Animals, they say, are natural healers. We all know of guide dogs that are trained to help people with disabilities. From blindness, to seizures and even depression, there is no denying that a furry friend on four paws can be that silver lining that one craved for. The following story is not any different. You might want to bring out the tissues for this one, for it is that heart-warming.
The parents of seven-month-old Grace Campos, who was born with a form of ectrodactyly, a deficiency that hinders the development of limbs, have adopted an eight-year-old Chihuahua, who suffers from the same syndrome. Veronica, Grace’s mother, christened him Fleetwood Mac, and says that she was introduced to Fleetwood, who flew in from San Francisco to Chicago (where the Campos’ live), thanks to a support group called the Umbrella of Hope.
Ectrodactyly, also known as split-hand/foot malformation (SHFM), is a rare congenital disorder that affects the development of limbs. The condition can be mild, moderate, or severe, depending on the number of affected bones and joints.
Baby Grace, in addition to her condition, was born with a cleft lip and a cleft palate. She has a cleft in both her hands and feet as well, with only two fingers and toes on each. Her cleft lip was corrected with surgery last year, and she is due for corrective palate surgery soon.
However, it looks like although Fleetwood felt at home at the Campos’s household from day one, baby Grace is taking her own sweet time to warm up to him.
According to mirror.co.uk:
“[Veronica said,] So far Fleetwood gets along really well with our other dog, Charlie. But he is still very unsure about Grace, seeming scared as she approaches. Probably because she crawls quickly and may come off as aggressive. We are teaching her to pet him gently a little at a time throughout the day. It was wonderful to be paired with Fleetwood who has the same condition.”
The family meanwhile, is glad to welcome Fleetwood, and have been showering him with love, attention, treats and not to mention loads of toys to play with.
Mirror.co.uk also reported:
“[A spokesperson from Umbrella of Hope said], having a daughter with the same condition made them sensitive to his needs. From the moment they met you could tell it was a perfect match, he forgot about us and knew that he was home – with his people.”
The Campos family is just one of many who have been helped by the Umbrella of Hope. Umbrella of Hope Rescue is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization in East Contra Costa County, California, which is funded, in large part, by donations from members of the community. They concentrate on the rescue, rehabilitation, and placement in forever homes of animals that are at risk of losing their lives in shelters.
This story actually happened in 2018. We wonder how Grace and Fleetwood are doing today. And yes. See, we knew you would need those tissues!