Rescuing a life is always heartfelt, touching, and in the case of this story, unexpectedly momentous. This story begins with an unexpected find one morning – a malnourished Chihuahua under a truck. Rescuing her was not our heroine’s initial intention, but thank heavens she did. 

Discovering the Malnourished Chihuahua

One chilly morning, Cameron stumbled upon a sight that not many of us can live to stomach. Nestled under her brother’s truck was a fragile, malnourished Chihuahua looking bitterly cold and terrified. The small creature’s ribs visibly stood out under her thinning coat.

The malnourished Chihuahua when she was first discovered
The malnourished Chihuahua when she was first discovered

When I found her she was severely underweight, barely had any hair, open wounds were all over her body and her feet were so swollen and painful.

Cameron Johnson, on discovering the malnourished Chihuahua

It’s heartbreaking to realize that such a delicate creature could be in such distress. Even if we can’t immediately know what to do with them, the first instinct is to not let them suffer. And, that’s exactly what Cameron did. 

Despite the grim scene, she felt a deep pull to help. She brought the Chihuahua home, immediately reaching out to her local vet.

However, they were unable to see her that same day. So, Cameron took matters into her own hands.

The severely ill Chihuahua, resting amidst warm blankets
The severely ill Chihuahua, resting amidst warm blankets

She decided to start with what she knew was essential – food and water. Cracking open her pantry, she carefully prepared a small meal and placed a bowl of water next to her.

Aware of the frail dog’s possible fear, she watched from a distance as it timidly started to nibble at the food. It was clear that this was the first proper meal the Chihuahua had seen for a long while.

Once finished, it lapped up the water with equal fervor. Cameron then turned her attention to creating a comfortable space for the weary little creature.

The malnourished Chihuahua at the beginning of her recovery
The malnourished Chihuahua at the beginning of her recovery

She made a cozy bed from warm blankets on a chair in her living room, an improvised sanctuary where the underweight Chihuahua could rest undisturbed. The moment she set it down, the dog instantly curled up into a ball, settling down for a long overdue slumber. The exhaustion was evident – the Chihuahua didn’t even stir in her sleep.

From Diagnosis to Recovery 

Once she was admitted, her veterinarian performed a series of examinations, where they saw that she was severely malnourished. The vets diagnosed her with Demodex mange, which is a common parasitic skin disease often seen in dogs.

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Demodex mange is triggered by a type of mites that are usually harmless and live in harmony with their canine hosts. Issues arise when there is an overpopulation of these mites, leading to hair loss, redness, scaling, and secondary bacterial infections.

The rescued Chihuahua, wearing a pink shirt
The rescued Chihuahua, wearing a pink shirt

In severe cases – such as our protagonist’s – it can result in a considerable impact on the general health and well-being of the dog.

Apart from suffering from demodex mange, our furry friend was also positive for heartworm disease. Once a dog is infected with heartworm disease, these adult worms lodge themselves in their pulmonary arteries, the vessels leading from the heart to the lungs.

With time, they obstruct blood flow, causing heart and lung damage. This condition not only weakens the dog, but in worst-case scenarios, it can be fatal.

The poor Chihuahua was put on antibiotics, and it was now up to time, patience, and care to do the rest and aid in this little one’s recovery. Opting to be safe considering her unknown past, Cameron also had all her shots done. The pup was so exhausted that she slept almost instantly, keeping her new bed warm on a chair in her living room. 

The once-malnourished Chihuahua on her road to recovery
The once-malnourished Chihuahua on her road to recovery

I remember when I got her home from the vet she slept for almost three days straight. I slept on the hardwood floor next to her every night, just incase anything happened.

Cameron, on the critical condition the malnourished Chihuahua was in

A Journey Back to Health

And so, our journey began. Despite the hardships, she was a little ray of sunshine, brightening up Cameron’s days. She decided to call her Abby and welcomed the pup with open hearts to her family.

Funnily enough, Cameron notes that the blip in her recovery phase was her dislike of the clothes she chose to keep her warm.

The once-underweight Chihuahua was now getting her strength back, her hair growing in, opening her heart to new outfits, even if reluctantly so. 

Abby, the now-healed Chihuahua wearing a yellow raincoat
Abby, the now-healed Chihuahua wearing a yellow raincoat

The only challenge was keeping clothes on her while her hair was growing back! She was not a fan of my outfits! 

Cameron, on Abbie’s recovery

Besides nursing Abbie back to health, Cameron told us how it was heartening to see her getting along with her other dog, running around and playing without a care in the world – quite the contrast from their initial encounter under her brother’s truck.

Despite getting no assistance and taking Abbie’s recovery into her own hands, we’re sure that our heroine wouldn’t trade this journey for the world.

Abby with her tongue out, enjoying a day out on the beach
Abby with her tongue out, enjoying a day out on the beach

This malnourished Chihuahua’s recovery and her newfound joy for life must’ve certainly brought its own rewards. The silver lining? She is now heartworm-negative, completely recovered, and incredibly healthy!

A message I’d give to anyone that may come across an animal needing to be rescued would be that it is so worth it!

Cameron, on people who stumble upon animals in need

So, don’t hesitate, for each act adds to the chapters of unconditional love, selfless care, and profound transformations. Not just in their lives, but yours, too.

Abby, all smiles - after her successful treatment and recovery
Abby, all smiles – after her successful treatment and recovery


In conclusion, every animal deserves a chance at life and a good home. This tale of a malnourished Chihuahua, nursed back to robust health with tender care and patience, indeed highlights the transformative power of love and caregiving.

Abbie’s story serves as a reminder for us all of the incredible difference we can make in the life of another being when we extend a helping hand. So, help where you can, because you’ll never know when you get to be the hero in someone’s story.

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