MARY ESTHER — When Selena Andrews saw Lucy at the animal shelter in Chipley in February, she knew she had to save her even though she already had three rescue dogs of her own.
The kennel was dark, the floor was wet and Lucy struggled to get out of her bed to come to the gate for Andrews to pet her. When she asked the shelter’s manager about Lucy, she learned she was scheduled to be euthanized.
“The manager was so good there. They are only supposed to keep dogs for five days, but she was trying to find a home for Lucy and she kept her there for two and a half weeks,” said Andrews, who lives in Mary Esther. “By the time I was there, she was really living on borrowed time.”
Lucy ended up at the shelter after her elderly owner passed away, Andrews said. She was found in the house next to her owner’s body.
Lucy, who is estimated to be between 5 and 7 years old, has a spinal disability that affects her back legs. She can walk and even run sometimes, but that gets difficult, so she’d rather scoot herself across the floor instead.
“My vet said the injury looks like a trauma suffered when young, perhaps a hard kick or vehicle strike,” Andrews said. “She doesn’t let it stop her, though, and seems to have adapted to living with this disability.”
Andrews tried using a wheelchair with Lucy, but she didn’t take to it. A local charity has offered to provide a wheelchair in the future if Lucy decides she wants it. For now, they use an under-belly harness when she needs it.
Andrews, who has a newborn baby in addition to the dogs, is desperately trying to find a good home for Lucy, although they have a special bond.
Her husband is deployed with the military from Duke Field, and she plans to return to her home in the United Kingdom before Christmas. She hopes Lucy finds a new family before then.
Andrews fears she won’t be able to find Lucy a family even though she has taken her to countless adoption events and promotes her on social media. She even has her own Instagram page, @adopt.scootinlucy.
Andrews has found a few people interested in adopting Lucy, but they always pull out at the last minute. One person lived in Orlando and Andrews planned to travel down there to meet her.
Her husband took time off from work and the trip was planned. But the day before they left, the prospective adopter said she couldn’t take her.
“It does become a bit disheartening when so many people say they want her, but I think they like the idea of her,” Andrews said. “It’s really not too much work, but I think people think it is.”
Lucy is crate-trained and good with people and other dogs, Andrews said. She was heartworm positive when Andrews saved her, but it was treated and now she takes preventative medicine.
“Due to her being an only pet for a long time, I think she doesn’t like to share, and I would recommend that she goes to a home where she will be the only dog,” she said.
Andrews calls her Lenny sometimes, after the character in “Of Mice and Men,” because she “isn’t the smartest” and doesn’t realize her strength, so she will plow over other dogs.
But Andrews said Lucy is sweet, and all she wants from life is a comfy bed or couch to lie on, toys to play with and love.
“The first time I gave her a squeaky toy, I nearly cried because I think she had never had one before,” Andrews said. “She had no idea what to do with it. Now she loves them.”
View this post on Instagram
I love a garden and hanging out by the pool. #fostertoadopt #petswithdisabilities #adoptme