Walter Zmijewski saved the life of a starved and abused dog when he found her abandoned in a park on Monday July 30. Thanks to Walter's kindness and the young dog's strong will to live, in just two days, the Labrador Retriever Pit Bull mix nicknamed 'Miracle', has been making a miraculous recovery.
Walter was out walking his dog when he saw Miracle chained “rather aggressively” to a fence near Edgewater Park in Cleveland, Ohio. The dog was severely emaciated, and had obviously been left for dead. Walter told Fox8 News that the dog looked almost "as if [the dog] was not supposed to be breathing much longer."
She had a belt noosed around her neck and attached to the fence's rails in such a way she could not stand up. Walter called 911 and removed the belt around her neck. He stayed by her side until the Dog Warden arrived. During the time he waited, Walter thought the dog may die. "But I told my little dog, Bella Mia, we weren’t gonna let her go by herself," described Walter.
The 2-year-old dog was rushed to emergency care, where Dr. Bob Litovitz, a veterinarian at Gateway Animal Clinic tended to her. He said, "She’s as close as you can get to starving to death and turned around. She has not had enough food for a long time. She is 22 pounds. She should be probably twice that." He said her starving body had digested her entire body mass, but fortunately not her internal organs.
Dr. Bob added, "It is a miracle that she’s turned around like she has." In fact, he said. she's gotten better faster than any dog he's seen in that shape before – gaining four pounds and perking up to the attention being given to her. "She’s a tough little girl," observed Dr. Bob. Even more remarkable considering Dr. Bob thinks she's been severely neglected for a very long time. "I don’t think anyone has ever been nice to this dog. She doesn’t know what it’s like to be petted."
The animal rescue, Friends of Cleveland Kennel, has stepped forward to help Miracle and has already found her a foster family. They believe he’s got a good chance of surviving. "What is amazing is we would see her little tail patter in the kennel cage. So we knew she had a strong will to live and be helped," said Becca Britton, the director of Friends of Cleveland Kennel.
Miracle's new foster mom, Vanessa Petrosky agrees and said that within one hour of meeting Miracle, the 2-year-old dog was constantly giving her kisses and her tail wouldn’t stop wagging.
The rescue said it will be at least two months before Miracle will be healthy enough to be adoptable. For more information on how you can adopt or help Miracle, click here.