Patches is the most documented case of abuse that we’ve come across at Oscar’s Place. When he arrived on May 31st, 2021, he was unable to stand. So I (Ron) picked him up off the ground and laid him on a trailer and drove him straight to the UC Davis Veterinary Hospital. The vets told us that he was dying of starvation and would not make it, but they needed a name to write down on his medical charts. Because big patches of his skin came off onto my arms when I unloaded him from the trailer, I chose the name Patches.
Patches had gone so long without food that his body had started consuming itself for energy. His eyes were sunk into the back of his head, making him blind, and he was missing about 10% of his skin and 50% of his hair. That an animal could be treated so horribly by humans was unfathomable.
After being on an IV for several days, his body — miraculously — switched to converting carbohydrates for energy. He rebounded, and came back to Oscar’s Place for a very long road to recovery. He was skin and bones; we had to get weight on him and get his skin, hide, and hair to grow back. Unfortunately, his eyesight will never return due to the starvation that he suffered.
As Patches recovered, he became very loving and trusting of humans. When he was healthy enough, we had him castrated and seen by a dentist. They found that his tongue was completely severed on both sides, held together in the middle only by cartilage — indicating that he was a work donkey, pulling loads entirely too heavy for him. He probably wore a bit that was too small and never taken off (even to sleep). Patches was worked so hard that it literally ripped his tongue out and almost killed him. When he could no longer eat and began to starve, his previous owners dumped him at an auction for slaughter. Luckily, he ended up here.
Today, Patches lives a very happy life and is completely loved by many. When he recognizes the sound of our voices, his ears perk up and he walks towards us. The fact that Patches trusts humans again is a testament to his resilience, forgiveness, and love.
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