35 pounds of fur

Lazarus is a seven year old Pyrenean Mountain Dog. For those seven years, the dog had been imprisoned in a barn, fed only occasionally. Lazarus had never seen the daylight or breathed fresh air, let alone been able to frolic around in the grass.

Neighbors alerted an animal rescue group because Lazarus's owner was terminally ill, and what little care the four-legged creature received had become less and less. But even to enter the barn, volunteers had to shovel excrement away from the door to get it open. What they then saw shook them to the core.

Among all the debris and filth was a dog that was hardly recognizable as such. The neglected dog's fur was hopelessly matted. One of the helpers, Jessica Kincheloe, cut a staggering 35 pounds of fur from the dog. Nervous at first, "he calmed down and seemed to realize because it was making him feel better," she reported.

Under the thick fur mat a completely new dog came to light! Lazarus was still quite wobbly on his feet when, freed from the load of heavy fur, he was able to tread on the grass for the first time in his life. "He was OK with the human touch but didn't seem familiar to it. He warmed up to us really quick," Jessica recalled.

Lazarus was brought to Big Fluffy Dog Rescue. He had a broken tail and a couple of tumors that will have to be carefully examined. He is being rehabilitated with a foster family in Virginia until he is ready for a loving, permanent home.

Finally, Lazarus is getting all the attention and love he deserves. How wonderful to see him happy again after all the suffering!