Everyone needs a "Champ"ion
For the past 13 years, I have seen and rescued countless animals in my role as executive director of Little Traverse Bay Humane Society in Harbor Springs, Mich. Little Traverse Bay Humane Society is a donor-funded, nonprofit corporation that offers a temporary home to companion animals. As a no-kill shelter, our mission is to offer a warm shelter, veterinary services, and personal attention to all the animals in our care, as well as proactive methods to control pet overpopulation. Little Traverse Bay Humane Society is also committed to educating the public about the humane treatment of companion animals.
While many stories personally resonate with me over the years, Champ's story perfectly illustrates not only my commitment to our mission, but the commitment of everyone at the shelter. Champ was a nine-year-old German shepherd given up by the the only family he had ever known. Frankly, I'm glad he was surrendered because he spent his whole life tied to a chain. He was never allowed inside the house or taught any social skills.
When Champ arrived at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, he was covered with open sores from a skin infection and swollen ears from food allergies. His ears were also raw either from fly infestation or frostbite. I personally shaved his fur down to allow air to reach his sores and bathed him to start his healing process. We took him to the Pellston Veterinary Clinic immediately to have him treated and neutered. Unfortunately, Champ became extremely sick because his immune system was so suppressed by all of his conditions. But we didn't give up on him. We treated him with antibiotics, fluids and a nutritious diet. We all took care of Champ until he got well. In our minds, we did not have an option. And that is true for any animal who comes through our doors. Every animal is neutered, vaccinated, groomed, trained, exercised and loved unconditionally until a permanent, caring home can be found.
After two weeks with us, Champ had gained 13 pounds. His ears looked beautiful, his sores had all healed and his coat was growing back. Best of all, two weeks after he was surrendered, Champ found the happy ending he had been waiting for his whole life — a forever home. His new owner was thrilled to have found him and we were even more thrilled for Champ who was given a true second chance.
Champ's story is just one of many that occur daily at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society illustrating our commitment to every animal who walks through our doors. Our staff and board of directors are dedicated animal lovers who work tirelessly to improve the lives of our four-legged friends. Our priority is to care for the animals, like Champ, who need us the most. And we are committed to giving each of them our best effort and a safe haven that is filled with love until they find their forever homes.
To learn how you can help us help the animals who need us most, please visit www.ltbhs.com or call (231) 347-2396.