Georgia Veterinarian Andy Mathis found an unusual way to help nurse a rescue dog back to health: by enjoying his breakfast and morning coffee with the pup in her cage.
The dog, Graycie, would only eat in private, but with the help of Mathis — who ate from a dog bowl as well — she began to chow down alongside the man who saved her.
Mathis posted a video on Facebook on Feb. 13 of himself and Graycie eating together and jokingly titled it, "When you have no pancakes for breakfast..." The video, which has received more than 6.2 million views by Wednesday afternoon, is a milestone in Graycie's journey toward better health. Just two weeks prior she was emaciated at 20 pounds, dehydrated, and hypothermic with a temperature of 95 degrees. She was also anemic with a vaginal prolapse.
Mathis received a call on Friday, Jan. 29 from someone who found the stray dog, according to his Facebook post. They did not want to leave her but they also couldn't afford to treat her. After posting on Facebook for advice on whether he should euthanize the animal in pain or see if he could save her, Mathis decided to give her the best chance possible.
"She was going to need more help initially than I could do by myself, on a Friday night," Mathis posted on the Granite Hills Animal Care Facebook page. "She needs to go to the Vet Teaching Hospital, to be evaluated. Depending on what they say, putting her to sleep here, or putting her to sleep there, is the same thing basically. . . at least I gave her the best shot possible by getting her there."
Mathis took her to the University of Georgia Veterinary Teaching Hospital and his friends began fundraising for her through the American Veterinary Medical Foundation. They also named her Graycie Claire "spelled with 'gray' for her coloring, and a double name being Southern and all, " Mathis wrote.
Two weeks later, with the help of the doctors at UGA and Mathis, Graycie is on the uptick. She has gained weight and been able to relax. Her blood levels are slowly improving. Mathis has tracked her progress by posting photos on Facebook and the video of Mathis and Graycie eating together has also encouraged thousands of people to follow Graycie's recovery. More than 56,000 people "liked" the video on Facebook and more than 87,000 shared it with many commenting on their emotional reaction to the scene.
"Hopefully, she'll learn to trust people quickly, and be ready for a home and family very soon," Mathis wrote in one post.