AUSTIN (KXAN) — The past year was a good one for the Austin Animal Center. They reported saving approximately 95 percent of the nearly 18,000 animals that ended up in their facility during 2015. That is a lot of lives saved, but one in particular came against high odds.
Just a couple of weeks before Christmas, the owners of a 14-year-old blind dog with health problems came to the intake facility to surrender their pet. “Blackie” faced a long road and vets thought the most humane thing to do was possibly euthanasia.
“He had not had the greatest of lives,” said AAC volunteer Brunie Drumond. “They felt like the dog must be suffering and would not make it past a week.”
Blackie had lived his whole life outdoors according to the owners when he was surrendered. After so many years of hardship, Drumond wanted to foster the dog. The idea was to give Blackie a place to pass away rather than a cold, steel cage.
“My goal was to take him home and let him live out his last few days in a home instead of a stressful shelter,” she said.
But with a warm place to sleep, new cat and dog friends at Drumond’s home and plenty of love and attention, Blackie is in no hurry to leave. What was expected to be just a few days is now over a month and Blackie’s last days may turn out to be his best.
“He really has been doing better,” said Drumond. “He goes on walks every day. More than anything, he likes relaxing in the room with us. He likes being part of things.”
It is quite the turnaround for a dog which was very close to euthanasia, but Drumond said being surrendered by his owners is possibly the best thing that could have happened for Blackie. And although she knows the inevitable will one day happen, she said giving Blackie extra time and the life he had been missing is all well worth it.
“I would rather have heartbreak about something I care about and matters to me.”