Her Name is Hope

A Heavenly Creatures Report by Karen GosseA German Shepherd called Hope

I named her Hope - it seemed a good match.

She was picked up wandering the streets of Paradise, severely underweight and with a gash in her forehead.

My first encounter with this beautiful female German Shepherd was at the Mount Pearl animal shelter. I found her huddled in the corner of her kennel terrified and cowering at the sound of our voices, a look of desperation in her big brown eyes. It was truly heartbreaking to see such a powerful, intelligent animal reduced to this poor defeated bundle of fur and bones. It saddened and angered me beyond words.

A German Shepherd called HopeHer bond with the Animal Control Officer who took care of her briefly proved that Hope was still capable of trusting people, but she needed far more care than we at Heavenly Creatures could provide. Thus began our search for people who could help us get Hope to a German Shepherd rescue group in Nova Scotia called East Coast German Shepherd Rescue.

This group deals with abused and abandoned German Shepherds on a daily basis and would be able to help rehabilitate Hope both physically and emotionally. They were waiting with open arms--we just needed to get her there.

A German Shepherd called HopeWhen Hope's predicament was made known, the people of St. John's, Mount Pearl and surrounding areas showed a real outpouring of both concern and outrage, coupled with generosity. Heavenly Creatures was able to raise enough money to help with Hope's veterinary care and to arrange the flight to her new home where her healing--and new life--would begin.

When I brought Hope to the airport and readied her for her trip, I laid my hand against the door to her kennel and spoke softly to her, trying to explain where she was going and that she was in safe hands. That amazing, sweet dog leaned her head against my hand through the cage and closed her eyes. . . Now it may sound silly, but I'm sure that although she may not have understood the words I spoke, she understood the meaning and realized that I would cause her no harm. After all she had suffered at the hands of a human she was still reaching out to connect to me. Her courage astounded me. It was the first time I had seen her truly relax.

Hope arrived in Nova Scotia safe and sound and is settling in at her new home with Leah, the woman who offered to open her home from this wonderful rescue group. In the short time I had the privilege of knowing Hope, her unforgettable scarred face touched my heart.

A German Shepherd called HopeFor those who have donated to help Hope, we thank you ~ the difference you have made in her life is immeasurable.

Thank you for helping Heavenly Creatures save her.

UPDATE ON HOPE DEC 18/07: Hope was spayed today and Leah had them check her head wound. The wound was not good. There was a hole in her head leading into her nasal passage. They removed bones fragments and lots of fur. It has all been cleaned out and stitched up and should heal fine. The vet thinks that she may have been shot.

I imagine someone likely took her up in the woods to kill her instead of paying a vet to put her down (I've heard of people doing this before) and it sickens me.

To think what this poor dog has gone through! No wonder she was terrified of everyone.

Her new family loves her very much Leah said, and is taking very good care of her. She is still at the vet recovering from surgery but they think she will be OK.

Added point:

German Shepherds are often a misunderstood breed. Their initial 'aloof'' behavior is natural for this breed and often mistaken for aggression. In fact, German Shepherds simply take a little time to get to know people and establish an unbreakable bond of loyalty--which is why they ultimately protect our families so well. In addition to being gentle family pets, German Shepherds are also highly intelligent animals.

A German Shepherd called HopeUnfortunately, German Shepherds are tied out and mistreated on a regular basis in Newfoundland and Labrador and their undeserved reputation as ‘vicious dogs' is due solely to this inhumane treatment. As with all creatures, German Shepherds need socialization and loving human contact in order to develop properly, and deserve our respect and kindness.

Links of interest

East Coast German Shepherd Rescue


Information on German Shepherds


Note: pictures of Hope taken at Mount Pearl Animal Control on October 31, 2007.

15 Responses to “Her Name is Hope”

Heavenly Creatures » Blog Archive » This Is Why We Do It sent a pingback on November 13, 2007

[...] Hope’s story. [...]

Heavenly Creatures » Blog Archive » Update on Hope sent a pingback on November 20, 2007

[...] sent in an update on Hope, [...]

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David Chiasson wrote a comment on December 4, 2018

Just a final update on Hope
Hope passed away on Sept 11, 2018, we had Hope science Feb 2008 She became a wonderful dog after a lot of Love and attention. I personally took six months off of work as I was semiretired it was good for both of us. Finally one day the light bulb came on and Hope realized She had found her forever home and we had found the dog of our dreams. We had been advised She would always have to be muzzled and on a lead or in a pen, after She realized She was in her forever home she was never on a leash or restrained she had the run of the property and never strayed once except for a raccoon hunt one evening. She spent most of her time doing fun stuff She loved to do, going for rides in Her antique truck, going out on the boat, going for road trips with us or just helping Patti in the garden on the weekends.
She will be sadly missed by us and would like to thank Leah and the girls from Heavenly Creatures for putting Her in our lives.

David and Patti

Rachel wrote a comment on April 8, 2019

Thank you for sharing the story and your journey, loved your website. So, unfortunate and cruel that some people treat these lovely animals with neglect. You are awesome that you rescued Hope!!
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Aca Baranton wrote a comment on May 25, 2020

I had tears in my eyes reading the account of Hope's life and I wonder what kind of person would have even thought of shooting this so adorable and loving dog! I hope she has recovered completely and all her emotional scars are healed and she is back to her confident self.

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