5 min read

Blind Dogs Survived 12 Years Of Neglect By Never Leaving Each Other's Side

"Wherever they are, they always sit right next to each other so that they’re touching."

It was the worst case of neglect rescuers at NorCal Bully Breed Rescue had ever seen.

Infested by fleas and ridden with untreated skin infections, Chase the Chihuahua and his cocker spaniel companion, Buddy, could barely stand up due to the pain.

After years of being kept inside a house with little attention or care, Chase had lost all of his fur and was living with skin so red and swollen that he didn’t even resemble a dog. Buddy’s fur was deeply matted and caked with years-old urine and feces, which caused sores on his body. They were both blind and almost completely deaf.

senior dog rescue
Chase's skin was visibly swollen and irritated. | Kellie Murphy

Still, the 12-year-old friends had each other.

Buddy and Chase were surrendered to a Martinez, California, shelter in late October because their owner was moving. Since they would likely be euthanized at the public shelter, the dogs were transferred to a foster home through NorCal Bully Breed Rescue.

Rescuers instantly started treating the dogs’ various health conditions, from their fleas and skin infections to intestinal parasites and overgrown nails. They’re also helping them recover from nutritional deficiencies from years of being fed a low-grade diet.

senior dogs rescue
Chase and Buddy snuggling at their new foster home | Kellie Murphy

Despite the odds stacked against them, Chase and Buddy’s foster mom, Kellie Murphy, told The Dodo they have nothing but love for people.

“They’re surprisingly very trusting of us and incredibly sweet,” Murphy said. “They’re happiest when cuddled on someone’s lap — probably because they never had that. It’s a comfort for them because they can’t see or hear.”

Chase was also diagnosed with lymphoma, which he’ll be treated for over the next six months. But in the short time they’ve been in Murphy’s care, the dogs have already started getting stronger each day.

For now, the two senior friends are living comfortably with Murphy’s family, including her husband, 2-year-old daughter and their Chihuahua-daschund mix. New sweaters, warm beds and a yard to explore are a welcome change for them — but still, even in the safety of their new home, they don’t wander too far from one another.

“They’re super attached to each other,” Murphy said. “Wherever they are, they always sit right next to each other so that they’re touching. If we go to take one of them outside, the other will scream until his friend returns.”

Meanwhile, local law enforcement is conducting an ongoing animal cruelty investigation of the dogs’ original owner.

senior dogs rescue
Chase and Buddy hanging out in their new bed and crate | Kellie Murphy

“If all goes well over the next few months, we’re hoping they’ll be adoptable soon,” Murphy added. “If not, they can stay here with me as long as they want.”

To support the ongoing medical care of Chase and Buddy, you can make a donation to NorCal Bully Breed Rescue.