Vida’s story

Clare Bezuidenhout, Helderberg

On Saturday May 18, while driving through Stanford, a tiny movement caught my eye as I drove past an informal settlement.

I pulled over onto the side of the road, climbed out of my car and saw a severely neglected and emaciated dog, lying curled up on a heap of sand next to the road.

I approached her, and spent 30 minutes trying to catch her. She was petrified and would not stop running away from me out of fear.

I finally managed to get close to her, took my jersey off, threw it over her head and managed to catch her.

She was infested with fleas, worms and ticks, and had severe mange, ringworm, parasites and malnutrition.

I took her straight to Stanford Vet, who assisted me immediately with some medical treatment.

On the Monday morning I brought her through to Animal Welfare Helderberg, where I work.

She spent the last month at our kennels receiving treatment every day for her mange, ringworm, malnutrition and poor immunity.

She had a very severe case of canine oral papillomas which was a result of a very low immunity.

She was on a special diet, and received weekly medical baths as well as lots of love. She made a remarkable recovery, and has blossomed into a loving, playful, friendly and affectionate girl.

We named her Vida which means “life” in Spanish. I do believe she was thrown into the road to die but her angels were looking after her.

She slept for four days after being rescued, I think her body was so tired because she had to be on her guard 24/7, and it was very clear that she had never known love.

Last week she had the worst of her oral warts cut out, and she is currently in a wonderful foster home in Somerset West.

She was a fighter from the beginning, she never gave up hope, she stayed positive and we knew she would make a full recovery.

She has taught us so much about life and being grateful for the little things like being warm, loved and having a full tummy.

For more about Vida, pictured above with me now, readers can contact me at