She saw a photo of a dog so horrifying, hairless and emaciated, she knew she had to do something about it!
Warning: Some people may find photos in this article disturbing!
Valia Orfanidou has rescued many cats and dogs in her city of Athens, Greece. An active member of many animal rescue groups she has also helped many other stray animals find their forever homes. One day in November of 2014 she saw a photo’s of a dog online that left her so horrified she couldn’t get it out of her head.
The misery this dog was suffering was so evident to see, completely hairless it was starving, its ribs clearly defined on its emaciated body.
Valia did some detective work and discovered the dog lived close to a railway station some 70 miles outside of Athens. She formed a small animal rescue group with some friends and set out to track this desperate dog down.
Arriving at the railway station they soon found him, at the end of his limits he could barely walk and was suffering from contagious mange. Full of grief Valia thought it unlikely he would last too much longer.
“We were pretty sure we had taken him off the streets just to offer him the chance of a dignified death,” Valia wrote underneath a YouTube video about the rescue. But when she came to know that the dog’s disease was curable, she was overjoyed. “When the vet told me that, I honestly laughed. I couldn’t believe it,” she told the Huffington Post. “And then I became impatient. I wanted to see him recover.”
Bundled up to keep him warm Valia took Billy home and made him the very first bed he had ever lied in. He had his own room in one of her bathrooms, and as time went by he gradually began to heal.
“I foster a lot and volunteer at dog shelters in Athens but never really watched a dog transform step by step before my eyes,” she said. “It was hard to let go of Billy because he and I shared a miracle,” Valia said.
As his mange began to disappear so his fur began to grow back and he began to put on weight. Valia found it hard to believe she was looking at the same dog!
In just two months, Billy transformed into an adorable dog that anyone would be proud to own, and Valia knew that it was time for Billy to leave her.
When Emma, a Greek lady living in Switzerland, requested to adopt Billy, Valia agreed knowing she would give Billy a wonderful home. At the airport, Billy and Valia said goodbye. Valia relates how much she felt for Billy and how hard it was to part with him, so Valia and Emma kept contact via Skype, email, and the phone.
You can watch billy’s rescue story here:
Then one day in December 2015, Valia and Billy saw each other again. It was Christmas, and Emma was spending it with her family in Greece. Valia was warmed at the sight of seeing such a happy Billy with caring owners that simply adored him.