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  • Roy Hughes

From "The Survivor, A Rescue Story"

When I was new to the world of rescue there was an event, a dog that set me down the path I follow to this day. The following is an exert from the story wrote so long ago:

"When I lifted what resembled a dog from the back seat, it felt like lifting a bag of dried leaves; brittle and dry with only a trace of life. The dog weighed less than fifty pounds and should have weighed in at ninety. Too weak to stand on his own, this shadow of an animal leaned against the garage wal...l and took but one small taste of water. Swallowing seemed to take all remaining strength and he slid to a prone position at the base of the wall where he lay trembling. Did this dog have the strength to survive the night? I did not think so. I sat by him, placed his head in my lap, looked into his eyes, and found the hope so desperately needed; the promise of survival. In those eyes there was a spark, ever so faint but undeniable. In those eyes the fire of his African heritage burned. Look long and close into the eyes of any true Ridgeback and the character of the dog that was bred to never give up, never surrender the prey, never abandon the chase will be evident. Though faint and distant the character of his breeding was still there. The pulse of his strong and noble heart could be felt from the neck resting against my leg with a rhythm of distant drums that bore the message, I will survive."

From "The Survivor, a rescue story"

By Roy Hughes

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