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Missouri Couple Offers Sanctuary to Neighbors’ Forgotten Dog

Missouri Couple Offers Sanctuary to Neighbors’ Forgotten Dog


Written by Nancy Hatcherof Missouri

My husband and I were married about 15 years before we were blessed with a dog companion. Our neighbors had a beautiful black shepherd and malamute mix that was raised as an indoor pet until they had a baby. Fearing Princess would harm their new baby, they put her on a heavy metal chain outside on a concrete pad with a rickety and leaky doghouse that was too small for her. Their only contact with her was to drop a bowl of food and tell her to shut up. We watched a very social and beautiful dog descend fartherand farther into depression. We would try to pet her but every time we approached, she would start to shake and pee on herself. Thunderstorms would terrify her, especially with no place to be protected from the rain.

Princess was in good physical condition but emotionally devastated.

She Ran To Us for Help

One weekend they left town and Princess broke loose and came directly to our house. We had a fenced-in backyard where she would be safe and kept her for the three days they were gone. We never saw anyone come to feed, water or simply check on her for the entire three days.

We would let her in the house during the day and fixed a bed on the back porch for the night. She was so happy to be inside and to have protection outside.

When the couple returned, we asked if we could keep her since they didn’t trust her with the baby. After an agonizing 24 hours, we watched her, once again, descend into depression. They decided to let her go and warned us that she urinated in the house. The only time she urinated in the house was when she heard paper crunching. She quit when she realized we weren’t going to hit her.

No More Chains for Princess

The Hatchers with their dogs Bob (left) and Princess (right)

The first thing we did was to take the chain off and throw it away with a promise to Princess that she’d never feel a chain around her neck again.

As it turned out, Princess was extremely intellegent (sometimes a real challenge!) and had a great sense of humor. When she and my husband got down on the floor and played, half the time she was teasing him. She had the most beautiful laughing eyes. Phil would hold a doggie treat in his mouth (I know, yuk!) and Princess would smile with her eyes, look deep into Phil’s eyes and gently take the treat.

When our first grandson was born, the supposedly “dangerous” Princess would guard his bed when he slept and was a constant companion even when Devin would pull on her sensitive ears. Never once did she snap, bite, growl or harm him in any way. We could not have asked for a better guardian companion for Devin.

During her life with us she rescued a brindle boxer, Bob, and they became the best of friends. Princess lived a very long life and finally passed at the age of 20. She is missed terribly.

All our animal friends have been rescued and we’ve found them to make the best companions. We have never “owned” a pet, but we have shared our lives with many. They have given us so much we wonder sometimes who rescued who and if we are their pets.More photos here.

Brought to you by The Great Animal Rescue Chase

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Photo Credit: Jevernot |

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11:35PM PDT on Jul 2, 2014

animals are always lovingand faithful.

7:24AM PDT on Apr 23, 2014

In today's toss-away society, nothing is valued, just replaced. Thank God for those who still remember and value all life, and are rewarded without asking for recognition, just because it's the right thing to do.

2:51AM PDT on Apr 22, 2014

Such a happy many dogs live out their lives chained up ,no walks,no praise,no love ,isolated .What these ignorant heartless people call ''owning'' a pet is tantamount to being a callous prison wrong.

6:15AM PDT on Apr 16, 2014

Thank you, Nancy Hatcher & husband, for loving & caring for this precious dog and giving her the good life that she deserved. You are truly good people, and I wish there were more of you in this tired old world of ours. Bless you a thousand times over for rescuing Princess.

3:05PM PST on Feb 19, 2014

if only more people were like that !!

and fewer like the stupid neighbours...

7:25AM PST on Jan 21, 2014

God Bless you and your Husband for being such kind, caring and loving people to animals !!
And she lived to be 20 years+ old - amazing !

I have always found it to be true that a rescued animal is so loving and grateful to be be given a home, food , and shelter - and attention !

Last May I adopted a 3 month old mix breed from our towns' high kill animal control. She is so sweet and so eager to please. I am so glad I to have her as my BFF !!

8:58AM PDT on Oct 30, 2013

Goodness gracious me, wonderful story and Princess lived an exceptionally long life because of the love she finally received from these generous & loving people. God Bless them for their kindness. Just so uplifting for the spirit to read such a wonderful story. How can Princesses former owners love their dog and have it inside one day and in the next breath put a heavy chain on poor thing and tether her to a leaky, too small kennel? Those people didn't deserve a dog or a baby, I sincerely hope their baby got looked after a tad better than their throw away dog Princess. Thank you for the uplifting story of love and hope shared.
✰♥ *★*♥Love*★* ♥° ★love★ °♥*★ *love ♥*★* ♥✰
★*♥*☻*Love & Peace go with you always.*☻*♥*★
✰♥•★•* ♥°*♥✰•˚★*ღ♥•★✰★•♥ღ*˚★•✰♥*° ♥ *•★•♥✰
✰♥ღ♥Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ღ★ ♥ *☻ღ♥Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ♥ღ☻*♥ ★ღƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ♥ღ♥✰

3:31PM PDT on Oct 14, 2013

I know a dog like that. He lives two doors down from me. I am in the processes of making a report to authorities as they feel their dog is fine. He has a small yard to turn around in and is never allowed inside. They tell him to shut up. That's his only words. I speak to him through the fence, so he knows and responds to my voice. :-)

He is a puppy. A big puppy and would do better with someone who would let him inside and let him be a part of a family. He needs a couch with his owners, not outside left in a tiny yard, heat and cold - to bark and bark and bark.

I want his owners to give him up of their own volition. He will be safe in the shelter system here as we are NO KILL. He is a pure bred Labrador.

9:57AM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

No animal should be forgotten.

12:11PM PDT on Jul 21, 2013

You and Princess are indeed blessed with each other's love. That is so scarce in the world today. Peace to you.

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