SPCA Chief Inspector Adopts Terminally Ill Rescued Dog To Fulfil His Promise

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In an act of true compassion, Chief Inspector Jaco Pieterse of the Cape of Good Hope SPCA, fulfilled a heartfelt promise he made to a dog named Rocky at the time of his rescue.

The Rescue

Rocky, a severely emaciated and suffering Boxer was found on a property in Eerste Rivier, Cape Town.  Despite multiple warnings issued by SPCA’s Inspector Lwazi Ntungele, Rocky’s owner failed to provide him with proper care, leaving our Inspector with no option other than to obtain a court order for his removal.

The Court order was executed on the 29th of September 2023, in collaboration with The City of Cape Town’s Law Enforcement Animal Control Unit with live Facebook coverage that resulted in Rocky winning the hearts of the nation.
The Promise

Rocky was in a desperate state of neglect.  “He was literally a walking skeleton” says Chief Inspector Jaco Pieterse, “and it broke my heart to see his condition.  I promised him that I would find him a good home and I was determined to keep that promise, no matter what”.

Following his rescue, Rocky was admitted to our Animal Hospital in Grassy Park, where our team of veterinarians immediately took over his care. Unfortunately, Rocky deteriorated a little more every day, despite of our best efforts that included a premium diet and consultations with private veterinarians.  When tests confirmed our worst fears, we were all devastated, but nobody more so than our Chief Inspector. 

The Devastating Diagnosis
“Rocky was diagnosed with Cancer, his diagnosis was terminal with no hope of recovery and the fact that I wouldn’t be able to keep my promise to him kept me awake at night” says Pieterse.

There’s no doubt that working in animal rescue takes courage but what our Chief Inspector did next showed how brave he really is.  He made the decision to adopt Rocky, so he could make good on the promise he made him 2 weeks earlier.  “I knew it would be one of the most difficult things I would ever do, but I had to honour my word and love Rocky as hard as I could for whatever time he had left” says Chief Inspector Jaco Pieterse.

Love To Last Forever

Keeping Rocky pain-free and comfortable as a priority and with clearance from our veterinary team, our Chief Inspector gave Rocky the full loving-owner experience that included; a trip to the beach so he could experience the ocean, a ride in a car with his head out the window, more treats, love and cuddles than he’d ever had in his entire life and on his last day, a trip through the KFC drive through.  The order – “A streetwise two, with no chips, please”, followed by a picnic of the deboned chicken on the grass.

Rocky and Chief Inspector Jaco Pieterse on the beach
Rocky watching on as another dog and his owner enjoy the water
A ride in the car with dad
What’s that smell? A trip through the KFC drive thru
A streetwise two but hold the chips please? This is just for me!
Goodbyes are Hard
Watch The Video of Rocky's Love Filled Days Below

When Rocky became too weak to take more than a few steps unaided, and there was nothing more he could offer him other than love, dignity and peace, our Chief Inspector held him close, like a loving owner would, while we sent Rocky over the rainbow bridge.

KFC isn’t good for dogs, but it is good!
Love lasts forever, goodbye my boy
Play in Peace Rocky 
It was a hard hello and an even harder goodbye” says Chief Inspector Jaco Pieterse.  “But as it always is with any animal, he gave me so much more than I ever gave him. I’ll never forget him, and I’ll keep fighting cruelty every single day, in honour of his memory”.

Rocky will be cremated, and his ashes will be spread at the beach he enjoyed so much.

We extend our heartfelt thanks to every person who allowed Rocky’s story to touch their hearts and every person who contributed towards the costs of his care, hoping as we did for his complete rehabilitation. We are equally thankful to every person who cried alongside us. it is a small comfort, but as one Facebook follower commented “Rocky died with a Dad and with love and care and pain free” . We couldn’t ask for more for any dog, anywhere.

Watch Rocky’s Rescue Here

A streetwise two but hold the chips please? This is just for me!

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