Everyone loves cute dogs… but all dogs are beautiful on the inside, and the ones that look a little different are worthy of our love too. Some animal shelters have said that “ugly” dogs are being adopted less often and have had to encourage adopters to see past superficial glances.
A dog’s physical defect caused his family to abandon him, not caring what happened to him… but kind rescuers gave him the care and love he needed.
In 2015, animal control officers in Huntsville, Texas picked up a mongrel dog named Bjarni, who had a very striking appearance.
The dog was missing half of its nose, as well as part of its lips. He had crooked teeth and had bite marks, as if he had been badly attacked by another animal. He struggled to eat and breathe.
Animal control was able to track down Bjarni’s owners… but sadly, they didn’t care at all that their dog was returned to them and reportedly left him for dead.
“They no longer wanted to hold him and were content to let him die,” the St. Francis Angels wrote on Facebook.
With his family turning their backs on him, Bjarni was taken back to the shelter… but luckily, some guardian angels arrived to give the poor dog the attention he needed…
Anne Graber, the founder of the Texas animal rescue group St. Francis’ Angels, learned of Bjarni’s story and took him in, determined to keep him in her care until he recovered and was adopted into a new home. .
Despite the dog’s disfigurements, Ella Graber says the dog still had a playful energy, calling him “vivid and engaging.”
“He is totally unaware of the limitations and disfigurement of him,” she told the Huffington Post. “He loves anything that moves.”
“He won over even the most bossy and aggressive of dogs at our location,” she told the Daily Mail.
Graber was determined to fix Bjarni’s face and reached out to groups that could perform the surgery. She found veterinarian Jason Balara of Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists, who agreed to fix the dog’s nose.
For medical costs, St. Francis’ Angels raised money through their Facebook page. And people outgrew it in a big way: According to the Daily Mail, good-hearted donors donated $5,100 for the surgery.
The procedure involved reconstructing Bjarni’s face and realigning his nose with his sinus cavities. Graber said that in addition to making the dog “very cute and very adoptable,” the surgery would improve his health by making it easier for him to breathe and eat.
And it was a huge success: Bjarni came out looking like a brand new dog.
The surgery gave Bjarni a fresh start…and a few months later, he got a new family.
In February 2016, a couple took the recovered dog to a happy new home. “His mom and dad fell in love the first time they saw him,” St. Francis wrote on Facebook.
Graber says that she was happy to help Bjarni, saying that she knows how things could easily have been different for him if she hadn’t been helped.
“I truly believe with every fiber of my being, all animals have a set course to teach us humanity and compassion,” he told the Huffington Post. “It just gives us something to reach for.”
It’s a very happy ending for a dog who went through a lot of hardship, all made possible through the work of some kind-hearted rescuers.
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