A Lone Star to North Star Rescue Journey: Rocky and Linda

An animal can feel so confused and scared when they first enter a shelter. Especially when the owner they’ve known and loved for years is no longer by their side. Between the echoing barks and whines of other confused dogs to the fast footsteps of employees; It can be overwhelming to the point where the animal no longer acts like themself.

Some shelters are overcapacity, particularly in the southern United States. Senior Chihuahuas like Linda and Rocky would only have a short window to get adopted before they found themselves on a long list of animals to euthanize. This outcome is not how Ruff Start Rescue wants a dog’s final moments to be.

They belong in a home where they can feel the comfort of someone’s love for them no matter how long they have left. So, without hesitation, Ruff Start tagged Linda (Marigold) and her brother Rocky (Drumstick) to hitch a freedom ride from Texas to Minnesota through the Lone Star to North Star Rescue Relief program. After their thousand-mile journey, their fosters scooped them up from the rescue office and brought them HOME.

Rocky (left) and Linda (right) after arriving to their Texas foster home.

Both Linda and Rocky are 15 years old and have an old-age ailment, vestibular disease. Linda’s been holding steady since entering the rescue in November 2019. Unfortunately, Rocky passed away unexpectedly in his sleep due to complications from the disease on February 6, 2020. We take comfort in knowing that he was so well-loved during his short time with us.

Linda is thin but still enjoys eating. When she has a tough time finding her food, she will scream (we’ve all been there). Otherwise, Linda doesn’t care much for chatter. Linda often spins in circles (from the disease), is 90% blind, and almost deaf, but she LOVES to cuddle! Her condition is severe enough that Ruff Start placed her in our “fospice” (foster hospice) program. She is in this program to ensure she gets the care she needs for the remainder of her time with us.

The unknowns of fostering a hospice animal can be taxing, especially when we know that her time to leave us could happen at any moment. Linda has had a few emergency vet visits for gastroenteritis. Thankfully, Ruff Start’s veterinary team adjusted her medications and have her on a special diet that keeps that condition manageable and her quality of life intact.

To keep her safe, Linda spends a lot of her time in a big kennel with a washable training pad and a heating pad. Believe it or not, her favorite thing ever is bath time in the kitchen sink! Although she runs around really fast to ‘get away’ from her wet self afterward. Linda’s foster mom loves piling up all of the Chihuahuas in her home and watching junk TV during colder weather. When Linda’s not soaking up sun rays, you can find her upside down underneath several blankets taking the best nap of her life.

Without the Lone Star to North Star Rescue Relief Program, Linda and Rocky wouldn’t have experienced this unconditional love and care. You can support this program by sharing this article or making a contribution. Without your help, thousands of animals wouldn’t have gotten a second chance like Rocky and Linda.