One afternoon in June of last year, a woman who was strolling the streets of Tampa in Florida gazed upon something strange from one of the houses in the neighborhood. By the window was a skinny and awfully frail poodle. Concerned, the lady went back home and dialed animal control.

“From across the street, she was able to tell that he was all skeleton,” said Senior Paws Sanctuary Founder Debbie Goldsberry.


Animal control officers went to the location immediately after gaining lawful access into the property. There, they found three famished dogs. Sadly, two of the dogs didn’t make it. They died shortly after the rescue while the one by the window barely made it.

The 9–year–old poodle, later called Beni, was brought to the local shelter. The staffers did all that they could to help Beni but he was in a real bad shape. Besides the obvious, Beni was diabetic, had a tumor on his front right foot, a painful skin infection, and almost didn’t have any fur.

Because of his state, he was listed in the kill list. But before anything happened, an email was sent out by the shelter talking about Beni. And the message made it to Goldberry’s inbox.

“He wouldn’t have made it if not for a rescue. We assembled our volunteers and arranged a transport so we could bring him to Fort Myers,” explained Goldsberry.

Beni was taken to an animal clinic directly but even the vet couldn’t tell whether he could make it. He has been starved for so long that he no longer knows what food is and how it is to eat. And even if he swallowed the food that they’d put inside his mouth, his body failed to process it.

Yet somehow, Beni survived. He went home with Goldsberry and lived with 26 other dogs in a sanctuary she runs and manages near her home.

Goldsberry closely monitored Beni’s health. With extreme caution, they started to give him food and water. “Most diabetics require plenty of water, but not Beni. He wanted nothing.”

Every passing day was a rough one. But eventually, Beni’s health improved. A shiny coat of black fur started to grow, he became confident, and his diabetes became stable. “Right now, he wags his tail nonstop.”

Photo Credits to Senior Paws Sanctuary

Since being rescued, Beni has been enjoying his second chance at life. Goldberry, on the other hand, swore to continue doing everything that she could to make sure that Beni’s tail keeps on wagging.



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