenty of courage, so she’s not looking back
“The first time I saw her, she lifted up her head and licked my face,” Kardon noted. “I said ‘There it is. This girl wants to live. We were going to do everything in our power to get her going again.”
Rescuers and hospital staff put their heads together and created a health plan to help her get her strength back. They made sure she was on a high-quality diet to help her gain weight and started her on a regimen of physical therapy to strengthen her legs. And she was given pain medication because her bones and muscles were so stiff and weak.
Within a week Susanna regained much of her strength. The group tested her to see how she would do in a rehabilitation pool, and amazingly, she was able to walk.
“We were all in tears,” Kardon said. “It was such a relief.”
And Susanna was eager to keep moving, so her veterinarians made sure she took dips in the pool frequently. This lovable Rottweiler was regaining her confidence, and she now wagged her tail all the time. Best of all, the spark was back in her eyes.
“She is just so happy,” Kardon said. “It’s probably for the first time in her life she’s felt this way.”
It’s now been a month since Susanna was rescued, and she’s finally strong enough to play with other dogs, but all of this still has to be a bit tentative while she continues her recovery. She’s also discovered the luxury of rolling in the grass — something she may never have done before, due to her cruel confinement.
Because this sweet dog is doing so well, Kardon said she’s anxiously awaiting the day when Susanna will be ready for adoption into a loving home.
“She’s really a testament to her breed,” Kardon said. “She is strong, determined and brave, but also so sweet and loving. She’s got the heart of a Rottweiler, that’s for sure.”
If you’d like to support Susannah’s recovery, you can donate to Gulfstream Guardian Angels Rottweiler Rescue. You can also watch her being rescued in the video below.