In July of 2020, a family was driving in North Carolina when they came across a puppy on the side of the road.
The little black lab mix was in rough shape. Acting fast, they scooped her up and took her to the nearest shelter.
While the family was well meaning, they didn’t realize this shelter was full and couldn’t take any more animals.
This meant this poor puppy was in danger of being euthanized, but the shelter workers couldn’t bear to let that happen.
Keep reading to discover how this sick puppy in desperate need of help dodged a tragic fate.
Making the Call
The shelter eventually called Hope Animal Rescue, a non-profit, volunteer-run organization dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating, and rehoming dogs across North Carolina.
They got ahold of their medical director, Kate Matthews, and asked if she could help this puppy that they had named Amelia Earhart.
Kate was more than ready to drop everything to help.
“They couldn’t provide any medical care for what Amelia needed and didn’t even know what was wrong with her. They just knew she was in terrible shape,” Kate recalled.
The shelter wanted to help this puppy, they just didn’t have the funding or resources.
“So they gave Hope Animal Rescue a call saying, ‘We have this puppy here who’s in awful shape, we can’t handle her, she will be euthanized if she’s not out by the end of the day.’”
Kate knew what she had to do, so she sprung into action!
Fighting For Her Life
“So I get that call, I finish work, and I jump in my car and pick up Amelia within the hour,” Kate said. “I picked up Amelia and she’s just limp.”
Kate called a veterinarian that partners with the rescue and was luckily able to fit Amelia in for an emergency visit.
The help came just in time. Amelia was anemic, needed a blood transfusion, and was covered in fleas and ticks.
After 48 hours, the vet released Amelia so that Kate could take her home.
But this poor puppy wasn’t safe yet. She was still dangerously underweight and in need of serious care.
Luckily, neither Kate nor Amelia were ready to give up the fight.
Can’t Hold Her Back
“Once we brought her home, we were able to get a closer look at her and she was just skin and bones. It was so sad to see how thin and small this puppy was,” Kate said.
Despite knowing that the recovery could be hard and long, she was more than ready to do anything and everything to help Amelia.
“It was a battle of keeping an eye on her and making sure she was getting the calories and the exercise and the behavioral help she needs,” Kate said.
As Amelia slowly grew stronger and healthier, Kate realized that nothing could hold this pup back.
The puppy showed no signs of aggression or fear towards humans. “She knew she was in good hands because she was incredibly cuddly,” Kate recalled.
And once her energy returned, she quickly turned into a playful and mischievous housemate.
“Her personality was just she would do this sort of classic ‘I can hear you but I’m not listening’ situation. She would just kind of wander around,” Kate laughed. “We were able to remedy that with some treats and then she’d just be glued to your side.”
Now that Amelia Earhart had healed, it was time for her to find her wings and fly to her forever home.
One Way Ticket to Home
As it turned out, Amelia didn’t have to travel far. She was adopted by a local couple just a few blocks away from Kate!
“They have an older black lab themselves, so the two black labs together are very cute,” Kate said.
She also noted that the adoption was “one of those very karmic things.”
Earlier that year, the same couple had found a dog on the side of the road. Unable to rehabilitate the puppy themselves at that time, they’d taken it to Hope Animal Rescue.
Then, months later, they were able to adopt a puppy with a similar journey.
“So it was sort of, they helped this dog find its way to a rescue and now they’re able to adopt Amelia Earhart into their homes, so it was really great,” Kate said. “She bounced back and she’s a happy, healthy black lab now.”
Amelia adores her new forever family and is excited to have a furry sibling to learn from and wrestle with for the rest of her days.