Recently, an unwanted dog that was about to be euthanized at a shelter after being hit by a car, was rescued by a volunteer from the Little Shelter in Huntington, New York. The dog, Foxy, was then rehabilitated at the shelter and is now a pet hero after saving her new owner's life.
Foxy and owner, Joan Maguire (seated), pictured with representatives from Fort Dodge Animal Health and Little Shelter.
"Foxy, who is a seven-year-old pit bull mix, is a true testament to the fact that pit bulls are not bad dogs," says Jodi Record, office manager of the Little Shelter. "Foxy was rescued by a volunteer who had seen her at a kill- shelter. She was very sweet, but had been hit by a car and suffered a broken leg. She was going to be euthanized because the town's finances did not allow for the extensive surgery that Foxy would need."
After three surgeries that led to finally putting a steel plate in her leg, Foxy stayed at the Little Shelter for a year and three months. They didn’t think she would ever be adopted, due to her appearance as an older dog, her need for daily supplements for her leg and because she is part pit bull. But, finally in late 2002, Foxy's angel arrived at the Little Shelter in the form of Joan Maguire. It was a perfect match and Foxy was taken to her new home. Foxy then repaid the favor 1,000 times over.
On January 17th, a freezing winter day, Maguire, who is 82 years old, took Foxy for a walk. Maguire's front steps were icy. She slipped and fell to the ground and lay there, unable to move. Maguire desperately tried to get attention using her flashlight, but had no luck. But the dog, sensing Maguire's distress, immediately helped. Foxy laid on top of Maguire, using body heat to keep her warm, and barked constantly for an exhausting hour and a half to get help for her master. The next-door neighbors were going to bed but heard Foxy's barking and decided to investigate. They found Maguire on the ground with her loyal friend at her side. Maguire was taken to the hospital for surgery for a broken hip from the fall. If not for Foxy's instincts, Maguire would not have survived the cold. Foxy has proven the old saying that a rescued pet never forgets the one who saves its life.
On June 10, 2003, Foxy received the ProHeart® Hero Award from Fort Dodge Animal Health for her heroic act of loyalty and dedication. The award was presented to Foxy at Little Shelter by Dieter Keylon, Northeast Regional Manager for Fort Dodge Animal Health.
As a recipient of the ProHeart Hero Award, Foxy will receive a Certificate of Recognition, a ProHeart Hero Medallion, a cash donation of $1,500 and complimentary veterinary care up to $750 for one year.
Fort Dodge Animal Health established the ProHeart® Hero Award program to recognize and honor canine companions that demonstrate heroism through acts of courage. Foxy will be the fourth canine hero to receive the ProHeart® Hero Award. The first Award was presented to the New York Police Department Canine Unit in January 2002 for their work at the World Trade Center disaster site. In June 2002, Kaiser, a male German shepherd received the Award for saving his family from a fire that nearly destroyed their home. And, in July 2002, Bullet, a male Golden retriever received the ProHeart® Hero Award for helping save his family’s baby from near death by alerting the parents that the baby had stopped breathing.