Tracy Whittington and Labi from Kinshasa, Congo

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Human: Tracy Whittington

Canine: Labi

Location: Kinshasa, Congo

Type: Basenji / Mutt mix

Our Story:

While serving in Africa, I met a scrawny, giant-eared street dog living along the banks of the Congo River. The local kids threw rocks at her, and the other dogs beat her up. She had a grey, hairless patch on her side from where Congolese soldiers had tried to set her on fire. She hid in the tall grasses, and all my tempting her with food never brought her closer than a few feet away. I soon realized she was starving…and pregnant. The puppies were born shortly thereafter, and I knew it was time to trap her. I fashioned a lasso out of a dog leash, drew her near with food, and tossed it over her head. She put up very little resistance and followed me docilely to my car. I climbed into the sewer and found her one remaining puppy as well. They slept on my balcony for a week while being treated for fleas and tapeworms. When the puppy was older, he was adopted by a missionary family, but Labi, as I named her, stayed with me. She is now 8 years old and has traveled the world – from Africa to Canada to Washington DC to Bolivia, where I live now. She is gentle with humans, patient with cats, and a wonderful street dog ambassador. My husband and I just wrote her autobiography – A Street Dog’s Story: The Almost 100% True Adventures of Labi, which is available on Amazon. She even has her own blog – Street Dog Story – where she (okay, we) follow news about street dogs from around the world.