His name is Axel and when we met it was love at first sight. He has a scar, just like me. He’s slightly imperfect as I am, simply seeking a second chance. I didn’t know how to react initially. Should I hug him, should I kiss him, should I wait until he approaches me? I was so nervous. He’s just so cute and sweet. He didn’t say much… probably because Axel is a rescue dog.
He is one of the many rescue cases at Rabito Kontento, a local rescue group in Puerto Rico and his story will move you to tears. Axel was abandoned and found at a school in Puerto Rico. He had been hit on the head and the injury was so bad, one of his eyes popped out. The hemorrhage was bad. When the rescuers got the call, they ran over immediately. They cared for him and gave him all the medical attention he needed. Sadly, he lost one of his eyes. But he never lost hope. Now Axel is healthy and a super sweet boy who wants a family to love and care for him. But while Axel waits for his happily ever after, there are hundreds of others dogs who die before they even get the chance.
After hurricane Maria hit the island, dog abuse and abandonment increased immensely. People fled the island anxiously and mad about the situation. Many left their homes and their 4-legged family members behind. Many others took out their anger and distress at their furry friends. But animal abuse and the mistreatment of animals isn’t an issue exclusive to Puerto Rico. In the US, there too are millions of cases of animal abuse and the number will keep growing if we don’t begin to educate others about it.
The more people are educated about animal abuse, overpopulation and the desperate need for spaying and neutering, the more people out there are able to make a difference. With the high cost of living, and at a time when many families have seen a reduction in their incomes and have been hit by the unforeseen expenses of repairs, rebuilding and costs related to the recovery from Hurricane Maria, funds should be allocated to programs providing for spaying and neutering of pets to those who can’t afford it, and campaigns educating on animal abuse, that is now a crime punishable by law.
It aggravates me that people have so much evil in their hearts to hurt such innocent creatures. Animals don’t deserve being mistreated; they just want our love. In my POV, we should all find a way to help, whether it’s a local shelter or with strays we come across. No, you don’t need to adopt to be able to help the animal community. You can donate food and money, you can volunteer to feed and bathe the animals, or SHARE images and posts of dogs looking for homes or aid. It’s that simple! It takes a village to make a difference!
With over 300,000 stray dogs and over one million cats on the streets (in Puerto Rico alone) there simply aren’t enough rescue groups to take in all the abandoned animals. The cost of veterinary bills, food and shelter are just way too high for them to be able to operate without the help of others.
Animals are such an important part of our lives. To see a difference in this world, we need to be down to work and do our part with these abandoned living beings. We can’t sit down and be angry at animal abuse videos and do nothing about it! Whether you donate, volunteer, or adopt – you are making a difference. If you just stare and remain quiet, you’re just as guilty as the one doing wrong.
Note: Axel, featured in this story, is still available for adoption. If you are interested in more information, you can contact Rabito Kontento directly.