Mint Creek Valley Kennel

Mint Creek Valley Kennel


By Carol A.T. Lint

April 28, 1996

Newsen Zoey

January 17, 1992-June 21, 2004

	Zoey first came into our lives on January 26, 1996. I received a call from
	a "breeder" who wanted me to take some more of their dogs and find homes  
for them, as they were getting out of breeding and could not care for them
due to health problems in the family. They still had a male and Zoey to be 
placed. The male was literally emaciated, while Zoey appeared to be in fair 
weight, but if you felt her you could tell that she too was thin (she 
is a brush coat, which masked some of her thinness). The male was very 
friendly, but Zoey was extremely shy.  When we got home, I fed, wormed 
and vaccinated the male.  I fed and wormed Zoey (she was supposed to be bred
so she couldn't be vaccinated).  My husband put a choker collar and 
leash on her and took her outside for a walk.  It was dark and    
raining lightly. She was walking well on the lead, sniffing the ground.  
Jim saw a piece of plastic on the ground and picked it up and tossed it out 
of the yard so the dogs could not get it.  That startled Zoey and she jerked  
the lead out of his hand.  She would not come to him and was running the 
fence testing the gates looking for a place to escape.  Jim came to 
the house to get me, so I could try to help him corner her.  When we 
went out she was nowhere to be seen.  He went back in to get a 
flashlight. We checked the whole yard.  She was not in it.  The yard 
is about an acre with a creek running through it.  The week before we 
had heavy rains and the creek had been swollen bending up the flood 
gate.  We figured she must have gone into the creek and gone under the 
flood gate.  We searched and called for her most of the night but could
not find any sign of her.  It made me heart sick to think of her out 
there in the cold rain with no food, dragging a lead that could get 
caught on anything, and wearing a choker collar.  I would go out every 
hour and listen ,  hoping that if she got hung up on something she 
might bark. (We live in the hills of Southern Ohio.  We have 58 acres 
of hills and woods.  We are surrounded on each side by several hundred 
acres of isolated hills and woods.)  There was no sight or sound of her.

	The next day I called our local "Advertiser" that has papers 
in all of the surrounding counties and took out a "lost" ad.  I also 
started calling neighbors, and called the "breeder" to tell them that 
Zoey had gotten away and might try to head home.  They were not 
concerned.  They said she did that when they first got her and she 
came back after several hours.  But we had only had her here 1/2 hr, 
before she ran off, so she really had no reason to consider  this home.
She ran off on a Friday night, on Sunday two different neighbors north 
of us saw her and tried to catch her but she would not come to them and 
ran off.  I started getting calls from my ad, from people sighting her,
usually within a mile radius of our home.  But no one could catch her, 
and she was still dragging the leash.  I called the "breeder", asking 
them to come up and call her, thinking maybe she would come to them, 
since she was familiar with them.  They did not come.  I was so 
frustrated.  Several times my daughter (Michaiah) or I saw her, and 
called to her.  She would pause for a moment and look at us and then 
take off running in the opposite direction.  Once Michaiah followed 
her for hours, but every time she started to catch up with her , Zoey 
would run faster again.  Every timed it snowed, we would go out and try 
to follow tracks to see if we could figure out where she was sleeping, 
thinking we might be able to trap her or drug her if we knew where she 
stayed.  But after following footprints forever, we gave up when they 
never seemed to lead to a shelter.   I contacted the surrounding dog 
shelters in case they caught her, and I was able to borrow a live 
animal "have a heart" trap from our local dog warden.  We tried placing 
it in several different vicinities that she had been seen in.  But all 
I ever caught was one cat, and several opossums, and raccoons.  Although 
once when Jim checked the trap for me, it was empty, but he thought 
that there were fresh truck tracks next to it.  Well, by now, March 8th, 
the dog warden needed his trap back to catch a dog running loose in 
town.  Zoey did seem to be in good weight when ever she was spotted, 
and she did not look like she was nursing any puppies. (Thank goodness!)

	The next week on March 14th, I received two calls from people 
supposedly seeing her near the town of Amanda, which is 10-12 miles 
away from me.  At first I thought it couldn't be her because all along 
she had stayed within a 1-2 mile radius of our house.  I figured it 
must be a dog local to that area that just got loose and was running 
for the day.  But three days later someone called me and said that they 
had just seen her on a main road that runs from Amanda down toward my 
house, and she was just 7 miles from me.  He said that a pickup truck 
hit her and knocked her down, but she got up and ran off across a field 
and into some brush.  He lost sight of her after that.  My daughter and 
I immediately jumped into my car and drove over there and walked the 
field calling and looking for her.  There was no sign of her.  I went 
to several houses and let them know that I was looking for her.  Two 
days later I got a call from one of the people in that area who saw her 
earlier that day, getting into the trash at the end of someone's drive.  
The next day I looked for her again, but did not see her.  That night, 
someone else called me and said they saw her at the end of a drive in 
that same area.  Two days later on March 23, I received a call from a 
neighbor who said that they saw her 5 minutes earlier on a back road 
about 2 miles from my house.  They called her, but she ran.  Jim and 
Michaiah rushed over there and looked for her , but again she was gone.  
It was so frustrating to be so close and yet so far.  And I was worried 
she would starve, get hit or shot before we could get her.  Here I had 
tried to rescue her and instead she was in a worse and more dangerous 
situation.  Often there were discrepancies in the description of the 
dog seen.  Some said she was red, others said chocolate, and some said 
fawn.  She is chocolate, but being out in the sun, she turned reddish, 
and finally bleached to almost blonde on her back.  I think that she 
might have gotten caught in the trap, and that someone saw her and took 
her up to Amanda.  She must have gotten away from them and tried to head 
back down to this area that she had become familiar with.

	I didn't receive any more calls for almost 4 weeks.  I had 
begun to think that she had finally gotten caught and choked herself, 
starved, or gotten hit and killed.  The other possibility was that 
someone had caught her, and either had not seen my "lost" ad, or they 
wanted to keep her and didn't want to call me.  Then at ten minutes 
before midnight on April 18, I got a call from someone 20 miles 
southeast of me.  They had just seen her on a main highway going into 
the county seat.  The next morning I called the dog warden in the 
county seat to let him know that she was spotted in his area, hoping 
that they might be able to catch her.  Monday morning, April 22, he 
called me and said that he had her.  She had been hit by a car just 
south of the shelter on Sunday.  They went and picked her up and kept 
her overnight.  (I was disappointed that they either didn't call me on 
Sunday when they got her, so that I could get her to a vet immediately, 
or that they didn't take her to a vet themselves.)  Well, I picked her 
up on Monday and drove her straight to my vet.  She had a broken left 
front leg, a dislocated right rear hip, nerve damage to the lower part 
of the left rear leg, and a few cuts and abrasions.  So far she seems 
to be coming along, but we are having difficulty keeping the sling on 
to hold the dislocated leg in place long enough for the torn tendons 
and ligaments to heal.  They taped it again, but now I am having 
trouble with the foot swelling from the bandages being too tight.  I 
have to carry her out to the bathroom, and then she hobbles a little 
with her front legs (one is in a cast), as I support her rear end by 
using a towel as sling around her abdomen.  She wags her tail when she 
sees me coming, and has not growled at me. (She did try to snap at me 
once when I was doctoring her sores.)  She is eating and drinking, and 
I hope that her legs heal, so she can get around on her own.  The vets 
say she may have to have surgery on the dislocated hip to repair it if 
it does not heal properly on its own.  But right now we are just taking 
it one day at a time.  I feel that it is a miracle that Zoey has made 
it this far, and I am thankful that we finally got her back.  
Hopefully, this story will have a happy ending.

PS:  May 28, 1996, Zoey has her cast off 
and is up and walking (some-times even running) around.  She has almost 
full use of the leg with nerve damage (the foot still buckles under 
sometimes which has caused her toes to swell to an enormous size) and 
she doesn't seem to have any trouble with the leg that was dislocated, 
or the one that was broken. She is in good weight and seems to be 
accepting the other dogs, showing no signs of aggression towards them 
or to strangers.

June 17, 1996, Kurt A. Hoellrich, C.P.O., Charles Matthews and the 
staff at Hanger Orthopedics, graciously offered there services and fit 
Zoey with a custom designed orthopedic shoe for her nerve damaged leg.  
It holds her foot in it's proper position so that it doesn't buckle 
under.  This is allowing the swollen irritated toes to heal and return 
to normal size.

October 1, 1996, Zoey now can walk (even run) on all four legs normally.  
She no longer buckles her foot under.  She seems to have regained the 
feeling in that leg and has full control of it and her foot and she now 
runs and plays with the best of them.  The toes have returned to near 
normal size. So eventually this story had a happy ending for Zoey and 
she can have a home here with me forever. 

But some dogs are not so lucky. Hopefully everyone will try to do there share to help these abused and unwanted dogs, so that there can be many more happy endings.

UPDATE: June 21, 2004, Zoey slipped quietly away in her sleep 
midmorning today. She was 12 1/2 yrs old now, and has spent 
the last 8 1/2 yrs of her life, happy and healthy here with us 
as one of our pets. Rest in Peace now my dear Zoey. You will be 
very sadly missed, your mommy Carol

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This page was written and Last Updated June 21, 2004 by Carol A.T. Lint

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