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In August I became a Federal Volunteer assigned to Habitat for Humanity of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. I was excited to be able to give back and anxious to begin my new life in Biloxi. I adopted a chi-terrier mix from the SPCA shelter in Picayune, MS and began settling in. Allison was a wonderful little dog who had been abused. Everyday we would take walks and I would work with her to gain her trust. On November 23, 2008 while walking around our block we were attacked by pit bulls. Allison did not survive the attack. I had a deep gash in my head, lacerations on my chest and permanent nerve damage to my hand. My friends, in order to help, found a wonderful little chi-weenie at a shelter just outside of Mobile, AL. After some hesitations I brought Addie home. She has wormed her way into my heart, helping to heal the damage to my head and my heart. Although Allison will never be replaced, Addie has brought her love back to me in many ways. One of my favorite times of the day is coming home at lunch to walk her and she greets me at the door with kisses. I am thankful for the time spent with Allison and grateful for the love of Addie who has taught me that our hearts really can heal.

Dorothy Nootbaar
Biloxi, MS

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