The Dog Liberator™

The Dog Liberator rescues abandoned dogs throughout the Southeast. Based in Central Florida, this non-profit organization fosters all of their dogs in a home environment. Founded in 2009, all dogs are fully vetted, spayed or neutered prior to adoption. The Dog Liberator focuses in rescuing the herding breed, which consists of Border Collies, Shepherds, Sheepdogs, Aussies, Collies, and Deaf/Blind Dogs.

A Very Special Collie is Coming Home

A Very Special Collie is Coming Home

My Journey with Chance – My first Rescue, written by Becky Salvoline

April 13, 2011

As an animal lover and advocate, and Mother to three furbabies of my own, I have a keen interest in helping all animals, any way that I can. An animal rescue site on Facebook had posted a plea for a severely injured Collie that had reportedly been attacked by wolves, or a pack of dogs. His picture was very difficult to look at, but I knew that I had to venture further into the posting. He needed my help.

As I started reading the description about Chance, and I found out where he was from, how old he was etc., I was very disturbed to learn that this poor, sweet dog had been left in this state for nine, count’em 9 days!!!!! How could someone leave their beautiful ‘pet’, so severely injured that he was close to death!!?? I had never seen anything like this personally, or known anyone who had. It was beyond my comprehension! Now I was angry.

As I read on, I discovered that he had been tied to a chain, in a dirty back yard full of feces and garbage, with no food, no shelter, and no water, presumably for his whole life! 5 long years without human touch, except for the back of a hand. 5 long years longing for someone to speak sweetly to him, but instead hearing just yelling, or worse, silence. 5 long years of not knowing what love was, and that he did matter, and that there were thousands of people who would love him. He needed to be saved.

I was happy to learn that a concerned citizen had been watching Chance, and keeping an eye on his condition, and had bravely decided to act. Thank God for her! The owner agreed to surrender Chance saying:

“I wished he would just hurry up and die.”

PARDON?? I also discovered that this man bred Collies, and that he had moved some of his other Collies to another property. I prayed that they were in a better state than this poor boy. I ventured on.

Although I was happy to know that Chance had been removed from his awful circumstances, I was also shocked, and stunned to learn that this posting had originated from Petfinder.  He was being held at T.R.A.I.N., in Paintsville, KY. They had categorized him as “Adoptable”! This poor boy with neck wounds so deep that you could see his spine was “Adoptable”?? Now I was angry again.
I knew that he was going to need special care, many surgeries, lots of medications, and a long recovery if he was to survive. He had a VERY long road ahead of him, and I was not even sure that he would make it. I immediately posted the original posting on my wall, shared it, and cross posted it, and began researching Collie Rescue groups in Kentucky. I live in Ontario, Canada, so it was difficult at first to know where to look, or who to trust with this sweet boy’s future. I would not give up.

I came across a rescue group called TriState Collie Rescue, and they helped Collies in Kentucky! I went to their website to check them out, and was quite satisfied that they would be a good rescue to contact. I posted Chance’s story on their Facebook page, and held my breath that they would respond. Within a day I was pleased to learn through their Facebook page, that Chance had been taken into their care, and that he would be saved!!! There are good people!

I immediately sent an email to them, asking if in fact they did have him in their care, and I received a wonderful response back from Martha Raymer at TriState Collie Rescue! She said that he was to be received into their care on the weekend, as long as he was okay for travel. I sent another email to Martha the following day, as I was anxious to know how Chance was doing. She once again responded to my email, stating that they received him into their rescue the night before, and that he was at their vets being treated. I could now breathe a little.

I checked in on Chance and his progress every day—oh who am I kidding—several times a day– via their Facebook page, and sent encouraging words to both Chance, and to his caregivers, and encouraged others with my mantra: “Say a prayer…..give what you can….helping one is better than none.”

It was a beautiful day when I learned that Chance was doing really well, and that he was now truly ready for adoption. I once again began posting, sharing, and cross posting Chance, trying my best to find him a forever home—one where he would be loved, honoured, respected and cherished. Not long after, I learned that a woman named Cyndy Sperber Doty had been approved to adopt Chance. I immediately went to her Facebook page to check her out—lol—I wanted to make sure that she was good enough for him!! I quickly became friends with Cyndy, and I am so happy that she and her family will be adopting Chance! They have a beautiful home, that reminds me of ‘Tara’ in “Gone With the Wind”, acres and acres for Chance to run around in, another beautiful Collie named Lady Arabela to be a sister to, and a whole lifetime of love to give to Chance. Knowing that he is safe and happy makes me happy.

It truly is a Rags to Riches story, and it has changed me forever. Chance inspired me to volunteer at my local Humane Society, and to create a community group on Facebook, called “S3 Animal Advocates”, dedicated to my three furbabies, Sadie, Sammy, and Summer, and to promote advocacy, awareness, wellness, respect and love for, and of animals. It will be used to network for animals–whether they have been abused, abandoned, lost, found, need to be fostered and/or adopted, or simply to celebrate their lives.

Thank you Chance… will never know how much you mean to me.

World—Welcome Chance, now lovingly renamed Rhys—meaning “ultimate strength”. Have a happy life dear, sweet boy.

I love you~Becky

Chance’s Adoption

It started with an email sent by Cyndy Doty asking me if her son could volunteer for us!  The answer was Sure!  Cyndy and her son Matthew came over and met my pack.  The moment Matthew walked through the door, he fell onto his knees and kissed my Lady Di.  We talked about my rescue, but for the weeks that followed all Matthew wanted was his own Collie.

Ironically, not long after that visit, my accountant called me and asked if I could please take his mother’s dog.  His mother had to move into a nursing facility that did not allow dogs.   I asked him what kind of dog, and he said a collie.  I didn’t believe him!  That night, he brought Kelly over, and sure enough she was a stunning collie girl!  At that time, Matthew was at summer camp, so Kelly’s adoption was a surprise.

After some routine grooming and a little bit of training, Kelly was transformed into Lady Arabela.  Cyndy has remained very active in our rescue, fostering, networking, advising, and being a friend.


Cyndy called me less than two weeks ago. There was an urgency and sadness in her voice.  She explained a horrible incident regarding a Collie named Chance. It turned my stomach. I didn’t know how I could help Tri-State Collie Rescue or Chance, so I asked our supporters to donate to his cause.

These photos are very graphic, but the beginning of Chance’s rescue was shared here on Facebook.

“This poor dog was found laying at the end of that chain and had been attacked by something.  Maybe cyotes or a pack of dogs..we arent really sure, but he wa in terrible shape. He laid at the end of his chain for approximately 9 days suffering after being attacked with his owner refusing vet care for him until a concerned citizen found him.”

Chance was placed under the care of  Tri-State Collie Rescue, located in Kentucky.  The moment Cyndy Doty shared the story and images with me, I issued a plea on Facebook for our supporters to donate to Chance’s recovery, and The Dog Liberator immediately donated, knowing first hand that every little bit helps.


When they found him, his owner said he didn't care and he could die there.


From the moment Cyndy saw Chance and read his story, she wanted to adopt him. Chance has recovered nicely, had his stitches removed, and is ready for transport.

It is with absolute joy to share with everyone that Cyndy has been approved by Tri-State Collie Rescue to adopt Chance, who will be called Rhys.

Rhys will recover from his abuse both physically and emotionally, he’ll receive a lot of love and attention, and join Lady Arabela in Ocala very soon.

We must take a moment to thank the doctors from Audubon Animal Hospital in Louisville Kentucky for Saving this dog’s life.

05/10/11 Transport Update: I issued a plea on Mother’s Day, seeing that we were not successful at getting Rhy out on a flight.  Much to my surprise, it was our own people who were stepping up to the plate!  Well, no not really, I am not surprised!  Khaz and Steve are meeting the Kentucky transport in Tennessee and Amy Benz is meeting Khaz in Atlanta to drive him all the way HOME to Ocala!  Now THAT ROCKS!  Thank you TDL Peeps for stepping in to help!

You can read the facebook comments by clicking here, and special thanks to the folks at Louisville No-Kill, Tri-State Collie Rescue and all of their volunteers!

May 13, 2011 Transport

As I review the brutal and graphic photos of Chance, they were taken April 13.  One month after his rescue, he is on his way home. Chance was transported from KY to TN by Charlene Cayton to our Khaz Brooks.  Khaz drove Rhys from TN to Atlanta, GA.  Here are a few transport photos, however, all of his photos can be viewed in his photo album on Facebook:  Chance spent the night with Khaz and Steve, and rested before the next leg of his journey.













05/14/11 Update:   Tomorrow Chance’s Journey will continue, but he is now called Rhys.  He will leave Atlanta with Amy Benz, and meet his new home in Florida.

05/15/11 Update:  View all of the awesome transport photos of Rhys on Facebook.  Updates and videos coming soon, I promise!

It was such a smooth transport.

While we waited for Rhys to arrive, we weren’t nervous or worried because our TDL Peeps were chauffeuring the pup!

Thank you all, and thanks to Megan who shared the joyous day with us!

As Promised! What a gorgeous day, great people, terrific friends, perfect lighting, perfect weather, a camera that works, and two dogs that were meant to be together! It doesn’t get better than this.


Kathy Keith meets Rhys
Welcome Home
I say hello to Rhys, and welcome









Obviously, from the video, we felt that Lady Arabela and Lord Rhys enjoyed each other’s company.  The video received a lot of comments and hundreds of followers were thrilled that Rhys had been adopted and was going to such a wonderful home.

Rhys stayed with me for a few weeks, until he was cleared by Dr. Oliver to be neutered, and while we were at it, we had his nails trimmed, and we gave him a gorgeous new smile. Rhys really needed to have his teeth cleaned!  The folks at Val-u-Vet Deltona rolled out the red carpet for Rhys.   They did an awesome job taking care of him.

Rhys had to wear the cone of shame for a few days, but today he’s just his normal bouncy self again! He enjoyed being pampered after surgery. He got several beef marrow bones and lamb & rice canned food was a bonus!   But the real bonus is we picked up the tab.  Once he recovered from his neuter, he returned to Cyndy’s but experienced some complications from his surgery.

June 9th Update:  A few weeks later, Rhys was returned to TDL.  In need of a lot more social skills, and with Tri-State Collie Rescue’s blessing, I worked with him daily.  Many were disappointed that Rhys was returned, but I was confident that he could be quickly rehabilitated. Oh sure, he was a handful!  Housebreaking, learning basic manners, and socializing him with other dogs.  After spending several weeks with me, he was later adopted by the Hattaways and is living Happily Ever After!  Click Here to read more about his new home!

7 thoughts on “A Very Special Collie is Coming Home

  1. I am available this week fo transport of Chance this week or Tuesday/Wednesday next week. Then I leave FL until the end of August.

    Put me on your list for transports between Ocala, FL and Orlando or Tampa, FL areas AFTER the 1st of September.

    Sheltie Mom

  2. Hello, i am the transporter who will be bringing Chance from Louisville to Chattanooga. I am so happy to be a part of this transport!

  3. I have tears in my eyes watching the video of Rhys’ homecoming. Thank doG for good people in this world and for good dogs who forgive us humans for the horrible evils some of us do.

    I can only wonder what Rhys’ former owner (aka sad excuse for oxygen use) would think if s/he saw where Rhys is NOW, the actual alternative to letting him die at the end of a chain.

    Rhys’ new home is a heaven for dogs. God bless his furever human family. GOD BLESS the RESCUERS, and thank you!

  4. This is a truly amazing and wonderful story. I too cannot stop with the tears for these wonderful dogs and still wonder what makes humans do what they do to animals.

    Thank you all for a wonderful story and such a happy ending, I wish they were all that way.

  5. What a wonderful video of Rhys and Lady Arabella romping together in Rhys’ new home. He deserves all the best after such a difficult first chapter in his life–now he will live the life all dogs deserve.

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