Monday, April 13, 2009

Gentle Ben, road warrior

Submitted by EARS Regional Director Diann Wellman of Hartford City, Indiana

We drove from the Pet Expo and National Conference on Animals in Disaster in Las Vegas to pick up Ben from the Bella Vista Animal Shelter in Arkansas, where he has been staying since his liberation from the puppy mill a couple of weeks ago. Ben is a ten-year-old, blind, BIG Akita who is one of the most gentle souls I have ever met. Because he lived for ten years confined to a very small cage and is unable to see the world very clearly, he relishes in every new thing. It makes me very emotional to see how even the smallest things make him so very happy. His nose has been in overdrive since the time we picked him up!

The first night on the road, Ben was my roomie in the hotel. He quickly settled in, but was very fascinated by the television, especially if a woman was talking. I think he must like women more than men, because he really perks up when he hears a female voice. I was a little worried that we wouldn't get much sleep that night, but Ben slept pretty well and woke me up when he wanted to go outside. How smart is that for a dog who has never had that luxury before?? When I was taking a shower that morning, I was a little startled to see a big, furry head poke in the shower curtain!!!

Today we drove pretty hard all day to get to Maryland, so Ben can go see the folks at the HSUS headquarters in the morning before he heads the rest of the way to his new foster home. We are glad to be somewhere we can rest, and relax for a bit...

I have been trying to take photos as often as I can. Sometimes it's hard to do anything on the computer without a big wet nose trying to figure out what I'm doing!

Thanks to everyone for your support of this big gentle giant. I feel very honored to have been able to meet him, care for him, and be a part of his trip to a wonderful, new life.

More to come soon!!



  1. Ben is not going to an Akita rescue in PA but to Joann Dimon, part of ARWNY, who lives in TOMS RIVER, NJ -- so he is going to NEW JERSEY and will be picked up on Tuesday by Joann's husband Matt Dimon. We are so proud of Joann and her family for stepping in to help Ben. He will get a loving forever home thru our rescue efforts and contacts!!

  2. Ben is going to the most loving, wonderful home. Joann and Matt (and kids) foster, adopt, rescue, and save Akita after Akita.

    My beautiful Nikki is sleeping beside my chair. She spent three months with the Dimon's before she adopted me.

    In two weeks we will travel to visit Ben- I will bring him some roast beef because I heard he likes this newly discovered food.

    Thank you all for saving this magnificent dog. He is truly gentle and deserves to spend his remaining years in a loving home where he can sleep in the grass, curl before the television, sniff out treats hidden for him, and play with cats.

    Bob and Nikki

  3. Thanks for clarifying that, Kathy. We've updated the post to reflect this information. It sounds like Ben is going to be in great hands!

    -- Alexis
    United Animal Nations

  4. THANK YOU ALL! Ben is Coming to his Forever home in two short days. He will Have Nothing but Love, Green Vermont space, Fresh Air, and Family for the rest of his life. We Are SO very grateful for everyone who made Ben's Journey & rehabilition Possible- His medical care will be ongoing, but We expect He'll be Up & running in no time! I plan to Spoil him rotten, to make up for lost time. We'll be toasting to you all as we sit down to our roast Beast dinner Thursday night, Ben's first night at home.

    - Stefanie, Morning Glory, & Wee Harper


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