There’s nothing so heartbreaking as the sight of a helpless, abandoned animal—so when Des Moines, Iowa-based animal rescue shelter Furry Friends Refuge received a pair of crates packed beyond capacity with nine mistreated bichon frise pups, it was a sight almost too devastating to look at.
The sad puppies in the pair of crates were in bad shape. Many of them had fleas, and their fur was so matted that the clumped-together fur was pinching and pulling at their skin. According to a post by the rescue shelter, they were in bad need of dental care, and many had ear infections.
Situations like these often occur when either an irresponsible breeder or a pet hoarder gets in over their head, so it wasn’t an unheard-of scenario. But even though the shelter immediately went to work finding foster homes for the pups, the most pressing need to address was their physical ailments—most importantly their fur, which was trapping the fleas in and causing the dogs immense distress.
Luckily for the shelter, a kindhearted groomer stepped up to the plate!
Chrissy Elliott, the owner of a local animal-grooming shop, commented on one of their Facebook posts to offer her assistance as the shelter tried to take care of the group of adorable four-legged friends.
“Did you get them completely groomed or did you just shave the Matted parts off?” Elliott wrote. “I own bark n bubbles down the street I will do full groom on all of them for free before they go to a home.”
Thrilled by the offer, the shelter was more than happy to take Elliott up on her offer. And after showing up looking heartbreaking beyond compare, the pups were soon looking like completely different animals—and infinitely happier to boot.
“On Saturday we groomed these little ones,” Elliott wrote from the official Bark N Bubbles account. “4 of the 7 groomed. It’s crazy to see the before and after they did so good considering they have had no grooming prior.”
The nine puppies weren’t house-trained yet, so they have a ways to go before they’ll be fully ready to be immersed in society. Shelter manager Andrea Touzani reassured The Dodo that the shelter has gotten law enforcement involved to hopefully avoid a similar situation again, and these pups are well on their way to being ready for loving homes to take them in for good!