Friday, July 31, 2009

Happy Endings: Bella

In March 2009, BRAT received into care a 1-year-old black and white female basenji who had been rescued from the street of Nashville, TN, by some “good Samaritans.” They were aware that she needed more care than they could provide, and after several unsuccessful efforts to locate her owners, they contacted BRAT. The finders sent pictures and described what they thought was a congenital defect of her right rear leg.

Bella was picked up by a BRAT foster family, Dawn and Allen Adkinson, who immediately took her to their vet. The "defect" was diagnosed as a severely fractured tibia which would require expensive orthopedic surgery to repair. The x-rays showed that the top of the tibia was broken in two places and would require pinning. Even after the surgery, Bella’s fractured leg would most likely remain shorter than the left rear leg; however, it would at least heal and not remain painful. The cost estimate for the surgery, even with BRAT’s rescue discount, was a whopping $1000 - $1500.

Even though this was a major financial expenditure for one small dog, it just didn’t seem right to turn our backs on her, so the BRAT board decided to appeal to you, our members, and requested help for Bella. Thanks to the generosity and loving kindness of scores of BRAT members, the money was raised, and little Bella had her surgery.

After nearly two months recuperating at the Adkinson’s, Bella was ready to be adopted by May 2009. Linda and Earl Henning saw her on the BRAT website and just fell in love with her, and knew that they could provide a loving forever home for her. After many communications with the BRAT coordinators and Bella’s foster family, she was adopted and moved to her forever home.

Bella now happily resides in Jackson, TN, and spends her days romping around her very own yard with the Henning grandkids, whom she thinks of as her very own doggy playmates. She also gets to play with real basenjis from time to time, whenever the Hennings’ daughter comes to visit from Nashville with her two basenji boys. Bella is Linda’s early morning and late evening walking companion, her Frisbee player, and her example of meeting life head on with puppy exuberance. With a family life that never stands still, the Hennings know firsthand how great it is to have a friend whom you can talk to, be quiet with, and who accepts you as you are.

A special note from Linda & Earl:
“I appreciated the professionalism and thoroughness of the adoption process, being able to know so much about each dog from the website, and being able to be in contact with the foster family before, during and after the adoption. This was extremely helpful. Thank you BRAT, thank you especially to Bella's foster parents, and also to all those who give of their time and effort, whether it is to foster or to transport.”


  1. What a wonderful happy ending!! I'm so full of joy to hear this and was very concerned about Bella, as so many of us were. Thank you for letting us know, Mike.
    --Susan, Buddy and Ashley in MD

  2. We want to thank every one who helped Bella get the care she needed and deserved! We like what BRAT is about and really enjoy being that family that may be needed and called upon when the there is a need. And of course right after Bella, Lucky came to our attention needing the same type of treatment. We are pleased to say she is almost ready to join the Basenji games with our 3 but she is not there yet, but is on her way to a happy and healthy life, thanks to the people who find and take the time to find out how to get these dogs what they need. Bella, We Love You and Miss you but we know your happy. Thank Mike and Thanks BRAT!

    Allen & Dawn Atkinson