In East Tennessee, it’s not all that uncommon to see a loose hound running around. Priscilla’s days were probably filled with sun bathing, chasing squirrels, and eating scraps out of the garbage until one day she suffered an injury. Unfortunately, pets can’t tell us their story so we don’t know exactly what happened but it’s likely she was hit by a car. She wandered to a house where she had previously greeted some friendly humans and they took her to the Veterinary Emergency Department at the University of Tennessee.
Priscilla had sustained several serious injuries to the rear of her body and the Good Samaritan who found her couldn’t afford to cover the cost of treatment. She was transferred to our care and our vet staff sprang into action. Her hind leg needed to be amputated, and due to severe damage to her spine, we were uncertain if her remaining rear leg would regain mobility.
For several days she was carefully watched by our staff while she fought infection. Becoming more stable, she was moved to a foster home where she was more comfortable and we could continue to monitor her healing progress.
Knowing Priscilla would need a home that was experienced with her disability, we reached out to a wide swath of rescues that helped place dogs in need of wheelchairs. After more than a month with her foster mom, a rescue from eastern upstate New York answered. They had a place for Priscilla if we could get her there.
Unable to transport her ourselves, we once again reached out to our wide community of partners and supporters for help, and our call was answered. One of our largest transport partners, HALO, could take her from Knoxville to Buffalo, but that was only a portion of the trip. From there two separate volunteers helped with stretches to Syracuse and her destination, Cobleskill. Priscilla had all her necessities packed in her crate and was carried like Cleopatra from vehicle to vehicle to keep her comfortable.
When she finally arrived at her final destination, we all thought she would be exhausted from the trip, but no! She was so excited to get her very own Walkin’ Wheels. At first, she wasn’t sure how to prop herself up but with some assurance and coaxing, her trembling front legs found the strength to sustain her weight.
Still unsure about her new set up, she timidly took her first steps, but what really got her moving was being taken outside. Her fear faded and she reveled in her new found freedom. Priscilla now spends her days as her new mom’s shadow and has learned to climb the stairs with a little help from her friends. She enjoys spending time in her tower where she can see all that is happening below her.
Priscilla’s story, like so many others, wouldn’t have had this happy ending without our volunteers, donors, and supporters. The countless social media posts and shares helped find transport partners for the final stretch of her trip. The donors who have given to our foster program ensured we were ready to meet her needs while we waited. We are so thankful for the many messages of support and know only together can we continue to give pets like Priscilla a second chance.
To learn more about becoming a foster and other volunteer opportunities visit www.young-williams.org/get-involved/