Whatever Happened To Nellie: A KLTV 7 Followup - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

05/07/08 - East Texas

Whatever Happened To Nellie: A KLTV 7 Followup

Nellie in October 2006, after being drug down a Van Zandt road. Nellie in October 2006, after being drug down a Van Zandt road.

In October 2006, worldwide headlines were made over "Nellie" - a chocolate lab in Van Zandt County who was dragged behind a truck and left for dead.

Her injuries were gruesome, and there was a public outpouring of support for Nellie as KLTV 7 News closely followed her case and recovery.

The images haunted many animal lovers across the country. Not only did the chocolate lab have severe skin injuries, her toenails were ripped out, the pads of her paws were worn to the bone and her knee was so badly injured that it required surgery.

At the Lake Country Animal Clinic in Mineola, Nellie would spend the next four months of her life recovering from the dragging. Two surgeries and hundreds of stitches later, Nellie fought for her life every step of the way.

Nellie today, a year and a half later, is with Brenda Oldfield, the woman who rescued her. She's a little bigger, but has the same sweet and loving personality she had when we first met her.

"She doesn't seem to have any residual fears of anything we can see, and she's just as good natured as she ever was," says Brenda.

If it wasn't for just a few scars, you'd never know Nellie had been through such a horrific experience.

"She's doing fantastic. She's made tremendous amounts of progress with minimal side effects. She gets around very well."

No one was ever formally charged for dragging Nellie. At one time, there were two suspects. The case was brought before a grand jury, but it was no-billed because of a lack of evidence.

Oldfield says, "I find it hard to believe that they never saw her lying in the back in their rear view mirrors, but once they saw what they did and they threw her in the ditch and left her to die, they should have been held accountable a little bit."

It may not be the outcome Oldfield wanted, but Nellie survived, and we can all learn from her story.

"I guess the big thing is to never give up on these little guys....give them an opportunity to let their personality come out and shine through."

All it took was a second chance at life.

(This is a KLTV 7 News follow-up. For the complete story, click the link at right titled 'Whatever Happened To Nellie?')

ckhalil@kltv.com

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