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Left for Trash, this ‘Valentine’ Will Surely Warm Your Heart

March 29, 2011

Castro Valley Forum

An Oakland garbage collector, on his rounds last February 14, was approached by a woman asking if the tiny shivering dog cowering in a box could be collected with the household rubbish. He took the two-year-old Maltese mix into his care and turned her over to the Pet Food Express store on Castro Valley Boulevard.

She had broken ribs and pieces of metal in her stomach,” explained Darcy Kost-Botelho of Castro Valley who works at the store and who serves as a foster parent to abandoned pets.

Pet Food Express contacted Dusty Paws Rescue of Castro Valley who brought the dog, newly named “Valentine,” to Redwood Animal Hospital where x-rays were taken and she received a digestive system “flush,” she was fed nutritious food, and was nursed back to health despite being severely malnourished. She also received a “makeover” including the removal of huge knots of unkempt fur and a desperately needed flea dip.

When I went down to see her I felt such a pang in my stomach.  She was infested with fleas, filthy and oh-so-skinny,” said Dusty Paws co-founder Diane Meranda. “Everyone at Pet Food Express should be thanked for their effort helping to save Valentine.”

Meranda and the 25 volunteers and nine foster parents with Dusty Paws have rescued 26 dogs and 5 cats this year placing all in caring homes.

Anyone interested in providing a good, safe home for Valentine or any other animal can visit or call Wayne Meranda at 510-886-8925.

By Robert Souaz

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