Momma Lucie, Mr. Big, Lefty, and The Gang
Placed through Friends of Rescued Mastiffs, Inc.
Agent and Coordinator, Andrea Anzivino
Momma Lucie is owned and loved by Donna Prezelski
Lefty is owned and loved by Patsy Recchia
Submitted by Andrea Anzivino
I am the Region 1 Coordinator for Friends Of Rescued Mastiffs serving all of the New England States, and would like to share a story that took place last year. I pulled a pair of Mastiffs, a male and a female, out of a dog shelter in Connecticut, back in January. They had been left on a freezing night, tied outside the shelter, waiting for someone to stumble upon and discover in the morning. The shelter contacted me, since the staff was not comfortable working with a giant breed, so I stepped in. It was believed that the female had recently whelped a litter because she was still engorged with milk and huge, despite the fact that she was so very, very thin everywhere else. No one imagined that they would enter the shelter one morning to find Momma Lucie, as I came to name her later, tending four brindle Mastiff babies. Hours after the discovery, she had a fifth pup, just as healthy as the previous four.
Momma Lucie had whelped the babies all by herself on the cold cement shelter floor, removed them from their sacs, cleaned them, took care of the cords, and nursed them. That was a miracle in itself, but what one of those pups did 6 months later, was nothing short of another, even greater, miracle.
I picked up both parents and all five puppies when they were only a week old. The sire Mr. Big was neutered, fostered between my home and another for eight weeks, and finally adopted, to enjoy a wonderful life in a new home, where his beautiful temperament could be appreciated every day. Momma Lucie and her lil charges stayed with me for the following nine weeks, where I served as maid service, and tended to several laundry loads a day, not to mention the rigors of newspaper detail!! Momma Lucie was never protective of her babies, with me or my family or any visitors; she was a darling girl and welcomed any visitors. She even accepted parenting assistance from Mr. Big while he was still with us, her boyfriend who was the most gentle Daddy. Being spayed did nothing to stop her friendly, gentle nature and meticulous care of her babies.
When the time finally came for the puppies and Momma Lucie to go to their adoptive forever-homes, I watched each of them leave with tears in my eyes, especially Momma Lucie. Oh, how she had wormed her way into my heart! Even today, I tear up typing this because I can truly say, I've never met a more special girl. Parting with her was difficult, but I had three Mastiffs of my own, and it wasn't feasible to keep her. I knew what had to be done and that she needed a special family all her own, which is exactly what she got. I have stayed in close contact with all my adopters, receiving pictures, and going on visits, and even providing month-long puppysitting service while one of my families was away.
I imagine you are waiting for the next miracle I mentioned above, and I am sorry to be so longwinded; but it's hard to leave out the background information that helps explain how special this whole family of Mastiffs is.
One day, I received an email from Patsy, the adopter of Lefty, one of the male pups, telling me that Lefty had saved her son's life. She reported that she could hear him barking furiously from somewhere in the house, and he would not stop, even when she called to him several times and tried to shush him. He wanted her attention and he wanted it now. When he became more frantic, she went off to find him, and investigate what her 6 month-old puppy was up to. The barking seemed to be coming from an upstairs bathroom whose door was ajar, so Patsy called out, and when there was no answer, pushed the door open to find, much to her alarm, her adult son lying on the floor. Several months prior to this, he had become very ill and moved back in with his parents. She found him unconscious and bleeding profusely from his nose, with Lefty standing beside him, licking his face. The faucets were running, and the tub was about to overflow.
When I called to make sure Patsy's son was okay, he answered the phone and told me that he couldn't fathom how Lefty had opened the bathroom door. Since the door was shut, of which he was certain, Lefty could only have opened it by turning the knob! For Lefty to want to get into the bathroom at all was very strange, since he was almost always right by Patsy's side. The son had recovered, and both he and his mother were incredibly emotional about the whole incident, convinced that Lefty is an incredibly special Mastiff. The more they told me, the more I came to believe that this little hero somehow sensed the son was in trouble, and was intent on getting into that bathroom, just as he later became intent on insisting Patsy come to help. I also understand that after this incident, Lefty decided that Patsy's son's side was a more important side to be on, and he switched over, refusing to be called away, even for a cookie.
I am incredibly proud of Lefty, my hero, and his whole Mastiff family who are so special and doing so well in their new forever-homes. It was an honor to be a part of this.