Stephenville animal shelter volunteers caring for ailing dog

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The future looks bright for a white German Shepherd recently seized by RCMP outside a residence in Burgeo and brought to the Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (SCAPA) in Stephenville.

Gwen Samms and Chance share some quality time at the Society for the Protection and Care of Animals in Stephenville.

Found to be suffering from dehydration and starvation by Dr. Jessica Boyd at the West Coast Veterinary Clinic in Stephenville, Chance (as he has been re-named) is recovering well, putting on weight, and thoroughly enjoying all the love and attention he is receiving from SCAPA volunteers.

“Chance loves being off chain and spending time in his enclosure during the day, but he doesn't like being out for long periods of time by himself,” said Gwen Samms, the shelter’s manager.

“He needs our reassurance that we won't leave him, so I let him in and out again often to show him that he is safe and that we won't forget him.”

Ms. Samms noted the trauma from the neglect he has endured has resulted in a fear aggression and left him wary of humans, but he is slowly learning to trust again.

Chance will also soon receive help of Ken Reid, who provides training and behavioural services at the Topsailstar Pet Centre in St. John’s.

He needs our reassurance that we won't leave him, so I let him in and out again often to show him that he is safe and that we won't forget him. Gwen Samms

Funds will be raised for Chance to make the journey across the island and stay at the centre for as long as necessary.

Some Burgeo residents have already been raising money on Chance’s behalf, including teacher Jennifer Noel Hann and her students at Burgeo Academy. They held a fundraiser on Feb. 13 and 14 and collected $473.15.

“This dog deserves a second chance,” Ms. Samms said. “And through community support and the expert care of Ken Reid who has agreed to work with him, I believe there’s a lot of reason to be hopeful that before long he’ll be in a new home with a kind, loving family. The other hope I have is that the law will do what it is meant to do, that charges will be laid, and that justice will be served.”

Organizations: West Coast Veterinary Clinic, Topsailstar Pet Centre, Burgeo Academy

Geographic location: Stephenville, Burgeo

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Recent comments

  • Pat LeBlanc
    February 20, 2014 - 22:35

    I have followed this group at SCAPA for two years now since they rescued the poor frozen cat , Trooper , and it never ceases to amaze me the wonderful care they give these rescued animals. You can see in the eyes that the cats and dogs finally realize that they are safe, loved and finally get forever homes. Chance is another great success story reaching me from Newfoundland .

  • Pat LeBlanc
    February 20, 2014 - 22:31

    I have followed this group at SCAPA for two years now since they rescued the poor frozen cat , Trooper , and it never ceases to amaze me the wonderful care they give these rescued animals. You can see in the eyes that the cats and dogs finally realize that they are safe, loved and finally get forever homes. Chance is another great success story reaching me from Newfoundland .

  • Kelly Baker
    February 19, 2014 - 18:52

    Can I have this dog after its training to be a Service Dog. And, I cannot afford a high price for the dog as I'm on Medicaid and SSI. I have Epilepsy, Bipolar, PTSD, Major Mobility issues, Extreme Chronic Pain Issues, etc...