A Celebration of the Beauty of Difference
Jun 22, 2015 | Jennifer Gonzalez
Team Achilles CT has a new mascot…an amputee dog named Maggie May! Maggie, like the
members of Achilles, knows the challenges that come from living with a disability. Her owner Mary O’Connell, an Achilles CT guide and volunteer, tells Maggie’s incredible story of triumph over adversity!
Maggie was rescued from a kill shelter by an organization called Sunshine Golden Retriever Rescue. Her leg was broken in six places. She was taken to a veterinary hospital, where staff there arranged to pay for the amputation of her leg. While it’s not clear what the cause was, abuse does not seem to be the case. Maggie has always been, and continues to be, friendly to both people and other animals.
Mary officially adopted her May 24th, 2014 following a stay with a foster owner. Mary credits Maggie’s foster “mother” Cheryl with further instilling love and care to Maggie. While Maggie’s true age is not known, Mary has decided to celebrate her birthday on May 24th, and predicts she is 7.
Mary’s love for her dog Maggie is matched by the love Maggie demonstrates toward Mary! They seem to celebrate each other’s strengths. Furthermore, Mary doesn’t let Maggie- an admitted “spoiled princess”, fall victim to her limb-limited status. Instead, Mary shares a brief story:
“….. I bought Maggie a little ramp so she could get on the couch herself instead of expecting me to pick her up all the time. No matter what I tried, she wouldn’t use it. Well, finally, I placed a bit of cheese- her favorite- on the couch and walked out the door. Looking in through the window, I saw that Maggie immediately scampered up the ramp to get her cheese. Now, she uses the ramp all the time.” It seems, we all benefit from “tough love” at times!
Maggie May loves squirrels, walks with her owner (on a leash or in her stroller), sitting on the deck watching sea birds, toast, Mary’s neighbor’s bunny Beanie, hanging out on the couch, attending doggie daycare a couple days a week, and people. And people (me included), love her!
Welcome, Maggie May, to Team Achilles CT. Thank you, Mary, for sharing her story and her celebration of difference with all of us in Achilles CT.