Penny from the Side of the Road: A Rescue Story

Penny the Dachshund Mix: A Rescue Story of Resilience and Love

On the day before Thanksgiving, while driving home, I saw a heartbreaking sight: a scrawny dog attempting to eat a dead animal on the roadside. Her emaciated state brought tears to my eyes. As I approached to help, she tried to flee but only made it a short distance before collapsing. I gently sat beside her, speaking softly. With a hesitant wag, she crawled closer, and I scooped her into my car, vowing to help.

Penny, as I named her, was safe at my home, but the vet wouldn’t be available until Saturday. Undeterred, I took on the role of her foster parent. Every two hours, even throughout the night, I fed her tiny portions of high-quality dog food. Despite her condition, a spark of sweetness shone through in her beautiful face. By morning, she was stronger and stayed close by my side, a constant shadow.

A Diagnosis and a Lifelong Commitment


The vet visit brought both good and bad news. Bloodwork revealed anemia, easily treatable with iron supplements. Thankfully, she tested negative for heartworm and intestinal parasites. However, the worst news was a spinal injury that would likely cause permanent bladder and bowel incontinence. Despite this challenge, my heart knew Penny deserved a loving forever home. I committed to physical therapy exercises to help her regain strength.

Her latest picture while at the vet today.

From Fragile to Feisty

Weekly updates showcased Penny’s remarkable progress. Walking improved, with weakness persisting in her back legs. Her bladder control showed gradual improvement, accidents mostly occurring during sleep. Her playful spirit emerged, allowing for short bursts of play with my other rescued dogs – Dyson, Eureka, Yoda, and Obie. She even enjoyed “swimming” in my bathtub, a fun way to exercise. Twice-daily physical therapy complemented her recovery. With growing strength, vaccinations were on the horizon.

A New Chapter Begins

Our trips to the vet brought more good news. Penny gained weight, exceeding expectations! Her vaccinations were administered, and she happily napped them off. Playtime with her furry siblings increased to five minutes before needing a break. Vet recommendations included delaying spaying and teeth cleaning until her progress plateaued. As a team, we’d reassess her condition and consider surgical options for the spinal injury if needed.

Homeward Bound, Happy Ever After

The final update brought a wave of relief. Penny received a clean bill of health, allowing her to be spayed. While the bladder and bowel issues were permanent, we adapted with puppy pads and waterproof covers. Penny’s preference for a pillow over a dog bed led to a comfortable setup with a waterproof case and puppy pad. This sweet, resilient dog is here to stay!


Thank you to everyone who offered encouragement and support during this journey. Your kindness helped Penny and me navigate these first crucial weeks.

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