What does "quality of life" mean to you? One definition says that it is daily living enhanced by wholesome food and clean air and water, enjoyment of unfettered open spaces, protection, and the energy and power someone is endowed with so that he or she can enjoy life and prevail over life's challenges.
For eight years, Violet had been "living" in a tent in Louisiana with ten other dogs, until one by one, they passed away, leaving her alone. All the dogs had been tied up and severely neglected. It is astounding that Violet didn't die along with the rest.
When the Humane Society of the United States stepped in to rescue her, they assumed she would be feral from having lived in that condition for so long. Laura Koivula, deputy manager of animal crime for the HSUS, described her as "really sweet." When she was taken to the Louisiana SPCA, she was emaciated and weak and covered over every inch of her nearly hairless body with mange. In addition, she had progressive dental disease and heartworms.
Treatment for eight-year-old Violet began right away, yet months would pass before her hair started growing back and she began gaining weight. The best thing was that her beautiful personality began to break through.
After five months, something really wonderful happened. While her timidity had somewhat restricted her curiosity, someone came into the shelter and turned her life upside down. Danielle Hanisee had worked at the shelter for six years but hadn't been in to visit for some time. When her beloved pit bull mix passed away, she decided to check out who at the shelter might really need her. That's when she met Violet.
Violet connected with Hanisee instantly. But to make sure that she was ready for the next step, Hanisee offered to foster her for a week. At first, Violet was frightened by new things. Cars and wood floors were really scary, but Hanisee knew she just needed time and patience to gain confidence.
Six months after being rescued, Violet and Hanisee made it official. The happy dog tended to stick close to her mom for self-assurance and she discovered that her cat sibling made a good companion, too.
Then one day Violet's mom took her to a dog park. Violet's entire demeanor changed when she saw other dogs. It was obvious that she related best to those of her own kind. That's where her true comfort lay.
“She’s very curious, so she loves to just sit on the front porch like a little old lady and be nosy,” Hanisee said. “And when we’re walking on the trails, she wants to follow every dog she sees. They’re her main thing.” The rescue and rehabilitation of Violet have touched many people. Koivula says the resilience of the dog and the amazing transformation will stay with her forever.
Watch Violet's video to see her amazing story and share it with your friends. From a definite death sentence to a wonderful family, Violet has found a quality of life all animals deserve. Tell us what you think in the comments!