Paralyzed Puppy Drags Herself Across Miles Of Treacherous Terrain, Then Spots Researcher’s Camp.

Poppy, a 7 month old puppy, was born in a remote region of Botswana on the edge of an elephant preserve filled with the giant pachyderms but also lions, hyenas and other top tier predators.When Poppy was very young, a terrible injury left her without the use of her back legs.

In what could have only been a twist of fate, naturalist Susanne Vogel and her team of researchers were studying an elephant population in the remote park where Poppy was born when they found her dragging herself towards their camp.


“She came crawling — literally crawling, because her back legs were completely immobilized — into our research camp,” Vogel told The Dodo. “She was unable to walk, but full of love and seeking help.”


“Her eyes pulled us in immediately,” Vogel said. “They are huge, imploring, and sparkling with life. She bursts with the sweetest spirit, and we could see that clearly, despite the desperate condition she was in.”


“The camp is in a remote region, filled with elephants, but also lions, hyenas and other predators,” Vogel said. “Poppy had somehow made it to us, emaciated and soaking wet from the rain.”


The nearest veterinarian was 8 hours and a ferry ride away. After making sure that Poppy was stable, the team decided to wait a few days for the drive. Finally, three days later Poppy was seen by a veterinarian.


The vet put Poppy at around 7 months of age and confirmed that her spine had been crushed when she was very young. The vet was astounded that Polly had survived but wanted to help her regain strength before attempting a risky spine surgery.


“He said the chances were ‘slim’ she could make it through the surgery or recovery afterward,” Vogel said. “But she had so much life in her, and I knew we needed to honor her will to live and the hard fight she had already fought to find us and stay alive. I couldn’t agree to euthanize her.”


Poppy is still waiting on her surgery, but she is gaining strength and confidence every day. Vogel and her team still check in on Poppy whenever they have the chance, and are amazed by her sweet, strong and tireless spirit.


“She already has so many people all over the world who love her from a distance and are checking on her progress daily and are eager to see a happy outcome, namely adoption into a loving family,” Vogel said. “She will regain her ability to walk, or she will gain wheels to help her around. I think she has a bright future!”


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