One lucky dog: Darak after Afghanistan
Darak, a white, mixed-breed dog who took three bullets and was run over by a car while living as a stray in Afghanistan, was reunited with one of the men responsible for sending him to the U.S.
“Hey, buddy,” Kyle Huttenlocker, a 30-year-old security company employee just back to Indiana from Kabul said. “Remember me?”
Darak, it appeared, did, according to a story published in the Greenfield Daily Reporter.
In late 2010, Huttenlocker was in Kabul, Afghanistan, working for a security company hired by the State Department to protect the U.S. Embassy.
“There was a stray dog that lived in an alley right behind our camp that we were all very fond of,” said Huttenlocker, a Bloomington native who previously spent a year in Iraq as a member of the U.S. military.
Darak, who Huttenlocker and others named after the neighborhood they were in, was scrounging for food, and doing his best to avoid those who mistreated him. Given the affection he received, and bologna, he started calling the camp home.
“Afghans don’t treat dogs very well,” Huttenlocker said. “They throw rocks at them and hit them with sticks … Darak would hang out with us behind our camp, and bark at the Afghans whenever they walked by.”
One day Huttenlocker heard that Darak had been run over my an Afghan motorist. He and friends rushed to the area and found the dog hiding in a ditch.
Huttenlocker and his friends pooled their money and gave $400 to a dog rescue kennel in Kabul, which housed Darak for three weeks. The kennel contacted the Puppy Rescue Mission, a nonprofit organization that raises funds to help American soldiers bring dogs home.
The mission raised more than $4,500 to transport Darak to a veterinary clinic in Pakistan, then to the U.S. for more extensive treatment.
Three months ago, Huttenlocker’s mother, Beth Sherfield, picked up Darak at the Indianapolis International Airport.
Sherfield took Darak to a Bloomington veterinarian, who found he had a fractured spine, and that his abdomen contained three bullets. She then dropped him off at Wayport Kennels, where, as she hoped, another family that had heard his story came forward to adopt him.
“We needed another dog like we needed a hole in the head,” said Kathy Headley, who along with her husband, Steve, already had three dogs and three inside cats. But, she reports, they are all mostly getting along.
The Headleys paid $4,000 to an Indianapolis veterinary hospital to have Darak’s broken spine repaired and the bullets removed.
Upon seeing Huttenlocker, who stopped by for a visit upon his return to the country, Darak limped over to him and began licking his hands.
“How you doing, Bub?” Huttenlocker said, scratching Darak behind the ears. “It’s good to see you again. You’re one lucky dog.”
(Photo: From the Chip-in page for Darak)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 28th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abused, adopted, afghanistan, animals, bloomington, darak, dog, dogs, indiana, kabul, kyle huttenlocker, mixed breed, mutt, pets, puppy rescue mission, rescue, rescued, security, state department, stray, streets, us embassy