A little Chihuahua, Mia, was dealt a rough hand in life. Back in March 2015, a veterinarian named Dr. Ostermann, who posted Mia’s story on Tails of a Shelter Vet, was asked to look at a few photos of Mia by Animal Services Officers because it was suspected that the emaciated dog in the photos had been a victim of animal cruelty or neglect. Ostermann was able to help the pup, but after life-saving surgery, her owner attempted to steal her back. Luckily, the vet made sure that Mia would never end up back in the hands of someone who would mistreat her this way again.

The emaciated dog was so weak that she could barely stand.



She was stricken with a life-threatening condition known as pyometra, which is completely preventable by spaying, Dr. Ostermann said.

The vet performed surgery to keep Mia alive, but she was still just clinging to life – pale, anemic and barely able to move, it looked like Mia was on the brink of death.


But then, something changed.


Given food, love, and care by the vet and staff, Mia started to come back to life.

Loving snuggles under her blanket.


Her personality shone through. Mia just couldn’t get enough belly rubs.



She was hand-fed every day until she reached a healthy weight.


The staff loved Mia so much that she was placed in foster care with one of the shelter’s veterinarians. Together, the pair went on amazing adventures.


To Yosemite National Park!


The queen of the mountains! Or at least, this rock.



She even moonlighted as a turtle for Halloween.

And made new doggy friends.


Now, Mia is happy, healthy, and ready for a new home.

In conjunction with the District Attorney, Animal Services are investigating Mia’s case and possibly filing criminal charges against her former owner. We hope that Mia will soon find her forever home where she will be given as much love and care as these amazing veterinarians gave her.

All image source: Dr. Ostermann/Tails of a Shelter Vet