Donna Lochmann embarked on a critical rescue mission to save four adorable chubby puppies and their fiercely protective mother, who had taken refuge in a backyard filled with piles of debris and overgrown grass.
Amidst the squalor resulting from a possible eviction of their human owners, a lovable dog named Donutfest emerged as a brave and affectionate creature, expressing her gratitude and happiness through a radiant smile. Donna, the Chief Lifesaving Officer at Stray Rescue of St. Louis, received a distress call in 2022 regarding a dog family in desperate need of help. The concerned caller had spotted them hiding amidst tall grass and weeds in an unkempt backyard.
Knowing that rescuing the puppies would be challenging due to the mother’s protective instincts, Donna devised a careful plan to save both the mother and her adorable offspring. Instead of starting with the puppies, she decided to focus on rescuing the mother first, considering her potential reaction to the puppies being handled.
Donna noticed the sad, hungry eyes of the white-furred mother, whose head was covered in scratches. Armed with tools to aid in the rescue operation, she enticed the starving mother with the aroma of Vienna sausages, eventually coaxing her into the car. Donutfest, as she was named by Donna due to her love for donuts, willingly climbed into the vehicle, enabling Donna to proceed with the puppy rescue.
Having secured Donutfest’s safety, Donna began her search for the puppies. The first one was found near a fence, huddled alone, and while it didn’t attempt to flee, it vocally expressed its discontent. Undeterred by the lack of response from the neighborhood, Donna reunited the outspoken puppy with its mother in the car. She then set out to find the remaining puppies.
Scanning the yard, Donna spotted two puppies hiding in the weeds, while the third was still curled up on a dilapidated couch. Aware of their tendency to evade capture, the experienced rescuer employed the same strategy that had worked with the mother. By tempting them with the aroma of puppy food, she managed to retrieve one of the puppies, as its hunger overcame its fear.
With Donutfest and three of the four puppies safely secured in the car, Donna now only needed to rescue the last puppy, which had left its spot on the couch. The puppy’s slow movements allowed Donna to gently pick it up before it could gather speed.
After successfully rescuing all the dogs, Donna brought them back to the rescue organization. The puppies underwent veterinary screenings and were quickly placed into foster care. Stray Rescue of St. Louis posted photos of the adorable, chubby babies, named Maple Long John, Chocolate Sprinkles, Jelly Filled, and Boston Crème, which generated significant interest from families eager to provide them with a loving home.
The mother dog was spayed, and estimated to be around three years old, she found her forever home on the day of St. Louis’ Donut Fest in the autumn of 2022.
Donutfest, with her heartwarming transformation from a sad and defeated dog to a joyful and grateful companion, captured the hearts of the Stray Rescue staff. The organization’s Facebook page showcased the photos, along with a statement expressing their gratitude for the support received. The page also shed light on the rescue’s tireless efforts to save abused, neglected, and abandoned dogs and cats, presenting both heart-wrenching and heartwarming stories.
The eviction moratorium expiration in 2021 led to an influx of pets needing homes, with an estimated 8 million pets left behind or housed in already-overcrowded shelters. The ASPCA reported alarming statistics, stating that around 920,000 shelter animals (390,000 dogs and 530,000 cats) are euthanized each year due to various reasons.
Stray Rescue of St. Louis stands out as a no-kill shelter, refusing to euthanize animals based on illness or overpopulation. The organization’s mission is to offer a safe haven for animals that other organizations might turn away due to the cost of treatment. They believe in seeing beyond the brokenness and offering second chances for health, commitment, and love to every animal that crosses their path.
The rescue’s Facebook posts have highlighted animals like Owen, a severely injured dog whose legs were paralyzed and raw from dragging himself after being beaten and abandoned. Another story featured Remo, a young dog who had been shot in the leg and had undergone emergency surgery. Remo’s inspiring recovery and adoption were shared, bringing joy to everyone involved.
Stray Rescue of St. Louis extends its heartfelt appreciation to all those who contribute to their selfless efforts in saving innocent animals. They encourage readers to share these heartwarming stories to raise awareness about the pressing nationwide issue of homeless, neglected, and abused pets.