One thing we hate more than anything is hearing stories of animal cruelty. But on the flip-side, we love hearing stories about animals who have been rescued out of terrible situations and given a second chance at life.
The perfect example of one such story is Ellie Mae.
Ellie Mae was so neglected when she was brought to the Nebraska Humane Society it was almost impossible for them to even discern what kind of animal she was. She was a mess of tangled, matted hair, and was unrecognizable.
Ellie Mae was in desperate need of some serious love and attention, and that’s exactly what the kind-hearted people at Nebraska Humane gave her.
Scroll down to read Ellie Mae’s incredible story.
The Nebraska Humane Society shared Ellie Mae’s story on their Twitter page.
Pam Wiese, a representative for NHS, explained what happened with Ellie Mae.
“The hardest part in helping Ellie Mae. She was so drastically matted that we had to put her under to shave her down. The drugs to do that are based on an animal’s weight, and we really couldn’t tell what she actually weighed… so our veterinary technician who made the estimate needed to be very careful. Because the matting was so severe, we had to shave very close to the skin. All three people working on Ellie were using blades normally used to prepare a surgical site. They are very sharp. So we had to be extremely careful to cut through the dense matting but not cut her. The process took just over an hour for three people!”
“We were dumbfounded at her condition when she came in. So were those who found her in the home after her owner had died. They had no idea she had a dog. They put Ellie in a storage tote to transport her to the Nebraska Humane Society because she couldn’t walk,” Wiese explained.
“Our staff didn’t know what she was, or that she was even a living animal until her head moved. She was very uncomfortable. We zipped her into our medical area, figured out what anesthesia was safe and then looked for her face so we could incubate her for her clean up.”
“After her clean up, we were amazed that she didn’t have more health issues. The hard shell of hair apparently protected her skin from infections and parasites. We’ve seen cases where the hair gets so tight it actually strangles the limbs and naturally “amputates” them. In those instances, necrosis and sepsis are very real concerns. In this case, after removing 9 pounds of hair from her 11-pound body, she was surprisingly healthy. She had good weight and a bit of arthritis and muscle atrophying, needed a dental, but she was up and moving the next morning. She is also the sweetest dog. She doesn’t have any issues with people or other easy-going dogs she meets. She’s extraordinarily resilient! And she’s very cute!”
“NHS is an open-entry shelter that serves the Omaha Nebraska metro area. We take in around 25,000 animals a year (including strays, some of which go back home, and wildlife which goes to a rehab facility that specializes in wildlife.) We see matted dogs just about every day, however, Ellie Mae is the most drastic case of matting we’ve ever seen. We have had other cases that create more serious health issues for animals, but this matting and toenail situation was just extraordinary.”
“We are so sorry this little peanut had to go through such an ordeal, which was likely for an extended period of time. But we are so happy we were here for her and able to give her a second chance! That’s why we do what we do!”