Loreta's Top 10 Rescues

Hello my dear friends,

Hope you’ve been well. I have been away in Lithuania for a few months spending some much-needed quality time with my dad and mom (she lives in Spain so she came for a short visit also).  I just got back to LA, and have insane jetlag, so what do I do at 3 AM while being wide awake next to my precious poodle Paddington? I decided to write about my all-time top ten favorite rescue stories that I love for so many different reasons and hope you’ll watch them again through my heart and eyes:

1. FIONA. Like many of you, this was the first Hope For Paws video I ever saw. I cried like a baby, I was so touched by these two amazing human beings Eldad and Audrey. I watched that video over and over and cried each time for little Fiona. Never did I think that one day I will be part of this incredible organization. I thought that can only happen in a dream. Fast forward 10 years later, I am with Hope For Paws, Eldad is my better half and Audrey has become my best friend and my soul sister. Fiona sadly has passed away three years ago on my birthday, but she had the most incredible home with my dear friends Michele and Chris Gentry. Fiona also got to welcome to her perfect family my two other favorite rescued babies Alice and Abby. Rest In Peace sweet Fifi, your beautiful rescue story changed the lives of thousands of animals and touched the hearts of millions of people around the globe. You will forever be my superhero doggie and you will always be the Hope For Paws Angel. ❤️I love you ❤️

2. ALICE aka SUFI 💖. Alice was my Fiona. It was the first time I ever saw a dog in such horrific condition but with such a strong spirit and will to fight and live. When I met her on the rescue, my heart broke into a million pieces. How can anyone do to her what they did and leave her like this??? All I wanted to do was take her home and give her all the love in the world and keep her safe. I’ll never forget that moment when we had to leave her at the hospital, and as I was walking away she screamed for me, it was so heart-wrenching that I couldn’t yet take her home as she needed to be hospitalized for many serious health issues. We had such a strong connection and she knew that I would be there for her. Several days later I took her home and fostered her for several weeks until she was ready to join her new sisters Fiona and Bella and her incredible new parents Michele and Chris Gentry. 

Alice recently passed away, but she got to live a dream life. I will never forget you my sweet girl, you changed me, you changed all of us for the better. You are the perfect example of living in the moment and loving unconditionally. Tears are falling down my face as I share these incredible stories with you. In her video, you’ll see my babies Bonnie and Coco who also passed away in the last 2-3 years. So special to be able to have these rescue stories that will live forever with our beloved pets. 

3. WASHINGTON. I will forever have scars on my hand to remind me of this very special boy. In true poodle nature, he was a fighter. He was badly injured and didn’t trust anyone. Eldad warned me not to grab him, but we had so many things going against us on this rescue that if we lost him in that desert area full of coyotes, he wouldn’t have made it another night. His injury also needed immediate care or he would have gotten sepsis. We were running out of time so I did what I felt I had to do. This was my first serious bite, he wouldn’t let go of my hand (and neither would I) and the pain was excruciating! But a few moments later, he realized that we were there to help and he wagged his tail!!! 

Of course, we took him to the hospital first, and then it was my turn to be rescued (Urgent Care 🤦). Washington had surgery and healed perfectly without having to lose his badly injured paw. He is such a happy boy now!!! All is forgiven and as I always say, it was worth it and I’d do it all over again even if they bite me. Trust me, the bites didn’t end there, but this rescue taught me that I don’t let go even if I am in pain and that gave me a huge confidence boost for many rescues to come. I still don’t let go. 😂

4. ABBY 🌺. Abby didn’t feel a kind human touch for almost two years, if ever, now that I think about it. Someone captured her previously and kept her in a cage for 2 months. She managed to escape, but she no longer trusted humans. When Eldad, JoAnn, and I arrived on the rescue scene, we were told this will be very challenging and will take a long time. Abby was so matted that she didn’t even look like a dog. She had dreads all the way to the ground, you couldn’t see her face or her paws, and she was so overgrown that she didn’t even have flees as they couldn’t get to the skin through that insane matting. I was so eager to rescue her and shave her. What a relief that would be for her little body. This time to avoid a bite I followed Eldad’s instructions (sort of) to gain her trust patiently, feed her, and hopefully, she would come to me on her terms. Well, I was so scared to lose her, that I just grabbed her when the moment felt right. I guess I didn’t follow his guidance fully, but I followed my heart. 

I know that when I listen to my gut feeling, things go the right way for me. I ended up fostering Abby with Eldad and Bonnie. But guess who opened their hearts and home to her? Fiona, Alice, Michele and Chris Gentry. ❤️❤️❤️

5. JESSIE! Oh my that was the most stressful rescue ever!!! Jessie fell 45 feet deep into a tiny water well pipe in South Carolina. He was stuck there for four days before we were called for help. At this point, a kitten with no food, no water, and freezing cold normally wouldn’t survive, but that’s the miracle of Jessie. Being so far away Eldad and I had insane anxiety levels. We had no idea if we would make it in time. We took the red-eye flight in hopes that Jessie would still be alive (very unlikely at this point). We had our incredible Hope For Paws followers suggest lots of rescue techniques as this was a first one for us. I guess when you have such a strong and huge group of people routing for Jessie, that powerful energy of love is what kept little Jessie alive. 

Our dear friend Kimberly was waiting for us on the ground and she recruited an amazing plumber to assist us. This is not Kimberly's first rodeo with Hope For Paws - she also assisted Eldad with Shaggy, and assisted us with Hermione.

Eldad became an even bigger hero to me that day. He did something that was truly impossible that’s why this entire rescue mission was just one big miracle! I won’t give too much away because I want you to see and feel what we felt, but my dad who is our biggest believer told us not to go. He said it would be impossible to get Jessie out of the ground. Well, to Eldad impossible is what makes him who he is! 💞

6. NAPOLEON. What in the world is a little kitten doing in a fast lane of a crazy busy LA freeway??? Did someone throw him out the window and left him to die? Many times as we see such horrors being caused by people, we also saw how the entire Los Angeles main freeway came to a complete stop in order to help us achieve this very dangerous and life-threatening rescue. My parents were very upset with me. If you closely watch what happens just after we get the kitten rescued, you’ll see a car driving at insane speed on that fast lane. Yup, we dodged death this time and are so glad that no accident happened. Some people were angry at us and we understand that. We tried to have the police help us with this rescue, but we had no luck getting help and this kitten could have been killed any moment now. Imagine driving to a rescue and not knowing if he will be alive or if you’ll find a dead baby. The stress levels are insane and you just want to help!!! 

I would never encourage anyone to do this without the proper help of the police, but the kind people of LA truly helped us by stopping and waited for us to get the little kitten safely. After this rescue we had the police help us several times and we are so grateful to them for keeping all of us safe on the roads. 

7. GERSHWIN. This was one of my very first (5 years ago) and more challenging rescues. Gershwin is a 110-pound dog who was abandoned in a desert on a very hot day. He kept running away from us, but he got tired, fell asleep, and then I sneaked up on him not knowing what this giant dog would do to me. For some laughs, watch his rescue story. All I can say is that being dragged on sewer water-soaked grass by this bear-sized dog is no fun for me but fun to watch for you. 😂

It is one of the best rescue stories we have. ❤️

8. MADDY: This is special to me because it shows how an angry, broken dog still has a chance to become a family dog through proper training and patience. Many times dogs like her are euthanized for no fault of their own. Maddy could have absolutely injured or killed us, but Eldad and I are always very calm on rescues, and with Eldad’s huge experience and resilience we were able to save this beautiful shepherd. Her transformation is incredible and we hope that many people will see how a broken dog just like a human can act out from fear, mistrust, abuse, and pain. We wouldn’t give up on a human being so we shouldn’t give up on a dog either. They all have a past and a story to tell.

9. MASIK. We always say do not chase a dog, don’t run after a dog and here we are going against our own advice! This was some crazy running marathon and I didn’t even believe I could snare him while running so fast! When I am on rescues with Eldad, I get so much confidence knowing that he is right here just in case I need him. So he said to run and I ran. 😂

It’s a must-watch rescue story!!! I don’t know if this can be repeated again or if I was just really lucky running on autopilot and adrenaline.

10. THE CANDY FAMILY. When I say to always trust your gut feeling, there is a reason why. We just finished a rescue, and I saw another dog at the nearby park. For some reason, I felt that she is hiding something so I followed her. Well, my instincts were right! She had puppies!!! Flee-ridden babies that were at risk of anemia and/or death. The person who was feeding her didn’t want us to take them. He believed that they would be better off living at this park and he would continue feeding them. After a few minutes of conversation in Spanish, he understood that not only do they need immediate medical help, but also deserve a better life than living on the streets with dangers lurking everywhere. 

Educating people in a kind and patient way is what we need in order to make them understand what these animals need and how they should live. I will forever be grateful to him for feeding the mom so she could feed her babies, but now their new life was about to begin. At the hospital, Eldad and I got to work on the puppies. We have never seen so many fleas!!! There were thousands and they were eating the puppies alive. This definitely is that feel-good rescue that I wanted to finish my top ten with. You’ll love it!!!

Exactly a year after their rescue, we were invited to a birthday party and a special reunion of this whole family.

As you can see, your donations have saved countless lives, but so many more are in need of our help. Only with your support can we continue saving these poor animals as the vet care costs have significantly increased this year. We will never stop doing our part, but we really need your continued support. It truly takes a huge and compassionate village to save each and every animal and so many more that you don’t see because they don’t have a video. Please donate to save another precious life in need.

Thank you!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your continued support and for believing in our work.

With all my gratitude, 

xoxo Loreta 

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