There is a lot of unexplained depravity in the world that for most people, is incomprehensible. This wickedness often finds its way to those most innocent and vulnerable. Dogs are an easy target for the nefarious. Dogs however, have an unbelievable strength; a staggering resilience. They possess an innate ability to overcome even the biggest of obstacles, and the most tragic of circumstances. They are far more forgiving than most humans are capable of being. And when it comes right down to it, they simply want what the rest of the world strives for daily - a loving home and family to call their own.
This beautiful face belongs to Bodhi. A boy as resilient as they come; he has seen evil up close and personal. When he was just a young puppy, he was found by New York City Police in the trunk of a car with both of his front legs badly broken. Due to the severity of his injuries, Bodhi lost his front, right leg.
All things considered Bodhi has been fortunate, his life spared and saved by a rescue in New York City. He landed in a wonderful foster home whose focus is on dogs with special needs. They saw him through his recovery until he was healthy enough to find his forever home. Today he is a happy boy who’s working on living his best life, with a forever family all his own.
Bodhi is approximately four and a half years old now. He is an active and healthy boy who continues with physical therapy to keep his three remaining legs strong. Despite the underwater treadmill, pool and cold-laser therapy however, the weight of his upper body has become too much for his front leg to bear. As a result, it has begun to bow beneath the weight.
Joey’s P.A.W. - a non-profit organization - thankfully stepped in to help Bodhi’s family with the cost of a prosthetic and a brace to help support his remaining front leg. Through the power of social media, Joey’s P.A.W. raised enough money within 24 hours to cover the full $1500 expense for Bodhi’s needs.
Roughly around the time when Bodhi was first rescued, another dog named Joey was also fighting for his life. A Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, this cutie was a mere 6 weeks old when he had both of his back legs intentionally severed. The details of how or exactly what led to those events are unknown by his family. Thankfully however, he ended up in the care of the very same rescue that saved Bodhi’s life as well. And on October 26th, 2016, Joey was officially adopted by his new mom and dad - Tanya and Charlie.
When Tanya and Charlie adopted Joey he already had a prosthetic to help with his transition. It was on the drive home from picking him up in New York City that they looked at each other with this special baby between them and decided right then and there that they needed to do something to help save other dogs like him. And so Joey’s P.A.W. was born.
Joey’s P.A.W. is a non-profit organization that raises the funding needed to help individual dogs receive the prosthetics, braces and/or wheelchairs they require to give them an optimized quality of life. While they take requests from anyone in need, their mission is to work directly with rescues and shelters to give special needs dogs the very best chance at finding a forever home. Having been in operation for two and a half years now, Joey’s P.A.W. has helped a total of 566 animals; mostly dogs but their dedication doesn’t end there. They’ve also helped provide prosthetics for a couple of cats, three goats and a guinea pig!
Dogs with special needs are typically the hardest to find homes for and are often the longest stays in rescue and shelters. It is certainly understandable. Special needs dogs may require a much bigger time and financial commitment than their healthier counterparts. This kind of weighted burden often deters people from giving special needs animals a chance. Joey’s P.A.W. works to alleviate the pressure off the rescues and shelters they work with which has proven to exponentially grow the chances of adoption for those dogs. Not to mention, when they help individual families as well, it provides a peace of mind to someone who might otherwise be forced to give up their animals or worse, choose euthanasia for healthy a dog because the expense is just too great.
Joey’s P.A.W. is an organization that grew into a commanding presence because of one small and vulnerable puppy who opened the eyes of his humans to a world full of cruelty. Today Tanya and Charlie have six special needs dogs in their home. What they’re doing is nothing short of inspirational. But Bodhi and Joey are the real heroes. The world around them could learn a thing or two about perseverance, strength and survival. But the truth is, the reason a dog finds itself in need of a prosthetic or a wheelchair can come from any number of factors - neglect, abuse, an accident, an illness…. Whatever the reason, Joey’s P.A.W. works to bring peace to those families and rescue dogs in need.
Tanya and Charlie want the world to know that a special needs dog is just a dog with a little extra hardware. If they can help people look past this to just see the dog, they’ve already succeeded in their mission.
In January the Furr-bulous team donated $400 to Joey’s P.A.W. to help Bodhi receive the prosthetic he needs. If you’d like to help Joey’s P.A.W. in their mission to help save more dogs like Bodhi and Joey, please consider sending in a donation to www.paypal.me/JoeysPAW.