The good, the bad and the ugly

Published 10:00 am Friday, December 16, 2022

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Last week, I had just left Landrum Vet where I paid the bill for a 5-year-old Shepherd. A rescuer I work with deals with indigent people, and over the years together we have helped many families and their pets. This dog’s bill was nearly $500 and it has had all its shots and has been fixed. Everything is good to go, it was money well spent.


On August 11, Animal Control went into a pit bull breeding facility, answering a call from a concerned neighbor. They seized a litter of four surviving pups from a garbage heap. The pups were cold and covered with manure and struggling to survive. One female died and the rest had health issues, including whiplash and a fractured skull, and one pup had a severed hind leg above the ankle with a left front foot that had two severed toes with painful bone fragments embedded in her foot. The puppies were approximately two weeks old.


Two separate fosters, Jean, who initially took them in, and Susan teamed up to give these pups all the special care needed, which took time, love, and much money out of their own pockets. I could write a book on all it takes to successfully do this work. I have dealt with Susan often and I consider these people as angels from God.


On November 4, Marshall, one of the pups, was adopted, and on November 10 his brother Barney followed suit. Evelyn, the female with all the leg issues, remained with Susan, and I was called to help with any surgeries needed, which I instantly approved.

I met Evelyn at Bonnie Brae Veterinary Hospital, and at this time she was 4 months old.  I was blown away, not only by her beauty, but also by her sweet disposition.  


I learned from Jean’s email that the two brothers also were sweet and loving. We all agree that the forgiving nature of these animals after all they’ve been through never ceases to amaze us.


Evelyn will need a special home and I will keep my promise to help with whatever she needs to have done. 


As I was leaving Bonnie Brae, in comes a Foothills Humane Society volunteer carrying a young white Shepherd named Adam, who was all skin and bones. I was later called and asked if I could help Adam, who it seems has Parvo. I answered to everyone that I didn’t touch him and okayed my assistance. The case is pending.


I’ve explained the good and the bad, and believe me, it gets uglier. Subsequent raids from Animal Control finally removed all the dogs from the premises of the pit bull breeding facility. The fosters are now raising one surviving pup from a litter of eight. Necropsies revealed that the remaining seven died of starvation.


Satan is very strong in our midst. Dear God, please send us as many angels as you can to help us in this battle.


Thanks for listening.



Leonard Rizzo is the founder of Lennie’s Kids, a nonprofit organization that helps sick and injured animals in the foothills, promotes animal welfare, and works to find homes for pets.