Steve Grieg has always loved being surrounded by animals and has had at least four pets around since he was a child.
But when one of his beloved dogs passed away, he wanted to do something to honor his memory.
The Colorado animal lover decided to find the least adoptable dog and give it a loving home, but he didn’t stop there.
For those older dogs with health issues who find themselves alone in the world, it can be difficult to find another home.
Often people don’t want to take them on if they’re slow, set in the ways and could result in expensive medical bills but big-hearted Steve wanted to change all that.
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When I was in high school I took some apptitude test that said I should stay away from any occupation that required mechanical skills. My mother, fully aware of my limited abilities in that area, got a big kick out of those test results and put them up on our refrigerator, I assume to remind her never to let me work on the family car. So, knowing that, I'll just let you guess how long it took me to put this wheelchair together and whether I might have used language not entirely suitable for a children's author. Doris has very weak back legs so I'm hoping this will give her a little bit more mobility around the house. But she's really kind of a miracle. She came to me with a bad heart and then she developed kidney disease, two things that are very hard to treat at the same time. About four months ago her test results were so bad our vet wasn't sure she'd make it through the week. But here she is, doing great and handing whatever life throws at her, including a poorly assembled wheelchair. #goodattitudepoorapptitude
After he lost his most beloved dog, he honored his memory by going to his local shelter and asking for their “least adoptable dog.”
“So [I adopted] a 12-year-old Chihuahua [named Eeyore],” he told Happiest.net. “With a heart murmur and four bad knees and I brought him home and that was just the beginning of all the animals.”
Giving Eeyore a loving home gave him so much joy, he didn’t want to stop there and began taking in other old unwanted animals.
Steve now has 10 elderly dogs, two pigeons, two ducks and a pig called Bikini, who was sent to him by a friend who couldn’t keep her.
Steve says senior animals are wiser and easier to develop a relationship with.
“You kind of know what you want out of life once you become a certain age,” he said. “These dogs know who they are and it’s easy to develop a relationship with a person or pet who knows who they are.”
He started an Instagram page charting the adventures of his animal gang, which now has over 800,000 followers.
“They just make it feel like home. It’s just fulfilling knowing that these guys are happy and loved and well-taken care of. It makes my days worthwhile,” he said.
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I got the dogs together for a quick group shot with our newest member John Henry (2nd from the left) and it looks like he's going to be a poser, unlike Doris (far right) who was awake and looking around until she realized I was taking a picture, then she pretended to be asleep. She's ornery like that. I can tell by the smile on her face when the shot is over that she thinks it's funny. The fact that we were able to get several great shots of Doris for The One and Only Wolfgang book (new Barnes & Noble link in bio) is nothing short of a miracle. I give Bikini the pig a hard time about being a diva but Doris is no picnic to shoot either, and as far as she's concerned it's "mission accomplished". Also, Doris wears diapers most of the time and there is nothing she loves more than making it nearly impossible to put those on. It's like trying to put scotch tape on a wiggly fish. Somehow she can squeeze her hips in and simultaneously flail her back legs, snickering to herself the whole time. I have no idea why those things make me love her even more, but they do. #theoneandonlywolfgang
I love what this big-hearted animal lover is doing with his life, what an inspiration. He loves these animals unconditionally.
Please share to pay tribute to this true animal hero.