At nine weeks old, Mistletoe should have been scampering around, chewing toys and chasing shadows. But instead she was in constant pain.
You might recognise the precious staffy-cross puppy as the face of a recent RSPCA South Australia fundraising appeal. Mistletoe had endured suffering at the hands of a neglectful owner and required complex surgery and months of rehabilitation if she were ever going to walk without pain again.
When RSPCA South Australia rescued Mistletoe back in October 2017, she was deprived of the care she so desperately needed and faced a lifetime of discomfort.
Over a year later, we’re thrilled to say that this sweet little girl is fully healed and loving her active life – and it’s all thanks to the generosity and kindness of our wonderful supporters.
Multiple surgeries to help Mistletoe walk again
When a concerned neighbour spotted Mistletoe limping and reported her case, she had a dislocated elbow and leg so badly broken that she couldn’t put any weight on her front paw.
Underweight and dehydrated, Mistletoe had not only been denied veterinarian help, but she’d been left outside without food and water.
The beautiful puppy required thousands of dollars’ worth of complex surgery to bring her back to good health.
Luckily for Mistletoe, the extreme generosity of kind-hearted South Australians meant we were able to raise enough money to fund her rehabilitation. Mistletoe quickly underwent the major surgery she needed.
Before her rescue, all Mistletoe had known was pain and neglect. Little did she know how much love was waiting for her in her new life.
A lifetime of love after Mistletoe becomes part of the family in her foster home
An experienced foster carer and RSPCA staff member, Jacky has nursed hundreds of animals back to health. But after so many months with Mistletoe, she simply couldn’t imagine life without her and officially adopted the playful staffy-cross after a year of fostering!
“When I first met Mistletoe, I was walking down the corridor at work and heard this screaming coming from one of the recovery rooms,” Jacky recalls.
“Inside was Mistletoe. She was so distressed and upset being alone that I knew I had to take her home where she would always have someone with her.”
An unbreakable bond forms with one-eyed fellow rescue pup
When first welcomed into Jacky’s home, Mistletoe instantly grew attached to Axel, another RSPCA South Australia rescue dog.
“Mistletoe and Axel got along so well that we knew we had to adopt her permanently – it would have been unfair to separate them,” Jacky says.
Having both been given second chances at a loving life, the affectionate canines couldn’t be better company for each other.
Jacky tells us that living together is beneficial for both Mistletoe and Axel, and now neither of them will have to experience being lonely and neglected ever again.
Endless playing and a big thank you with all four paws
Mistletoe has transformed from a distressed, limping little pup into an active and playful girl, and it’s all thanks to the help of our generous supporters.
“Having fostered Mistletoe, we went through the pain with her from the very beginning,” says Jacky.
“It’s such a relief to have made it through her recovery – and now she does a sprint at least once every day where she runs like a maniac!”
We know that Mistletoe couldn’t have found a more perfect home or be happier, and it’s all thanks to those who made her transformation possible with their generous donations.
From the bottom of our hearts, we’re so grateful to all our supporters who made Mistletoe’s new life with Jacky and Axel a reality. If you’d like to continue helping animals just like Mistletoe, head over here to donate.