Being pregnant is a stressful time for any mom. However, when mom is an abused pitbull who is ready to give birth at any moment, then the stress is off the scales. This is the situation that Valentine, a pregnant pitbull, who was fostered by Brie Willis found herself in.
According to Doggie Viral, Brie gave her the name Valentine because she fostered her on Valentine’s Day. When she first arrived at Brie’s house, Valentine was too scared to even look her in the eye. She cowered away whenever Brie tried to reach out to touch her.
Why Was Valentine So Nervous?
Not much is known about what happened to Valentine before she came to the rescue center. The fact that she was too scared to even look at Brie, means she must have been very badly treated by a human. She did not appear to have any physical injuries, but she was obviously very traumatized.
She was also heavily pregnant, but no-one knew when her puppies were actually due. It was a worrying time for Brie because she knew that Valentine would have problems delivering the puppies if she was still feeling the effects of the trauma she had faced in the past. Brie knew that she had to try and get Valentine to trust her before the babies were due to be born.
Giving birth can be a difficult experience and Brie wanted to be able to help in any way she could, even if it was just offering some comfort. However, that was going to be difficult when Valentine shied away every time Brie tried to approach her.
The Ron Project points out that hiding away and refusing to interact are both signs of trauma. Valentine must have had a very difficult life before she came to live with Brie, and this seemed to have left her unable to trust anyone.
Building A New Friendship
Brie started to build up a relationship with Valentine by approaching her gently and offering treats. As Valentine began to look at her when the treats were offered, Brie also started to pat her head and belly. This patient approach did start to eventually pay off. Valentine began to approach Brie when she wanted some fuss.
These approaches were always quite tentative, but when she did slowly approach Brie, her tail was always wagging. It was at this point that Brie realized Valentine had turned a corner in her recovery. As each day went by she became more affectionate, and she seemed to realize that Brie wasn’t going to hurt her.
After about three weeks Brie took Valentine outside for the first time since she had fostered her. Before this she had been too scared to go outside. There may have been some specific event that occurred in her past that put her off going outside, or she may have just felt more comfortable staying indoors.
Whatever the reasons for her fear of going outdoors, she was able to overcome this and continue making progress. Brie will never forget the look on her face when she was able to get out and play in the garden for the first time. She loved looking around and exploring all the space that was now available to her.
Time For The Puppies To Arrive
When the time came for her to give birth, Valentine was in a much better place mentally than she had been just a few weeks ago. Brie had been monitoring her closely for signs that the puppies may be ready to be born.
There was a false alarm where she looked as if she was in some discomfort, and she was moving around as if she was getting ready to give birth. Brie stayed up with her through the night but then she was back to her normal self the next day.
A few days later Brie noticed that Valentine was frantically fixing her bed up, and she knew that she was preparing for the puppies to be born.
That night Valentine delivered six puppies and Brie was delighted to see that they were all healthy and doing well. It was a long night for everyone but the lack of sleep was definitely worth it. All six puppies stayed with Brie and Valentine for eight weeks before they went off to their forever homes.
Brie would have loved to keep them all but it was just not practical. There was no way that she had the time to devote to the puppies to give them all the attention that they needed. She couldn’t bear to part with Valentine though after they had formed such a strong bond. She began the process of officially adopting her not long after the puppies had been born.
A Happy Ending For All
Although there is a tinge of sadness that Valentine and her pups will not stay together, the story had a happier ending than anyone could have imagined at the beginning.
The whole birth could have had a very different outcome if Brie had not made Valentine feel so relaxed in her new home. Valentine was able to give her puppies the best start in life because she was in a position where she could take care of them when they were newborns.
Brie is sure that Valentine would want them all to have a better start to life than she had. Animal Channel reported that the whole experience inspired Brie to open her own animal shelter. She had seen first hand how much happiness had been created by her being able to foster Valentine.
She wanted to be able to give other dogs the chance that Valentine and her puppies had. At one point it seemed as if Valentine would spend the rest of her life experiencing trauma. This could have meant that she was not able to deliver the puppies safely, putting all their lives at risk.
However, with a bit of TLC from Brie, the outcome was very different and now they all have loving homes. She now hopes she can give all animals that come into the shelter the same chance of a happy ending.