Champ captured my attention in a recent encounter at a friend's home. Champ is a mixed breed dog, about five years old. My friend and her husband have had him since he and his brother wandered up to their country home. They were about a month old and barely surviving. They needed nourishment, a safe place to live, and someone to care and adopt them.
My friends felt the need to take these pups inside their home and bring them back to life. They are thought to be pups from the wild dogs that run in the woods near them. Probably the mother had been killed or poisoned as other people in the community don't want these dogs roaming wildly and in-breeding continually. This is a huge threat to people and animals that own their country farms/ranches.
From the beginning of taking these pups to nurture and raise as their own, Champ was the most shy and appeared to be confused. He couldn't bark from birth and still can't at five years. Chase, name of the his brother appeared in better health and not so painfully shy.
The new parents of these pups took them to the vet and got their shots and what was needed to keep them soon after they adopted them. They grew quickly and Chase would run off at the slightest chance, but not Champ! These pups, because they came from wild dogs, didn't like domestication and resisted human touch and affection.
My wonderful friends decided at the beginning to keep them, give them a good home and love them as any new dog owner would. Somehow, Champ was not normal and continued to hide from people, even his owners at times. But, despite all the extra attention and nurturing Champ got, he never became comfortable with human touch and affection.
About a year ago, our friends sold their ranch and moved into the city. They knew it would be a challenge bringing the Champ and Chase into a totally different environment. Yet, the owners persisted and moved both the dogs with them. Chase was unable to adjust or adapt at all and was taken back to the ranch and left with the person who supposedly owned the dogs. The lady was elderly and had neglected the dogs and let them over populate until they found their own way by running wild in packs. She had been reported to the county authorities many times but action was never taken. She agreed to take Chase back since he was somewhat domesticated.
As of May 1, 2011 when I learned about the story of Champ and Chase, I became interested in why our friends continued to nurture and to win over these little wild pups. My friend explained that it seemed to her as if Champ could be compared to a human baby with disabilities, mentally and physically. Loving Christian parents would want to keep this baby and make the best life possible for their child. She and her husband wouldn't think of having Champ 'put-down' because of the way he was and continues to be.
This story touched my heart as I think about compassion, mercy, grace, unconditional love...all characteristics of God. Our friends are to be commended and recognized in the eyes of people as they already are in the eyes of God.
I Corinthians 13:13 is what I've come to recognize more of the meaning of LOVE, God's love shown and played out in this couple's adoption, caring, nurturing, and loving these pups, Champ and Chase !
Author, Sheri DeLoach
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