by: Carol Bryant
BlogPaws celebrates senior pets in August and we uncovered this story we are certain will touch the hearts of our community members and anyone who reads it.
Thankfully, an animal group from New York rescued the Great Pyrenees dog, who eventually found what seemed to be his forever home. RuthAnn Meyers of Colts Neck, New Jersey, drove to New York to adopt Mac. Still, all was not right in the world.
The Issues Continue
Mac experienced separation anxiety of a severe nature. After working with him and boarding him at the Purr’n Pooch Pet Resorts where he bonded with animal behaviorist and trainer Dick Palazzo, Mac began to blossom and was able to trust people.
Life threw a curve ball: RuthAnn, Mac's dog mom, developed an aggressive form of terminal cancer. She needed the help of Dick Palazzo to help find Mac a new home due to her illness. Dick agreed to take Mac, as he knew all of the issues this helpless pooch experienced.
Three years and three failed foster homes later, Mac found a home at the age of ten in an unexpected place. Grieving from the loss of their beloved dog, Bear Orsa, the Deraska Malinowski Family of Colts Neck, New Jersey drove to nearby Long Branch for a walk on the seaside boardwalk. Diane immediately agreed to foster Mac. After a week with the dog, the family formally adopted him. During the first few months in his new home, Mac suffered severe separation anxiety as expected by Dick, but he soon got into the rhythm of activities with the family and today is always by their side to enjoy life with them.
“The angel of the original owner was looking down on us because there is absolutely no reason this dog should be alive at this point,” Palazzo says. “To do the hurdles that he did—not only to stay alive but to go through so many phases of his life and now to a hero, is amazing.”
You see, Mac is severely arthritic and has a spinal condition that prevents him from climbing stairs. This past February, Diane and her kids were sleeping upstairs. At around 3 am, Mac appeared at the foot of Diane’s bed, barking loudly. He proceeded to the kids’ bedroom and stood firm. With husband, Richard, away on business, Diane got out of bed and immediately realized Mac made it upstairs.
More importantly, she went downstairs and found her home engulfed in smoke. Once gathering the kids and pets, Mac and the family exited to safety.
It was later revealed that a home heating system caused the fire and the fire alarm did not work on this particular evening. Mac’s astute senses, however, did.
“To this day, no one understands how Mac could have possibly made it up the stairs in his physical condition,” says Palazzo. “His actions were truly heroic and saved the lives of his family.”
“Our pets deserve good, enriched lives for however long they live. Senior pets like Mac especially play important roles in our lives. So many pets in shelters have a life’s mission,” said Diane Deraska Malinowski. “At the moment that Mac saved our family from the fire, Mac’s life mission was fulfilled and we thank Dick for allowing us to bring him into our lives.”
Mac was honored at the Sweet Summer Night Dessert Party celebrating Mac’s heroic actions and to help raise funds for unsung heroes in animal welfare and rescue.
BlogPaws salutes Mac and the Purr'n Pooch Foundation for Animals. We celebrate Senior Pets in the month of August and year round with the Be the Change for Pets: BlogPaws movement.