Sometimes, you have to go out of your way to be a good Samaritan. You can give to one of your favorite charities or volunteer at a soup kitchen, for instance. Other times, however, the opportunity to do the right thing is thrust upon you, and you have to take it. It’s not always easy or convenient, but it’s crucial to seize the moment.
That’s exactly what one father and son duo realized while driving along a stretch of rural highway one day. They spotted something strange on the road—and they couldn’t bear to ignore it…
Bret Winingar and his son, Zach, often went on adventures together through the great outdoors. Still, Bret—a self-described lover of “mildly extreme sports”—could never have predicted for the adrenaline rush they’d experience during one fateful motorcycle ride.
Zach Winingar / Facebook
On a seemingly ordinary day, the father and son were enjoying a pleasant ride in Little Rock, Arkansas, when they spotted a strange object on the side of the highway. It looked worn and dirty, but Bret could tell even from a distance what it was: a pet crate.
Most people would just drive by without a second glance, but the two men didn’t hesitate. They promptly pulled over and realized that the crate had a giant hole in it. It seemed it’d been intensely chewed through by something that was desperately trying to get in—or out.
Knowing that any trapped animal could be dangerous, Bret and Zach approached cautiously. When they opened the door, they were stunned. Inside was a dog—and she was badly emaciated and hunched over from being locked in the cramped box for so long.
The men knew exactly what they needed to do. After speeding home on Bret’s motorcycle, they returned in their car with a giant bag of dog food—which the starving pup promptly devoured. This was only the beginning of their journey, though…
As soon as the dog hastily gobbled up as much of the food as she could, the father and son brought her into their car, where she would have more room to stretch out and be comfortable. Then, they headed home…
On the way back to their house, Bret and Zach decided to name the sweet pooch Charlie Bravo, or “CB” for short. Though she was clearly in bad shape—her ribs were protruding from her frail body—she was extremely lovable, even giving them kisses!
Once home with the rest of their family, Charlie Bravo received a much-needed bath. Her’s nails were so overgrown that they’d actually begun to grow back into her paws. Clearly, the pooch was neglected—and she needed medical attention, fast.
This kind of medical issue was severe and complicated enough that it could only be taken care of by professionals. Bret and Zach brought Charlie Bravo to the veterinarian as soon as they could. Thankfully, the veterinary team was happy to be able to help the sweet dog.
The veterinarian first carefully dressed the sores that had developed on poor Charlie Bravo’s paws. She estimated that the dog was about eight months old—she was just a puppy! Who would do this to such a young, loving dog?
Bret shared Charlie Bravo’s story online and it went viral. Then, the family started to receive a variety of donations from all over. Thanks to the generosity of their community, they were able to help pay for the dog’s growing medical bills.
But the donations didn’t stop coming. In fact, the family received so much support that they were able to pay it forward. After paying off Charlie Bravo’s veterinary bills, they donated the rest to various animal shelters in the Little Rock area.
It was impossible to tell just how long Charlie Bravo was kept in that crate, abandoned, starving, and without hope. The most important thing, though, was that she was finally in a safer, more loving place thanks to two good Samaritans…
After becoming so attached to Charlie Bravo, Bret couldn’t bring himself to give her up. She’d become a member of his family—and he decided to officially adopt her and make her a permanent, beloved fixture of his home!
Today, Charlie Bravo is a happy, healthy pup who enjoys nothing more than playing in the snow, not to mention all of the other perks that come from finally living with a loving forever family. It was a rough start, but she’s doing so much better now…
Bret and Zach weren’t the only ones who had a soft spot for Charlie Bravo. Everyone living in the house quickly warmed up to the little dog. Even the family’s other pets didn’t seem to mind sharing the spotlight with their new pal!
In fact, there was so much activity and energy in the house—especially since Charlie Bravo’s miraculous recovery—that Bret started to lovingly refer to it as the “Casa Del Whackos!”
The family had a grand total of four rescue animals in their home. They were considering starting their very own charitable foundation for other rescue animals who needed the kind of help that Charlie Bravo once did.
If their ambitious plan was a success, the family said they would call their new foundation “Charlie’s Angels.” Bret even set up a website for Charlie Bravo to allow people to donate to their efforts, too.
Charlie Bravo – The Motorcycle Rescue Dog Story / Facebook
This family knew the importance of setting aside inconvenience when it came to saving the lives of animals in need. They also recognized that not everyone can afford that. Hopefully, their fundraising site will help inspire people to be good Samaritans, just like them!
According to the American Humane Association, millions of pets each year are found in heartbreaking circumstances. Thanks to kind people like Bret and Zach, these pets can find loving families and get a second lease on life—just like Charlie Bravo did!
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