Dog Who Had Lost All Hope In Shelter Gets The Best Freedom Walk Ever

Written by: Dina Fantegrossi

March 16, 2016

On March 2, the Mercer County Animal Shelter posted a heartwarming video of a Pibble named Coffee’s freedom walk. The brindle and white pooch marched proudly under a trellis adorned with balloons and flowers while shelter staff applauded and snapped photos and video.

Why was Coffee’s rescue such a big deal compared to the hundreds of other animals the shelter has helped? Because it almost didn’t happen at all. After months of watching him passed over for adoption, the staff was agonizing over whether or not to place Coffee on the euthanasia list.


The sweet, social dog had become despondent spending day after day in his kennel. Workers gave Coffee as much time and love as they could, but nothing could take the place of a real home. Coffee had begun banging his head against the walls, and the light of joy was dimming from his eyes.

Enter Ellyn Kail. She’s a BarkPost writer who specializes in articles about adoptable dogs in need. Recently, she penned a heartfelt post about Coffee’s dire situation that generated hundreds of comments on Facebook and more than 16,000 shares! Thanks to Ellyn, Kaigan’s ARK Rescue in Bristol, VA got wind of Coffee’s plight and stepped up to place him into a foster home where he could begin to heal from his emotional wounds.


Not only did Ellyn’s post bring about Coffee’s rescue, it can also be credited, in part, for generating donations and adoption awareness for the Mercy County Shelter. Two more of Ellyn’s passionate posts have helped to bring about the rescue of the dogs they featured. Bredge and Dudley are two Pit Bulls with abusive backgrounds that ended up at the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter.

Bredge managed to escape from his abuser – he was found with a broken chain around his neck and scars on his face and body. The shelter set out to raise enough money to send Bredge to Forever Home Rescue and Rehabilitation Center where he could receive specialized training and therapy to prepare him for adoption. Ellyn’s post about Bredge helped generate enough exposure to his GoFundMe page to exceed the goal and set Bredge on the path to his forever home!


Another former resident of the Hempstead Shelter has been described as having a “big old melon head,” and when you see his photo you’ll know why! Dudley was in danger of euthanasia due to incidents of fear biting. His only chance was to gain entry into Forever Home Rescue and Rehab for one-on-one training. Ellyn shared Dudley’s story and GoFundMe page information in another passionate BarkPost article. Once again, her emotional prose helped save a misunderstood pup’s life!


And Ellyn isn’t stopping there. Every penny she earns for writing about dogs in need is donated right back to the cause. According to a recent email with her editor, Ellyn has plenty more “urgent dogs with incredible stories” that she plans to share via BarkPost.

From the looks of the pictures and videos posted by Kaigan’s ARK, it seems like Coffee is yet another success story for Ellyn. He’s been permanently adopted, and is loving his forever family. Coffee is well on his way to becoming the happy-go-lucky boy the Mercer County shelter staff fell in love with!

Ellyn Kail is incredibly humble when it comes to her role in helping dogs. She insisted that we also give a shout out to the equally deserving shelter staff, rescue workers, and volunteers all over the world who make a difference every day by saving one animal at a time.

Featured Image via Kaigan’s ARK/Facebook and Mercer County Animal Shelter

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Written by: Dina Fantegrossi

March 16, 2016

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