Odin, the Alaskan malamute, was ill-treated his entire life. He was rescued in October 2018 and looks like a completely different (and happy) dog now.
Breeding animals to sell them is an illegal business and most times breeders do not take care of the animals they 'use'. Animal cruelty is a problem that is seen across the world and it is hard to put an end to. It is something that needs to be stopped because the animals have never really caused any harm to us and do not deserve such treatment. In October 2018, a dog named Odin was rescued from a pair of breeders who had completely neglected to take care of him, along with several other dogs. The poor little dogs were chained outside throughout the day and many times, even all night.
They were completely ignored, weren't fed on time, cleaned, taken on walks regularly, or shown any form of affection. Odin was in a terrible state when was picked up by rescuers from Southern Pines Animal Shelter and Southern Cross Animal Rescue of Mississippi last year.
The rescuers knew that they needed to rush Odin to the vet as soon as they saw what condition he was in. Seeing as he hadn't lived for a single day in his life, they knew that he needed to be transferred to a loving foster home as soon as possible. When Odin’s then-foster mom, Sydney Schelkopf, saw him for the first time, she could hardly believe her eyes. As reported by The Dodo, she claimed that he hardly even looked like a dog when she first saw him. He was skinny and hairless, very much unlike the fluffy Alaskan malamute he was supposed to be.
“Poor Odin looked like he was taken straight out from a nightmare,” Schelkopf told The Dodo. “He was emaciated, almost completely hairless, covered in wounds, with cracked and broken teeth, and incredibly weak. He had a putrid smell to him from his horrible skin infections. Basically whatever could be wrong, was with this poor guy!” When Odin was brought into his foster home for the first time, he had no clue how to react or behave. He was never allowed so much freedom before, this was all very new to him. it seemed as though he was never allowed to be a dog and did not know what it felt like to roam around and be carefree.
“I honestly don’t know if Odin had ever been inside a house before,” Schelkopf said. “He sniffed around the whole house and kept looking back at me like, ‘What’s the catch?’ For weeks after I got him, he would just lay in a spot. I couldn’t get him to play with toys or act like a ‘normal dog.’” She claims that it did take the poor Alaskan malamute some time to get used to things. Initially, it seemed as though he felt like there was a catch to everything he did but slowly started to realize that people actually loved him and wanted him to be free.
Once Odin got comfortable at his foster home, there was no question of leaving. Initially, the plan was that Schelkopf would only help in fostering Odin and he would then be put up for adoption. However, he made it very clear that Schelkopf's home was his forever home. “The second night I had brought him home, he was brave enough to come to bed with me,” Schelkopf said. “He climbed onto the bed and just threw his bony body on me, looked up at me with such heartfelt eyes and sighed in such a loving embrace. I knew Odin had finally found where he needed to be.”
Odin had been a foster failure in the past. However, Schelkopf didn't mind this at all and neither did the rescuers. She had learned how he behaved and had finally settled in. Now, the focus shifted on improving his health. When Odin arrived, he looked like was abused every single day but with a lot of love and care, things soon turned around. He started looking like a furry little pup. He started to act and look confident. It was as though he were a completely different dog now. He finally started looking like an Alaskan malamute.
However, Odin still has a few health hurdles to overcome but with the new family he has been introduced to, this wasn't a problem. Schelkopf believes that Odin will be completely fine and healthy (physically and mentally) in no time. She and her family are actively working on Odin's health. Odin is now allowed to run around and do as he pleases. He is fed well, and regularly taken on walks and allowed to go out to the yard and play every day. His new mom also plans on taking him on many adventures as soon as he recovers completely.
“He is currently undergoing heartworm treatment which has been a huge battle,” Schelkopf said. “We have our good days and our bad days. Once all our heartworm treatment is done, we are going to have some corrective surgery on his teeth. Unfortunately, a lot of them are in bad shape, and we are going to do everything we can to get them as best as we can!” With the right treatment and care, Odin should be completely healthy in a matter of weeks. Dogs need to be let free and allowed to play because they have the tendency of spiraling down. That's not a happy picture, now, is it?
We now know that he is going to get better. Well, in the meantime, Odin loves lazing around and cuddling with his new mom. He even has siblings whom he loves to play with. It appears as though he has fit into the family really well. He is pampered so much that now he gives his opinion on absolutely everything. Odin has finally started to live life like a happy dog again, something he has missed out on all of his life.
The rescuers have not spoken about what action was taken on the breeders who kept him and several other dogs in captivity. However, people hope that have been given a very long and strict sentence. Breeding and animal cruelty should not be tolerated.