A CORK rescue dog, saved from a cruel existence of mistreatment, gave a lifesaving blood donation to another dog, sparking a beautiful friendship between the two canines.
The extraordinary story of German Shepherd Wallace has been revealed by his owner, Michelle Quinn, who opened her home to the mistreated dog after spotting it on the Facebook page of the Cork Dog Action Welfare Group.
Michelle and her husband John adopted Wallace after their daughter Meghan suggested they get another pet.
“I had a German Shepherd eight years previously and he died. I took a long time to get over that and I didn’t think I was ready for another dog,” Michelle told The Echo.
“Meghan saw Wallace, then called Ollie, on the Cork Dog Action Welfare Group Facebook page and told me that there was a German Shepherd that looked very like my old dog.
“She contacted the organisation and then they rang me to see if I was interested in rescuing a dog. I was a good match as all my kids are grown up. I used to train dogs before and I was brought up with German Shepherds. I know they have a great nature, it is what people do to them that turns them.”
Before Wallace was sent to live with Michelle, the welfare group gave her an outline of the torment the young German Shepherd had been through.
“He was badly abused,” Michelle said.
“He was left outside, tied up on concrete for 11 months, physically beaten. When we got him he was underweight and bald from dermatitis caused by sleeping on hard concrete.
“He was a bag of nerves.”
Michelle and her husband John, who live in Donegal, were eventually able to take Wallace home.
“We took him to a groomer and got him cleaned up and looking lovely and we looked after him. He lives inside the house now.”
Michelle said Wallace is the most amazing dog and a very loving, kind and caring pet.
“It took a long time to come around and he is still not fully there, he still has trust issues. Noises scare him and there can be trust issues when we call him, but only small things.”
Michelle, who has had Wallace since last September, said the German Shepherd weighed just 12kg when they first got him.
Long after Wallace had settled in with the Quinns, Meghan told her parents about a family she knew who had a King Charles dog in need of a blood transfusion.
“I had been a nurse all my life and I never knew dogs could give blood,” Michelle said.
“I found out the dog had to be 20kg to give blood. I took Wallace to the vet and put him on the scales and he was 32kg.”
Michelle said the other family were devastated at the thought of losing their dog, Princey.
“The vet kept their dog overnight and told them not to hold much hope. The family were distraught.”
The process for a blood transfusion is to shave the dog’s neck and take the blood from the jugular.
“The vet asked if it was okay to muzzle Wallace if needed, in order to take the blood from his neck. I said of course, but when the vet took the blood he said he didn’t need to muzzle Wallace, he just laid down and trusted the vet.”
After the blood donation, Princey perked up, straight away he had pink ears and a pink nose and soon he was back eating, drinking and in great health.
“The little King Charles made a full recovery.”
After the donation, the vet asked could he put Wallace on the donor list and Michelle said he could.
Now, Wallace and Princey are best friends and often go for walks on the beach together.
“Wallace normally barks at other dogs but loves Princey, there is a real connection,” Michelle said. “It is a lovely friendship.”