Staff Watches Crying Vet Forced To Give Dogs Up, Looks Closer And Realizes He's Been Set Up

Blindsided

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

The five words blindsided him completely. Confused, it dawned on him that they weren't going to accept his money. Despair shook through him as he thought of his two beloved dogs, who he would never see again. He raised his hands to his eyes, his mouth an "O" of disbelief, and started to cry.

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Surrender

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

Veteran 58-year old James Pack lived in Newark, Delaware. After he suffered a life-threatening heart attack, he knew that he couldn't look after his pets anymore. His family and friends didn't have the means to help, either, so he only had one heartbreaking option left. He would have to surrender his dogs to the First State Animal Center and SPCA. James Pack's life as he knew it was about to change forever.

Blaze And Bailey

Delaware State News

Pack's dogs, Blaze and Bailey, were two labrador-pitbull mixes that he had adopted from two separate litters when they were just 8-week-old puppies. Three years later, tragedy struck, and the pair were taken by animal control for safekeeping while Pack was in the hospital recovering from a massive heart attack. Pack didn't know just how hard he would have to fight if he ever wanted to see them again.

Rehoming

Facebook/Chris Malec

Dogs at the center are usually kept for 5 days before being put up for adoption, but Blaze and Bailey had been there for 20 when the staff received the news that Pack may not overcome his illness. So they decided to follow their protocol and proceeded with the process of rehoming the pair. The prognosis for Pack looked grim.

Checking Daily

Facebook/Melissa Eagle

Pack's surgery was further complicated after he got an infection, and this left his left side temporarily paralyzed. But Pack's fighting spirit held strong -- the thought of being reunited with his beloved dogs kept him going throughout his 90-day stay in the hospital. Lindsay Carrothers from the Camden SPCA said: “He didn’t have anybody to care for his two dogs, so he had to surrender them.” Carrothers also explained that even though Pack had difficulty talking, he would call the center daily to check up on Blaze and Bailey.

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Second Chances

Facebook/Melissa Eagle

The pair of dogs proved to be exceptionally well-behaved, and Carrothers even commented on how Pack had trained them "to a T". But, despite being model pets, there was very little interest from the public and the center was starting to grow worried that they wouldn't find suitable homes. They were then moved to the SPCA's adoption center at a PetSmart store in Dover. But would the pair have more luck there?

Visit

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

Then, the center got the news. Pack had started to recover from his long illness, and there was only one thing on his mind: he wanted to visit his beloved dogs, and he thought he would be allowed to take them home. When he arrived, Blaze and Bailey couldn't contain their happiness, bounding to Pack and covering him with doggy kisses. The staff was in awe of their display of affection, and Pack stated that he would like to take the dogs home with him, but when he heard the bad news, his face fell.

A Blow

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

As the dogs had been surrendered and had been put up for adoption, Pack was required to pay a fee of $210 to reclaim them. When he heard the news, his heart sank. He didn't have the money. But, determined, Pack left and vowed to return with the money -- even if he had to sell his car for scrap to do so. Then he gave the center his last $40 as a deposit, and went on his way.

Despair

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

Pack was not able to raise the money in time, so he returned to the center the next day, crestfallen. He went to the front counter and asked if he could see his dogs one last time. Despair gripped him -- what would he do without his beloved pets? They had become part of his family and he loved them dearly. Then, Lindsay Carrothers handed him his deposit back, and the reality of the situation hit him like a ton of bricks. But what she said next left him reeling.

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A Plan

Animals Australia

Melissa Eagle worked at the center and knew of Pack's plight. So, she decided to do something unbelievable for the man. She suggested that the staff of the center all pitch in to raise the funds needed for Pack to reclaim his furry companions. But the surprises didn't stop there.

Rallying

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

News about Pack soon came to Chris Malec, and she decided to pay the adoption fee for Blaze and Bailey outright. Meanwhile, the other members of the team were collecting for food, toys, treats, and giftcards. Malec, Eagle, Carrothers, Linda Palmer, Shannon Garrett, Laura Allen, Melinda Santiago and her husband, all rallied to give Pack the once-in-a-lifetime surprise. But that wasn't all they did.

Donations

Gofundme

A GoFundMe account was also created by the center's staff for Pack, and his endearing story quickly went viral. They had already managed to raise half the funds needed in just 24 hours! Soon, donations were pouring in from all around the world, and the amount quickly grew an amazing $7,035 -- which was $2000 more than their target.

Disbelief

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

The moment when Carrothers hands back his deposit leaves Pack devastated, as he misunderstands what she's trying to tell him. He thinks that he can't reclaim Blaze and Bailey, and his face crumples. Then, Carrothers assures him that his furry family will be reunited with him -- and Pack's look of disbelief was all caught on camera.

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Tears

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

Then, the penny finally drops, and Pack starts to cry. He realizes what an enormous act of kindness the staff and the community has done for him and his dogs, and he breaks down. Tears of relief pour down his cheeks. Finally, after a long and hard road, Blaze and Bailey will be back where they belong -- in Pack's loving arms.

Reunited

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

Blaze and Bailey are then brought out to their rightful owner, and the tearful reunion leaves all who witness it floored. Pack's love for his animals is evident, and a piece of his life has finally been restored. And it was the generosity of all who rallied for Pack and his pets that made it all possible.

Gifts

Facebook/Lindsay Donovan

Pack kissed his hand and lifted it towards the sky, saying, “This is unbelievable. Thank you!” Carrothers commented on the touching reunion: “I don’t think there was a dry eye.” After Blaze and Bailey had calmed down, Pack took their leads in his one hand -- the other hand was laden with goods that were donated for his dogs.

Inspiring Others

Facebook/Lindsay Donovan

The video of the Vietnam veteran receiving the heartwarming surprise was uploaded to Youtube by Carrothers. Soon, it received an outpouring of comments and shares. People were touched by the kind act and Pack's reaction of extreme gratitude. One comment read: "A man who gave so much for his country. .. I'm glad a Good Samaritan was there to pay a bit of that sacrifice back to him", and another: "This melts my heart. This is what humanity is all about. Helping others. It's stories like this that restore my faith in humanity."

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A Miracle

Youtube/ Lynzee Carrothers

“This is a miracle,” Pack exclaimed later. “After 90 days I figured they would be gone.” He also wanted to treat his beloved pets when they arrived home after being away from them for so long: “I let them stay in bed with me last night until they pushed me onto the floor,” he said. But there were more upheavals to come for Pack.

Delaware Commission of Veterans Affairs

Facebook/Lindsay Donovan

Now, after his illness, Pack has had to leave his job as a tractor driver as it would put too much strain on his heart. That's when he heard about the Delaware Commission of Veterans Affairs and found out about the resources that were available to him. Pack already has a construction management degree, but this program will help him undergo training so that he can start a career.

Famous

Facebook/Lindsay Donovan

Since the tearful reunion and acts of kindness from the entire community that enabled Pack and his dogs to be reunited, Blaze and Bailey have been invited to appear on Fox & Friends in New York. Such a wonderful story of kindness and determination deserves to be seen. Hopefully it will inspire more kindness in the world. But where is Pack now?