There is evil in this world.
No one will ever know who ripped Da Hei’s paws completely off. No one will ever know how it was done, or most bewilderingly, why. The 7-year-old Siberian Husky would not understand even if he were given these answers. He would only know, then as he does now, that someone hurt him, excruciatingly, and that he could not make it stop. That it seemed to go on forever, and that his only choice was to endure.
The cruelty exhibited in such an act defies our comprehension, just as it does Da Hei’s. The blackness of heart it requires is beyond the scope of civilized understanding.
When Da Hei was unceremoniously deposited at Dr. Liu’s vet clinic in Dalian, China, there was no time for reflection. Only action.
Dr. Liu worked quickly to cut away the festering flesh. He sawed through the rotting bone. It is unknown how long Da Hei had been in this state before being brought in. But he was here now. And Dr. Liu worked desperately to save him.
When it was all done, Da Hei survived. He was still a dog like any other, big in body and thickly covered in black and white fur. A kind face. An inquisitiveness of gaze. Just like any other dog, minus his missing feet.
There is evil in this world, but there is also good.
Not satisfied with just treating Da Hei’s horrendous wounds and nursing him back to health, Dr. Liu wanted more—to make Da Hei whole. The doctor contacted a prosthetics company based in Beijing. Despite having never manufactured prosthetics for a canine, the company was eventually able—after eight long months of hard work—to fashion four functioning “legs” for Da Hei.
Now, as physically whole as he would ever be, Da Hei began a new test of will. Learning to walk again.
It wasn’t easy. Picture a dog in socks on ice during an earthquake. There is a silliness to his stilted, lop-sided gait that’s more hop than stride. But there is also dignity in each awkward step he takes. As he careens across the sidewalk, only to plop down after finding just the right spot for a moment of rest, the smile on his face means only one thing.
There is also hope.
After helping Da Hei through his ordeal, from the initial horror when the extent of the dog’s injuries were revealed, to those first stumbling steps on new legs, Dr. Liu decided he wanted Da Hei in his life permanently.
In the wake of such a terrible, malicious tragedy, it seems a happy ending was indeed possible.
Da Hei had found his forever home.