Hollie Cornes gives German shepherd Angel new life with surgery
Changchun, China, 2015: A van is on its way to a slaughterhouse. Countless dogs are trapped in cages on the loading area. But before the delivery can reach its terrible destination, the transporter is stopped by Chinese animal rights activists. The penned dogs are released and given to an animal welfare organization.
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The Belgian shepherd dog Angel is among the freed dogs. Even if she escaped a slaughter by a hair’s breadth, the unscrupulous meat traders played along with her: There is a gaping hole on the right side of the dog’s snout and part of her nose is missing. The wound probably stems from the iron tools used by traders to catch the animals and make them docile.
The pictures of the liberated animals go around the world. When the British Hollie Cornes sees photos of the rescue operation and the disfigured fishing rod, she immediately makes a decision: the 25-year-old dog trainer from Witney, Oxfordshire, is determined to adopt the tortured shepherd and give her the loving home that she has earned.
For the adoption, Angel is transported by plane to England by the animal welfare organization “Rushton Dog Rescue”. When Hollie and her boyfriend receive the shepherd, it’s love at first sight: “She ran straight towards us,” says Hollie. “We had our other dog with us and they hit it off right away. When I saw her like that, I knew that I just had to take her home with me. “
Angel is quickly getting used to her new home and soon has both her canine sibling and her adoptive mother completely wrapped around her paw. Hollie doesn’t regret the adoption for a second, but Angel’s wound worries her: Although the bitch has apparently got used to the gaping hole in her face, she sometimes obviously has problems breathing. Because the wound keeps getting infected, Hollie decides that something urgently needs to be done so that Angel can enjoy her new life to the fullest.
An operation is supposed to restore Angel’s face and allow her to breathe normally. But the procedure is very expensive: Even the preliminary examination, during which Angel’s face is scanned, costs 2,500 pounds (almost 2,900 euros). Hollie tries to raise funds for the operation with an online appeal for donations. And indeed: Thanks to generous donations from animal lovers all over the world, the equivalent of over 5,000 euros is raised within a few days. The operation can start soon!
The procedure is a complete success! The doctors not only succeed in reconstructing Angel’s snout, but also in removing the scar tissue behind her nose so that the shepherd can finally breathe normally again.
“They found that the area behind her nose was completely covered with scar tissue,” says Hollie, “so that she couldn’t breathe through that nostril at all, only through a 2 mm hole on the other side.” The operation has worked so really worth it and Angel can finally lead the happy life she deserves.
After her gruesome past and all the hardships, Angel is finally where she belongs: in the arms of a loving family. This was not only made possible by the fabulous doctors, but also by the Chinese animal rights activists and, last but not least, the many Internet fans who donated for the operation. After all the terrible experiences that Angel had to go through, the many Guardian Angels will hopefully give her back her belief in the good in people.
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