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BY Diane Blankenburg For RGJ.com

Most of us who work in the animal welfare field are drawn to this field because we have an affinity for helping beings that cannot help themselves, whether it’s children, elderly people, or animals. But many people, whether in this field or not, feel something extra special about helping the most downtrodden.

Yesterday, I watched a You Tube video posted on the RGJ Mostly Dogs blog about Oogy, who was used as bait in a dog-fighting ring and left to die. He was saved by Larry Levin and his family, who fell in love with him instantly, in spite of wounds that left his head deformed. His body was far from perfect, but his loving spirit was strong.

This video made me reflect on my own experience with the “imperfect” dog. Three and a half years ago, I was new to Nevada Humane Society and had just moved to Reno with my two black Labrador retrievers. I have a thing for all animals but especially labs.

A staff person was walking a cute yellow lab by my office and my first, and typical, inclination was to give him a big hug. He clung to me like I was his life preserver.

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