Little 'Walrus' Dog Left At Shelter In Garbage Bag

“Animals that come from the most horrific situations are often so sweet, and they’re so kind to people” ❤

No one could believe the dog was still alive.

The Shih Tzu was wrapped in a garbage bag when two people brought her into the shelter run by Richmond Animal Care and Control (RACC) in Virginia last week. The dog was in a horrible state — she was missing most of her hair, and her skin had an infection that hadn’t been treated for years.

Hairless shih tzu in plastic bag

“They apparently found her in this plastic bag behind an old church on the south side of the city,” Christie Chipps Peters, director of RACC, told The Dodo. “They picked her up and brought her to the shelter.”

Peters wasn’t at the shelter at that time, but the staff member on duty sent Peters a text to let her know what was going on.

“We’re so angry that this happened, but we’re also super grateful that she’s here and we can treat her and she’s alive,” Peters said.

Rescued dog wrapped up in blanket

The staff immediately started treating the dog, now named Annabelle, for her skin infection, as well as an upper respiratory infection, conjunctivitis and problems with her teeth.

“She’d gotten no medical care at all, so we’ll do whatever we can to help her,” Peters said. “Her lungs sounded a bit spotty, so she’s on some great antibiotics that will help kick everything that needs to be kicked into the right direction.”

Animal control officer holding rescued Shih tzu

“She has no hair, so she kind of really does look like a walrus,” she added. “But she’ll start growing hair back slowly, and she’ll start looking much more like a dog. When she gets hair, maybe we’ll decide that she’s a Pekingese-Shih Tzu mix.”

Despite everything Annabelle has been through, she’s the “happiest, sweetest dog,” according to Peters.

“She wags her tail,” she said. “We can do anything to her when she gets her baths and her treatments. She’s so sweet and kind, and it’s always a reminder to us that animals that come from the most horrific situations are often so sweet, and they’re so kind to people. We’re always inspired by their resiliency.”

Hairless shih tzu sitting on blanket

Annabelle, who’s thought to be about 5 years old, is mostly resting right now, but she enjoys meeting new people and going for walks.

“She’s kind, she’s happy and her spirit is very light,” Peters said. “She’s not sad or scared, and she’s game for everything.”

Annabelle will stay at RACC while she recovers, but the shelter is already taking adoption applications for her.

Hairless Shih Tzu wrapped up in blanket

While RACC is mainly concentrating on helping Annabelle get better, they’re also trying to investigate what happened to her, so they’re asking the public to come forward with any information they might have about her.

“It really just takes one person coming forward with information if they know something,” Peters said. “This can help us move forward with a conviction for cruelty of this dog.”

If you have information about Annabelle, or if you’re interested in adopting her, you can contact RACC.