Personal insights into the
rescue of Mr Grey
When fear turns into love
(Impressions by Klaus Spielbüchler)
During our stay at the dog shelter in Glina/Romania, the animal welfare worker Joana had told us about a dog that had suffered badly and was now staying in a shelter near the Romanian/Bulgarian border.
She told us that the dog was found lying on the street with its throat cut. This statement alone makes you shiver... Joana rescued the dog and - although his condition was more than critical - took him to an animal hospital. Miraculously, the cut through his throat missed the carotid artery by only millimetres and so he could be successfully operated on in the veterinary hospital. Unfortunately, Joana had no room for follow-up treatment for the dog, which she had already named "Mr. Grey" because of his appearance, and took him to a shelter near the Bulgarian border with her friend.
We told Dieter Ehrengruber about this dog and he was immediately convinced that we had to save this dog. If this dog has such a strong will to survive, he deserves to live well protected and well cared for.
These arguments were of course understandable to us and yet we were so unsure whether this dog could really be reintegrated into a normal life. He is a big dog, similar to a German shepherd, does he get along with other dogs at all, does he - and what is even more important - can he build up trust with humans again...? All our concerns were allayed with one sentence from Dieter Ehrengruber: "I'm sure you'll manage...".
So we set off with Joana for the border, remote and far from civilisation we arrived at the shelter. Joana had already informed her friend that we would take Mr. Grey to us. She explained to us that only she can put Mr. Grey in the dog carrier and only she can put on the chest harness... Our concerns were not lessened by this.
Through a crack in the door I was able to take a quick look at Mr. Grey - he was so scared, so cautious, unsure of what was going to happen to him now... Together we then put Mr. Grey in the boot with the dog transport box and just one look at him was enough for him to growl at the top of his lungs....
When we arrived back in Glina, we had to let Mr. Grey out of the transport box. Unfortunately, he had pulled the leash, which was still sticking out of the box, towards him during the transport - so one of us had to reach into the box to hold the leash. Slowly I opened the door and Mr. Grey growled again at the top of his lungs, even more slowly I reached my arm into the transport box, got hold of the leash and at the same moment Mr. Grey jumped out of the box. He just wanted to escape, no sign that he wanted to bite or attack me, he just wanted to get away. I approached him slowly without looking at him and luckily I was able to calm him down. I noticed that he relaxed a bit and he got involved with me. I tried to touch him and he lifted his paw, put it on my arm... A sign - THE sign - that he trusted us, that he wanted to go with us.
Once we arrived home in Maria Schmolln, we simply allowed Mr. Grey to rest for the first few days. We talked to him and took him for walks in the meadow. Step by step we got to know each other and the final step of trust came from Mr. Grey. He showed us that he had arrived, that he would accept a new life in safety and contentment and that he wanted to know more about us. We were able to integrate him into a dog group, he has found his place in it, has accepted the flat as his new home, likes to sleep on the couch and watches everything very closely.
It is only thanks to your support, dear Aiderbichl and animal friends, that we are able to help so many dogs in need and give them a loving life until the natural end of their lives. Please continue to support us with a symbolic sponsorship or with a donation. We and our animals thank you from the bottom of our hearts.