Vaquita is a Chihuahua who was adopted 7 years ago from an elderly neighbor. It was the black patches on her fur that made her family settle on naming her “vaquita,” which means “little cow” in Spanish. As an “only child” as described by her human mom, Julia, Vaquita enjoys playing with kids, but she also likes her own space. Julia went on to say, “Vaquita likes to chase our son around the house, and enjoys going for long walks to the bike trail.”
Every day, Vaquita’s family would take her on a walk around the Seaside neighborhood where they reside. Just before Vaquita’s daily neighborhood stroll, right before the family was getting ready to leave on a short trip -out of nowhere- a large, unleashed dog attacked Vaquita without notice or provocation. This dog picked Vaquita up by her back and shook her profusely, until her dad was able to get the dog to drop Vaquita from his mouth. Vaquita laid there- still, in shock and in horrific pain, having sustained numerous deep bite wounds that damaged both her neck and back, as well as several broken ribs.
Vaquita then suffered through an excruciatingly painful car ride to get her emergency care. After receiving the price estimate from emergency care for Vaquita’s life-saving surgery, the family quickly realized that the cost of her care was going to be more than they could afford. They family had no idea how they would be able to afford the needed surgery, and wondered if they would have to euthanize her in order to lessen her suffering.
With the previous prognosis from the hospital weighing heavily on the family, they decided to take Vaquita over to the family’s long time veterinary practice, Harden Valley Ranch. There, the treating veterinarian sponsored Vaquita for a Max’s Helping Paws Foundation (MHPF) grant. Max’s Helping Paws worked with other local nonprofits to help subsidize the cost of Vaquita’s surgery. Today, Vaquita is feeling much better, and is beginning to return back to her normal day to day activities, such as going on walks. Vaquita’s mom said, “At the beginning of all this, we were not sure, but she is strong because she’s part of us; and she is blessed to have you as the angel of pets. We know she won’t be herself again 100%, but she is a miracle thanks to agencies like yours.”