Dogs can be our companions; they can also teach us many valuable lessons. Here is one such special dog.
Muneca, an older dachshund of 18 years, was blind and on death row at the Baldwin Park Animal Care Center in October 2016—her number was up. Elaine Seamans, a shelter volunteer, invited photographer John Hwang to take a few shots highlighting the plight of homeless dogs.
Hwang told TheDodo: “When I got to the shelter, Elaine was already holding the dog. The dog was clinging on to her.”
Sympathetic shelter volunteers try to make the last moments of life for those animals to be euthanized special.
This was one of those moments.
“Ultimately, the person who sees the photo—I want them to feel something. I want them to feel a connection.”
“If I can capture the right sort of connect, then the person who sees the image will feel it too,” said Hwang.
A group called the Frosted Faces Foundation saw Hwang’s popular Facebook post, and they set about getting Muneca out.
Many others wanted to help, and Executive Director of Frosted Faces Kelly Smisek fielded requests from far and wide offering a home for Muneca.
“We screened a lot of people and talked to all their references. We home-checked a bunch of people. By the time we approved someone, and they drove to San Diego, I met them, I was very nervous,” said Smisek.
“I thought, ‘I hope we picked the right person.’”
Upon finding that lucky right person, Smisek exclaimed, “Oh my Gosh. I’m so glad she’s going home with you.”
That special person was Amy Gann, who messaged Smisek: “I can’t put her down. I have very close family and we pass her along like a new baby in the family.”
Gann, upon welcoming the 18-year-old dog into her home, kept Muneca close to her while she worked around the house.
The dachshund had found her happy home, and her last days on earth were special. She passed away on March 3, 2018.
Gann shared her last moments on the FrostedFacesFoundation Facebook page. “We said goodbye to this little bony bean burrito today. She would have been 20 in August.”
“I only had her for 17 months, but in that time she taught me so much about being patient, not giving up and problem solving.”
“Thank you Mooner Booner for finding me, teaching me & waking me up every morning at 4 am. I sure fell in love with you.”
Thanks to Gann, Muneca had the last chance to live happily with a human before she breathed her last.
Sadly, dogs in rescue that are blind or have severe sight issues have a lower chance of getting adopted, because most people are fearful of shouldering the additional responsibility to care for a visually impaired dog.
However, just because a dog has gone blind, it doesn’t mean it should be put down, as losing its vision doesn’t really affect a canine too much. “Smell is their primary sense and this means that the loss of sight for a dog is less dramatic than it is for a human,” as stated on YourDogAdvisor.com.
In fact, taking care of blind dogs isn’t really a daunting task and “there is no reason why a blind dog should not be able to live just as full and enjoyable life as a sighted one.”
For a comprehensive guide on 12 tips for living with a blind dog, please visit: https://yourdogadvisor.com/blind-dog/.