When Alex Darsey found a pitiful two month old pit bull cowering on a street corner in Brooklyn he couldn’t turn around and ignore him. Passers by told Alex that the puppy had been thrown out a car moments earlier, which clinched Alex’s new friendship with the scared, but loving dog.
Alex took the poor puppy to Brooklyn emergency vet clinic, VERG, where they found that Walter, as he is now called, was incredibly malnourished, dehydrated and suffering from a severe case of Mange. To make matters worse, according to the vets on call, it looked as if Walter’s previous owners had tried to combat the Mange by using a harmful chemical such as bleach or ammonia, literally burning what fur Walter had left, along with his skin.
Alex turned to his friends, co-workers at Brooklyn’s Southpaw music venue, for help. Now, Walter has a band of caretakers who are putting their energy and money together to save this unlucky puppy. Walter has been taken in to VERG where he is receiving multiple treatments to help him not only fight off the Mange, but multiple infections he’s gotten due to a severely weakened immune system.
“His body is like a sponge for bacteria and infection, and he is so weak that he cannot fight it on his own. That being said, Walter is fighting…his white blood cell count is high (which means his body is aggressively trying to fight off the infection), and his general condition has improved since he admitted 2 days ago,” writes Walter’s caretakers on the blog they’ve started for him to not only chronicle his progress, but to help bring in funds.
As someone who has taken in many wounded animals off the streets (and received generous help from the amazing veterinarians at VERG) I feel for this group of friends. While I’m incredibly upset over what Walter is going through, it’s so refreshing to hear about people who refuse to turn a blind eye on an animal in need. So many times, when I was rescuing cats in Brooklyn, people would inform me of an animal in need and I always wondered, why don’t you do something?
So often people think they can’t help because they don’t have the money, time, or know how to. I’m going to let you in on a little secret, no one does. I haven’t met a single person who has the funds, time, or energy to do what Walter’s caretakers are doing, but that shouldn’t mean you walk away if you’re ever presented with the same scenario.
As this story proves, anyone can help an animal. You don’t need to be a rescue veteran to do the right thing. In most cases, just getting an animal to the vet is the best step, even if you don’t have the money to pay for treatments. In the most dire of financial situations, I’ve yet to meet a vet who will refuse putting an animal in severe pain down without payment.
Luckily for Walter, his new caretakers don’t want finances to be a reason to euthanize this fighter, so they’re pooling together their resources. I urge you to help Walter in any way you can. Hold a bake sale to raise funds, scrape a little off your tax return to send over, or, as my mom is, unknowingly, doing, donate to Walter in lieu of birthday gifts.
As if you needed more reasons to choke up about little Walter, here’s an amazing video of the little man noshing on some jerky treats. A good appetite is always a pawesome sign!