A second chance

Appeal. Maltese shih tzu Casper will have a happy Christmas with his owner by his side this year, though this wasn’t always the case. 

The rescue pup was just two years old when he was abandoned and surrendered to Smithton Veterinary Service to be euthanised.

Natalie Cole was working at the front desk when the shy pup came through the doors, and knew she couldn’t let that happen. So she signed the paperwork to officially adopt the pup.

Riddled with flees and with blisters in his stomach, Nat had to reintroduce food to her new friend and nurse him back to health.

He was desexed, microchipped and vaccinated and had to have 11 teeth removed due to poor care in her early years.

“He was so skinny and scared,” says Nat.

“It took a year for him to trust people, visitors.”

Today, Casper is a happy, energetic four-year-old who is a big fan of chasing birds and mealtime.

“He’s my shadow now,” says Nat. “Just unconditional love from him.”

To help out furry friends like Casper, Smithton Police is once again a drop off point for the Dogs’ Home of Tasmania’s annual appeal.

Based in Burnie, Devonport and Hobart, the not-for-profit organisation cares for homeless and unwanted dogs who are desexed, vaccinated and microchipped before being put up for adoption.

Donations of polar fleece blankets, leads and collars, hard toys (not stuffed) and canned food and treats as well as cash will assist the organisation this Christmas.

Sergeant Lee-Anne Walters urged locals to consider the commitment of owning a dog and suggested adopting.

“It’s a commitment in excess of 10 years, including holidays,” she says.

“Animals need to be stimulated mentally and physically, with proper nutrition and veterinary care.”

In return for the care and love you’ll give your dog, you will have a loyal friend for life. 

For more information or to donate to the Dogs’ Home of Tasmania contact Smithton Police on 131 444 or visit Smithton Police Station, 22 Smith Street, Smithton before Christmas. The station is open Monday to Thursday from 9am to 1pm, if unattended ring the buzzer.

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