Monday, July 1, 2013

Rescue tears ... of joy! The uplifting story of Sergeant Cuvo, wounded warrior German Shepherd Dog

Tears are a part of rescue, often tears of sorrow and pain as we witness millions of precious animals killed each year in the USA for the “crime” of being homeless.  Many are dumped by their humans, others are born and spend their entire life without ever having a place to call home, still others find themselves sheltered due to sad circumstances, like what happened to Sergeant Cuvo.  When his human was arrested, Sarge found himself stranded at the McMinn Regional Humane Society in Athens TN.  After repeated attempts to locate Sarge’s human for weeks after his release, the following pictures and plea were put forth Friday June 28 2013, by Barbara Brakebill,  Humane President and Shelter Coordinator, and her staff:

Sergeant Cuvo - German Shepherd Dog: An adoptable dog in Athens, TN         
Large • Adult • Male
Pet ID: D18 #27711 • Spayed/Neutered • House trained • Special Needs • Primary colors: Brown or Chocolate, Black • Coat length: Medium
Our information about Cuvo is as follows: He is about 8 years old and is a wounded warrior. He is military service trained in search & rescue, blind service, and detection of guns, drugs, and bombs. He lost his right eye to an attack and has some damage to his right ear and head. He seems nice and wants a good home.   McMinn Regional Humane Society, Athens, TN

That message was shared by Candyce and Linda with their many fellow rescue friends and of course this 4-legged veteran Sarge’s plight touched many hearts, most especially several very active German Shepherd rescues who sprung into action.  Michelle with Snow Capped Shepherd in Colorado stepped up to accept Sarge into her rescue, as she so often does for doggies in peril all across the USA.  Of course Athens TN is far from Littleton CO, so transport loomed as a major obstacle.

Enter the awesome network of Pilots and Paws truly “saving the lives of innocent animals” with their blessed work. Sarge’s plight touched several pilots and bottom line is Frank (Athens to St Louis), and Jim (St Louis to Kansas City) would provide the gift of air transport to make Sarge’s rescue a reality!  Other friends will foster Sarge along his journey  (including first night host Victor who said Cuvo “slept with the kids,” is “very calm and sweet” and is “awesome with the kids!”)  Finally a driven leg from KC to Littleton CO by Colorado Animal Rescue Express this upcoming Wednesday will allow Sergeant Cuvo to celebrate Independence Day 2013 safe in rescue, fitting for this wounded warrior.

Rescue and transport arrangements had gelled quickly in just hours from Barbara’s initial plea, yet much work remained back in Athens TN with precious little time available.  Sarge was still in the shelter, needing basic shots and examination and a mandated-by-law Health Certificate to travel.  Wife Val contacted awesome vet Dr Todd, who literally on a moment’s notice kindly opened his clinic on an off day just for Sarge.  Barbara rushed to the shelter early to spring this boy for his exam, and Sarge’s vet examination indeed brought good news: Heartworm negative, overall good health, and so the granting of his Health Certificate and the resultant freedom to travel, plus some loving from the Doc!  And back at the shelter, Sarge received a warm hug goodbye from his shelter friend.

Next, off to the airport to meet his flight.  While waiting, sweet Sarge first made friends with a passing pilot and received a bone treat and petting, then coaxed Barbara into providing a couple treats, then a couple more, perhaps even a few more!  Barbara had not been to the airport since the recent death of her friend, the gentleman who had run the airport for many years and was responsible for the airport upgrades that allowed this day to occur, and so it was an extra emotional experience for her. 

Sarge chilled in the tree-shaded grass on a beautiful morning, enjoying affection, yet was quite ready to go when Frank and his very nice co-pilot flew in.  Likely Sargeant Cuvo has flown before as he confidently headed for the plane, as if he had all of this planned.  Once doggie and humans were settled in, dog loving pilot Frank fired up his beautiful red-and-white amphibious airplane, taxied the runway and soon they were off into the clouds, “PAWS IN THE AIR!” as Sarge moved on to the next chapter of his life, thanks to so many wonderful people – some mentioned, no doubt many others who should have been – all folks that cared about this senior wounded warrior Sergeant Cuvo, and worked hard to make his rescue a reality.

Meanwhile back on the ground Humane President Barbara quietly cried, thinking both of her recently departed friend and the beautiful rescue of this handsome warrior, Sargeant Cuvo.  Some bittersweet tears certainly, yet perhaps many were tears of joy, for as Barbara said, Sergeant Cuvo’s rescue is a great example of why we all do what we do, each helping all of the “Sarges” live on through our individual roles in the rescue community.  Yeah Sargeant Cuvo and a thank you to all of your friends!

Pablo Bassim Jr.
Blind Dog Bed & Bone Rescue

1 comment:

  1. Thank you to everyone involved....Rescuers, Transporters, Dr. Todd, Barbara.....Everyone...This story is the kind of story that helps me sleep at night...

    Wendy Williams