“His face tells his whole history,” says Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter staff member Jackie Panjoj about Bredge, the dog who, after years of abuse, is finally learning how to trust.
Bredge doesn’t understand why his face is covered in scars, why he’s missing teeth, or why he’s living in a kennel; after all he’s suffered, the only thing Bredge cares about is being loved.
Bredge was found in the early fall of 2014 with a heavy chain around his neck. He had escaped from his abuser, who likely kept him tied up in the backyard for all of his life. When he was discovered, Bredge had old and fresh bite marks; the right side of his face drooped from the trauma. It’s possible Bredge was used as a bait dog in a dogfighting operation.
Bredge spent most of his life being tormented and harmed, and still Jackie says there’s “not a mean bone in his body.” He’s never learned how to just be a dog, and being in the shelter environment has been confusing and scary for him. With time, however, Jackie and fellow staff member Melissa Fogarty have taught him basic commands, and he’s getting more confident every day.
When Jackie approaches his kennel, Bredge devolves into wiggles, his tail wagging so quickly that his whole body goes with it. He spent his first few weeks withdrawn; he was gentle and sweet, but he couldn’t allow himself to fully accept the affection and kindness he always deserved. Now, he loves with total abandon, instantly turning over on his back for a belly rub when he sees a friendly face.
Bredge and Jackie have a ritual they do every time she takes him out. They go for a walk, he does his business, practices his commands, and then they just sit down together, enjoying each other’s company. Bredge has discovered kisses, and he loves nothing more than when Jackie lowers her face to his.
In order to live the happy life he should have had from the very beginning, Bredge needs our help.
His buddies at the shelter are hoping to raise the funds to get Bredge out of the kennels and into the arms of Forever Home Rehabilitation Center, where he will be trained, loved, and prepared for adoption. He is currently at a large municipal shelter, where people adore him but where he has limited resources. If he goes to Forever Home, Bredge’s life will be saved.
Bredge has taught everyone at the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter about the true meaning of unconditional hope. In the aftermath of unspeakable hardship, Bredge only wants to learn how to be the best dog he can be. Melissa has the word “resilience” tattooed on the side of her back, and she’s never seen a purer example of fortitude and courage than she has in this white and tan dog.
Melissa calls Forever Home “Bredge’s second chance,” but in fact, Bredge has never had a first chance. He was not cherished and cared for the way all dogs are meant to be. Humankind betrayed Bredge in the worst possible way. What happened to Bredge can never be undone, but we can prove to this sweet boy that for all the evil in the world, there is also immeasurable good. Please consider making a donation here.
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