Where did her name come from?
Her name is the hebrew word for good or pleasing. She came from such a hard life, we thought she needed an extra positive name.
How did she come into your life?
We had a puppy before Tova that had special needs and it made us realize that the extra work comes with extra appreciation and love…so we got an email about her from a friend who knew we had lost him recently. She was a cruelty case in our county, so only had 3 legs…so she was going to need an understanding family, which I knew we could provide her. I was a little worried that because I was only a quarter away from graduating that we couldn’t afford another dog at that moment, but it was right before Christmas, so my father offered to get her for me as a Christmas gift. We put a big old red bow on her head the first night she was home and it has been the best Christmas present I’ve ever gotten.
How did she lose her leg?
Sadly, the people who had her before us didn’t understand her. Instead of feeding her well and loving her for being a smart and loving dog, they left her chained in their yard with little food and water. She became trapped in the chain and decided that since no one cared about her, she needed to free herself by chewing her own leg off. When our county rescued her from the yard, she had been hopping around the yard on her partially chewed off leg and it had started to heal on its own with ragged edges and bone sticking out. The non-profit group associated with our shelter, Friends of the Shelter, took her on and ended up amputating the rest of her leg.
Were there charges pressed against those who did that to her?
Sadly, I think the people were offered the option of surrendering her to avoid penalty. I am honestly not sure though, but I do know that Ohio has some extremely lax laws on animal neglect and abuse, which we are hoping get changed soon.
How long did it take for her to adjust to her new life?
It took her about a month to realize we weren’t going to leave her in the yard and that we just wanted to love her. She would get stressed out and leave the room to be by herself and calm down. Now she just wants to be a giant lap dog. Being a puppy helped her not be so “worried” about people, thankfully. I would have expected her to be aggressive at least a little….and this dog couldn’t hurt anything if she tried. She loves everyone and everything.
How is she with her furry siblings?
She has one dog sister, Quorra who is also a shepherd and they are the best of friends. She always looks up to Quorra to see what she is doing and how she should react to new situations. She also LOVES her kitty siblings. One kitty in particular likes to rub all over the dogs’ faces and then curl up right next to them. Tova also has been known to pick up mice out of the yard without killing them and then bring them into the house. Its scary for both me and the mouse! haha
How did you get involved with animals?
I grew up with pets, as did my husband. I also have a bachelor’s degree in zoology and put myself through undergrad while working for a veterinarian. When I went back to graduate school, I didn’t have time to work, but we realized we had some time to start volunteering. Now we are foster parents for a local humane society and we have fostered well over 50 kittens this year alone.
Is there a rescue/shelter/cause you support?
We like the non-profit where we adopted both of our dogs through, Friends of the Shelter for Franklin County, Ohio. Their link is: http://www.friendsoftheshelter.info/ We are fosters for Delaware County Humane Society and their link is: http://www.hsdcohio.org/
Every year around Christmas (for about the past 4 years or so…my husband and I are young) we like to collect supplies and money from our friends and family for the shelters and drop it off all at once. Its nice to know we are helping out the furry creatures who can’t speak for themselves.
Does she have her own page?
She has her own Facebook page that we are working on updating more…trying to get people to help adopt more dogs instead of going to breeders, etc. Her page is: www.facebook.com/toviemonster
Anything else you want to add about her?
One cute little thing that she does that cracks everyone up who meets her…since she only has 3 legs (she is missing her back right leg), she likes to garner attention however possible. This usually means she sits down, balances between her little stump and her other back leg, and then does the “puppy punch” where she forcefully puts her front paw onto your arm/leg and makes you pay attention to her. If you put her paw down, she’ll repeatedly puppy punch you until you give her the “appropriate” amount of attention.
We love her and think it’s silly that no one else would have wanted her just because she has 3 legs. She uses the stairs fine, jumps on my bed at night, plays with other dogs/cats and genuinely enjoys life. Sometimes we can catch her just looking around the house and you can almost see her thinking “Wow…I can’t believe this is my life now.” We’re just so happy that we are lucky enough to be her parents, and parents to all our other pets. They fulfill our lives as much as we fulfill theirs.Author’s Note: Thank you to Miss Lyndsay for the email, answering questions and sending me pictures.