Nadia’s Adoption Story
As I mentioned in my first blog post: My Rescue + Volunteer Story, I have three precious dogs that I adopted. I could literally talk about my dogs all day. With that being said, I have decided to make a separate post about each dog. Otherwise, you would be here for an hour reading all their stories at once! So here’s Nadia’s story. Check back for Bambi and Haylee’s stories too.
A Dog on Death’s Door
Nadia was originally from the Dekalb County Animal Shelter. I don’t know her full background, but as a puppy (around 6 months old) she came in on death’s door. She had open wounds and punctures all over her body that were consistent with a dog attack. Thankfully Society of Humane Friends of Georgia stepped in to help save her life. Here is a link to their initial Facebook post on Nadia. Nadia had a dangerously high fever along with her left leg being crushed. Her blood pressure was low and she was very anemic. Clearly, she was in very critical condition.
She was taken to the University of Georgia’s Veterinary department to get stabilized and get a blood transfusion before going into surgery. Initially they thought that her left leg had to be amputated.
Thankfully, her leg was salvageable, so no amputation was necessary. However, the severe fracture in her left leg involved vital muscle used for walking. Nadia went through three surgeries in a span of six days. She had pins placed in both of her front legs along with deep cleaning of the wounds to rid of infection.
Against All Odds
Thankfully, Nadia pulled through all of that medical trauma. She went to one of the other foster’s house as she recovered. Once she physically healed up and we had an open foster spot open up, the rescue reached out to see if we’d be willing to take in Nadia. Although she turned the corner physically, socially and mentally she lacked any sort of confidence or “normal-ness” for a dog.
So when she was about 10 months old, we took Nadia in to our home. I remember her medical foster mom saying, you could literally do anything to this dog and she wouldn’t hurt you because she is so shut down. When we got Nadia, she always darted to the back of the crate or hid under the table. She had no clue how to properly walk on a leash or up stairs. She also did not want anything to do with people, so that made it very challenging. Through all of this though, she was never mean. She was just absolutely petrified.
We ended up having to use a retractable leash (which I don’t like at all, but in this case it worked for her) to clip her under the table and let her run outside (far from us) then run back inside. We had to carry her upstairs. I honestly can’t even remember where she slept, but at first I think she just slept on the floor in one of our rooms.
Nadia started to come around very slowly in her own way. When my sister and I went out of town one weekend, we took her to another foster’s house to care for her. While she was there, she noticed that Nadia perked up with another dog around. So that’s when we took in a second foster (Lila) to help her. Nadia grew drastically just from playing monkey-see, monkey-do. Unfortunately, that’s also when Nadia learned about a door bell and barking (hah)!!!
She finally started to wag her tail, she would jump up on the couch or bed, she would awkwardly seek attention, and she really started to be a dog in her own quirky way.
Welcome Home, Nadia
I can’t even remember if we took Nadia to adoption events because she was so shy around new people. In Spring of 2015, we decided to foster fail and adopt Nadia. We thought that putting her into a new environment might cause her to backtrack with all her progress. She finally was getting comfortable and trusting us. We knew her quirks and understood her, so it really just made sense to keep her.
Never in my life did I think I’d adopt a german shepherd mix as my first personal dog! Yet, here she is 6 years later only being partially feral at times! She actually cuddles, she is obsessed with food (and almost trips me in the kitchen following me around), she doesn’t have accidents, she doesn’t always need to hide, and plays like a lunatic.
If you look at Nadia, you can see her elbows and legs have scars from her injuries. She also sometimes stands with her elbows bent out. However, it doesn’t seem to bother her or slow her down when she’s playing. I do have her on a joint supplement just since she’s getting older.
A Thriving, Quirky Dog
I must say, she is my annoying child, but I love her to pieces. She helped me become a better and more patient foster mom. She’s been amazing with every animal we have brought in the house even if they were mean, and I love that about her. She has no spatial awareness or a read on other dogs’ behavior, so I’m always having to help her with that.
It’s just insane to see her progress just from looking at the pictures to her being alive and well now. We will never truly know what she went through prior to being rescued. Additionally, it’s crazy to think about how much she has come out of her shell over time. She’s still a little odd (we call her Mushy Brain), but she’s happy and that’s what matters!
Support Dogs Like Nadia
Unfortunately there are many sad stories like Nadia’s and not all of them have happy endings. I’m so grateful for groups like Society of Humane Friends that did everything they could to help Nadia. In fact, they spent about $10,000 on her medical care. Obviously, rescues rely on donations. If you’d like to contribute to SOHF to help them continue their mission of saving animals in need, you can do so by visiting this link.
Thanks for reading about Nadia!