Conley…unaware of his difference

Written by Sharon Rose

“Heart of the Matter” has the potential to mean many different things to different individuals. When it comes to saving the lives of innocent animals in a community to me it means the collective effort on the part of compassionate individuals. A recent “poster dog”, so to speak, for Foothills Humane Society is a four week old puppy brought in by a man who could not bear to see it suffer. After collecting the pup from an acquaintance, who had not reached out for help, he brought it to the shelter where a 7-inch long, 16th inch gauge bendable wire was discovered to be running up the inside of a rear leg. Let’s not mention that the pup was too young to have been taken from his mother, but only God knows how long it suffered the pain of such an injury as it slipped into shock. Within seconds of arrival the baby was rushed to a veterinarian and as suspected the leg was too damaged to save so it was surgically removed. Although I know this dog will not know it is different from others with four legs, he nonetheless has begun life without the care he deserves. As predicted, the heart of a FHS staff member opened wide and she is fostering Conley during his recovery period. Would you believe that during multiple exams and while suffering the agony one might only imagine prior to surgery, this precious puppy never let out a complaint? The “Heart of the Matter” in this regard is compassion. The man who collected the dog, the staff member who rushed the pup to the surgeon who dropped everything to come to its aid, the staff member who allows one more innocent into her already crowded home,  the many individuals who make great effort to rescue such animals in our community, collectively their compassion wins the day. At the very center of “The Heart of the Matter” are the innocent animals in this community who need our help, who deserve our help, and whose lives have been changed forever. Help us spread the message that it truly is easy to reach out for help. Bravo to all at “The Heart of the Matter”.

heart of the matter: conley

Book excerpt 1 by Lennie Rizzo

A Voice in the Hills: Book Excerpt 1

A Voice in the Hills

by Lennie Rizzo

We are launching this blog series, “Heart of the Matter,” by reprinting excerpts from the book “A Voice in the Hills,” lived and written with so much heart by Lennie Rizzo. Thanks to permission from Lennie, this will be only the first of several excerpts.

Because of you

We will speak today of some special case results and the tremendous outpouring of support that helped us at Foothills Humane Society to achieve these results.

First of all, I wish to thank the Tryon Daily Bulletin for allowing us to tell our stories. Because of you many business and people have opened their hearts and wallets to make things possible.

Case #1 is Cassie…born with a genetic defect (from inbreeding); she was dragging her whole back end around because nothing from the hips backward was working. Through it all she kept a pleasant disposition, as if to say, “this is what life has dealt me and I’m going to make the best of it.” Look at her now. New knees, believe it or not, and now she’s up and moving about. Some have personally taken on this case through our urgent care fund. Thank you, because of you this was possible.

Case #2 is Gizmo. I’ve often been asked about him, well here goes. He is with a new family and the report is he’s getting around without any signs of injury whatsoever. He’s frisky and playful and giving out as much love as he receives. The owners report to me that he wasn’t lying when he said, “I promise I won’t be any trouble.” Thanks to Landrum Veterinary Clinic this was possible. Because of you another on “our kids” is out there spreading joy. (Be patient Cloverfield and Bonnie Brae your turn will come.)

Case #3 is Savannah. Severe shoulder damage and her left front leg had to be removed. She also told the truth, you can’t beat her in a race. If you can look at her as I do and see nothing missing, I promise you your rewards will be great if you made a home for her. I wish to reiterate my thanks to the Tryon and Trackside Auction houses, because of you stories like Savannah’s are possible.

Case #4 Let us not forget Banjo from our “Slipping through the cracks” article. He is such a sweet, sweet boy and truly an easy keeper. So many different people were involved in making him whole.

Again, extra thanks to Virginia one of our foster care folks who have opened up her heart and home to see that Banjo remains happy and healthy. Surely there is someone out there who needs a loyal friend such as he, and perhaps I can then say, Because of you Banjo now has a forever home. Finally, a report on our hero soldier and his mom’s animal’s from a “Debt That Must be Paid.”

Jinx, Snickers, Harry Potter and Smokey (the four cats) have all been adopted. Viper, the 14-year-old collie mix is learning that there is more love and care for him in this world.  He’s eating his food and happily going for walks, which he truly loves. He’s even eating treats from the palm of my hand. Make no mistake though, this is not about me. The whole staff has been working patiently and lovingly to bring him around. I have faith that the right person will come along and we can send word to these people that will bring a smile to their hearts midst all their troubles. Because of all of you, this is happening..As always, the “kids” and I thank you for listening.