Skin and bones and heart

She wears a wide, dusty collar so she must have a name. But I hope I never learn it. That would mean facing the fact there are real live persons who named her–and who allowed her to reach this grotesque state. She’s not the most emaciated dog I’ve ever seen, but very close.

We’ve never met before, but she stands and wags her tail when I enter the kennel. That’s when I notice her seven pups, nestled in clumps in various corners of the bed. Amazingly, they look healthy and well fed.

On the road to recovery…

I hand feed her kibble from the bowl in the corner. She takes it politely, soft mouth, soft eyes. I scratch behind her ears, a nourishment she seems to prefer to the food. She scooches closer, starved it appears, for more than just something to eat.

…but horrifying it got this bad

After a few minutes, she remembers there are other mouths to feed and steps back into her bed to let her pups nurse. She lowers herself in slowly, gingerly, taking care not to squash any limbs or poke a belly with an elbow. More likely, she’d collapse under their bodies; she can’t weigh much more than they do.

The attentive mother

I slip her a few more kibble before saying goodbye. I’ll check in on you again Friday, Beautiful…

Starved for affection as well

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