Starving dog dumped in field while pregnant finds home for Christmas

Amber at her new home for Christmas (Picture: Martin Phelps /Blue Cross / SWNS)

A pregnant golden retriever cruelly used for ‘backyard breeding’ has found herself a loving home just in time for Christmas.

Amber, just four years old, was found starving and alone in the middle of a field in Hye Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.

A dog walker stumbled on the poor pooch who was so fearful of new people that she fled every time someone approached her.

But Amber, too tired to run anymore, was taken to a vet by the walker for help and discovered she was suffering from sarcoptic mange.

The disease sees a parasitic mite burrow into the skin leaving it itchy and poor Amber had scratched and bit herself so much she was bleeding.

Amber was eventually brought to the Blue Cross’s Burford rehoming centre in March.

Animal welfare workers were stunned at the state they found Amber in (Picture: Blue Cross / SWNS)
Blue Cross believes Amber was used for ‘backyard breeding’ (Picture: Blue Cross/SWNS)

The animal welfare charity said: ‘We believe poor Amber had been used by backyard breeders and abandoned when it became clear that she and her unborn litter wouldn’t survive without vet intervention.

‘She’s likely to have had many puppies.’

Rescue workers were stunned when Amber arrived, finding her skeletal apart from her pregnant tummy.

Burford Centre manager Hannah Wiltshire said: ‘She was so thin. If you stroked her, all you could feel were bones. 

‘And her skin was so red and sore. She was bleeding from some spots where she had clearly just been biting and itching so much. 

‘We were so worried about her and her unborn puppies.’

Volunteers had to do day and night shifts to feed her pups as she was too weak to do so (Picture: Blue Cross/SWNS)
Thankfully within eight weeks, all her babies had found new homes (Picture: Blue Cross/SWNS)

Only days after she arrived at Blue Cross, Amber gave birth to eight puppies – and workers feared the worst, given how frail she was.

‘It was almost like she was just waiting to be in a space long enough to give birth,’ Hannah added.

Vets had to perform an emergency C-section to save the lives of Amber and her pups as their heart rates plummeted in the womb.

But the battle wasn’t over yet. Some 25 volunteers worked day and night to feed her eight pups as Amber wasn’t strong enough to.

Even though it was ‘touch and go’ at times, babies Bailey, Cider, Dougal, Holly, Kasper, Sasha, Theodore, Winnie and mother Amber all pulled through.

Eight weeks later, all of Amber’s pups went to loving homes – and not soon after did Amber herself get a second chance.

Elly Griffith, 38, and her husband Adam, 42, took Amber in after the death of their elderly golden retriever, Henry.

Amber was found suffering from a skin infection caused by a parasite in her skin (Picture: Martin Phelps/Blue Cross/SWNS)
Amber’s new owners said they can’t wait to ‘spoil’ her (Picture: Martin Phelps/Blue Cross/SWNS)

Amber now lives in their home with their two kids Sophie, eight, and Laurence, six, as well as fellow golden retriever Stanley.

Elly said: ‘We needed her and she needed us. We focused on that.’

‘We wanted a friend for Stanley after the sad passing of our other golden retriever. We have children, so we wanted to make sure Amber had a good temperament before we took her home,’ she added.

‘We thought she would be very scared after everything that had happened with her. I don’t know how but she is so good with people despite the horrible neglect she has had.

‘This criminal business can be as lucrative as drug dealing. It’s nasty stuff. We really want to spoil Amber this Christmas.

‘The kids love her, they love playing in the garden with her and we are all very excited for her first Christmas with us.’

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