Maus approached the abandoned dog cautiously. It was chained up, but he didn’t know what its temperament was like. However, the pit bull didn’t move at all as he came closer, and that was when Maus saw the note. The message answered some questions – and raised many more.
Although he’s originally from Wisconsin, Eric Maus currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, as a screenwriter. He also has another vocation in his spare time that relates to another of his life’s passions. To be more specific, Maus moonlights as a dog walker.
Among the dogs Maus exercises are two called Gouda and Lily, whom he was responsible for on September 17, 2018. If it wasn’t for their walk, then Maus would never have made the emotional discovery that subsequently went viral. The event itself actually took place in Prospect Park.
In Brooklyn, Prospect Park is second only in size to Marine Park, complete with its own watercourse and ravine. There are also areas reserved for local nature conservation, so it’s a picturesque place for walks. But what Maus found on the park grounds wasn’t part of the local fauna.
Maus recounted the events of that day to The Dodo in September 2018. “When I was walking up to the waterfall, across the bridge, I saw this really big, chubby pit bull tied to the tree,” he said. The odd thing was that the dog was alone.
“I looked around,” Maus continued, “and I called out to her, ‘Hey, where’s your owner?’” His shout went unanswered, though, and there was no sign of the pit bull’s human. That’s when the dog walker realized this was no normal situation.
When he suspected someone had abandoned the dog, Maus knew he couldn’t just walk away. With that in mind, he decided to move closer to the animal, although he did so cautiously. Who knew what she’d been through, or how she’d react to a stranger?
To Maus’ relief, the large dog made no aggressive motions and instead just watched as he approached. She actually seemed very friendly, the dog walker recounted. “The pit bull was being so sweet and so gentle; she was just lying there, tongue out, so cute,” Maus said.
Maus consequently felt more confident about his safety and took a closer look at the pit bull. A metal chain tied her to the tree, but something else also drew his attention. Someone – presumably the dog’s owner – had left a note attached to some hanging leaves.
The writer had used a Sharpie pen to jot a message down on a Catholic Charities flyer. At the top was the word “Mamas,” which Maus took for the dog’s name. The rest of the tear-jerking note hinted at the kind of life Mamas must have had.
The words read: “Take me home. I’m a great dog. I’m seven years old. Don’t let my size scare you, I’m sweet.” That was the only information the writer left, and it would seem Mamas’ owner cared for her. It was a mystery, then, why they abandoned the dog.
Now that he knew no one was coming for Mamas, Maus couldn’t just leave her chained up alone. “I didn’t know what to do, but I wanted to help her,” Maus told The Dodo. “Prospect Park isn’t a good spot for a dog to be alone.”
The dog walker consequently hit up social media to see if anyone could lend a hand. Sure enough, just a few minutes later, Maus’ post had already received many replies. One generous reader even offered to come collect both the OP and Mamas to take them to a shelter.
Maus took the kind soul up on their offer, and they headed to the local shelter together. Unfortunately, though, it was hard going for Mamas. She was a big dog and carried a little bit of extra weight. The pit bull had another potential health issue as well.
Momas’ rescuer observed that the dog had blood in her urine, which potentially indicated that the animal had a bladder infection. That must have been painful for her, and it made walking even harder. To top it all off, her previous owner had left her without water, so dehydration may well have been a factor as well.
The humans took Mamas to the local Sean Casey Animal Rescue (SCAR) center. SCAR is a not-for-profit group dedicated to rescuing unfortunate animals. What’s more, it’s also a no-kill set-up, so they don’t euthanize healthy residents there.
The SCAR center thankfully had space for Mamas and as a result, the staff there agreed to offer her a place. Maus described how arriving at the shelter seemed to perk Mamas up. “When we took her out of the car, it seemed like she was ready,” he recalled.
“She basically jumped out of the car,” Maus continued, “which was a really good sign. She knew that she was safe.” Aside from her bladder and weight issues, veterinarians found Mamas to be generally healthy. All that remained was for her to find a forever home.
“[She’s] a total sweetheart, with big brown doe-y eyes,” Maus explained; “She’s just a happy dog.” Hopefully she’ll find a loving home soon, but until then, she’s in good hands. A SCAR shelter spokesperson told The Dodo that Mamas was adapting nicely.
“She’s settling in well and she likes everybody and everything,” the SCAR representative said of the pit bull. If it wasn’t for Maus, who knows where Momas would have ended up. Such a wonderful dog deserves a loving home; now she’ll get that chance thanks to the kindness of strangers.