Matilda, the Bat-Eared Puppy, Was Almost Put Down For Being “Overexcited”

By: Nathan Grant

Honestly, she’s so cute and she’s young and she’s got these big old bat ears. I thought someone would take her immediately.

Jessica Graaf, co-founder of Philly Bully Team, and her husband rescued two dogs from Animal Care & Control Team of Philadelphia (ACCT Philly.) On their drive home with the two dogs in tow, Jessica received an email from ACCT.

Source: Philly Bully Team

A Heartbreaking Email

The email described a pit bull mix named Matilda. Matilda arrived at the shelter a couple of days before and was only ten months old. Jessica had seen the pup at the shelter while she was just there.

“I thought she would get scooped right up,” Jessica told The Dodo. “Honestly, she’s so cute and she’s young and she’s got these big old bat ears. I thought someone would take her immediately.”

Source: Philly Bully Team

ACCT’s email shared some bad news. Apparently, despite Matilda’s young age and good looks, she had been time-stamped. This meant she had only 48 hours to live before being euthanized.

The email went on to state, “Matilda is a spunky girl that came to ACCT as a stray. This little pupper is having a hard time adjusting to the kennel environment and has since developed a severe leash biting behavior. When you take Matilda out, she becomes overstimulated [to] the sights and sounds of the shelter. When she gets outside, Matilda begins to leash bite out of overexcitement. She can be redirected with treats.”

Source: Philly Bully Team

Jessica was taken aback by the email.

“Overexcitement, leash biting … these are typical behaviors for a dog her age, especially if she was dumped at the shelter,” Jessica explained to The Dodo. “There’s a good chance she was never properly trained or socialized.”

Source: Philly Bully Team

Jessica, being familiar with ACCT, knew that the weet pup had only been time-stamped because of the shelter’s overcrowding. The summer months were always packed.

“Summer is the worst time of year for shelters and rescues,” Jessica said. “We have a lot of owner surrenders. When people go on vacation, instead of finding accommodations for their dogs, oftentimes they’ll just dump them at the shelter. Adoptions are also down because people don’t want to commit to adopting a new pet when they have a vacation planned.”

Source: Philly Bully Team

They Turned the Car Around

Jessica knew she had to step in.

“I asked my husband, ‘Do you want to go get her now?’” Jessica said. “And he said, ‘Yes, absolutely.’ So we just turned around, and went back and got her.”

They turned the car right around and, once at the shelter, loaded Matilda into their car.

Matilda knew she was saved. Once home, Matilda showed just how sweet and loving she could be.

Source: Philly Bully Team

“All she wants to do is be right by your side,” Jessica said. “She’s very snuggly. When we got her home … she was sleeping on me on the couch. She was probably so exhausted from being in that [shelter] environment, and she had a really long day.”

After getting some much needed rest at her new, temporary home, Matilda showed her energetic, fun side.

Source: Philly Bully Team

“She’s learning fetch and she knows how to sit,” Jessica said. “She comes when you call her and she already knows her name. She could definitely use some basic training classes, but she’s a very lovely dog.”

Source: Philly Bully Team

Looking for a Sweet, Fun-Loving Dog?

Jessica and her husband are looking for a foster family and eventual adopters for this sweet, adorable pup. They believe that “she would love a home with another dog and a really active family.”

Be sure to share precious Matilda so that we can help find her forever home!

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