Over the course of the last 20 years, the organization has rescued more than a thousand dogs. One of these was Ella, the pooch found by Wilkes-Myers. This particular animal was found on the side of Interstate 40 in central Tennessee in 2009. Wilkes-Myers told CBS News how she came across her. “I saw a beautiful Rottweiler drinking water out of a ditch,” she explained. “She was starved and covered in ticks.”
Wilkes-Myers took Ella back to her rescue ranch. However, there was something different about this dog compared to the many others Wilkes-Myers had seen while working for the organization. The rescuer told CBS News what she felt about the dog’s circumstances. “She’s somebody’s baby, you could tell,” she said. “She just didn’t act like a stray dog to me.”
This was partly what prompted Wilkes-Myers to investigate further – this and the pile of bits and pieces that the dog had gathered together. Her rescuer realized straightaway that there was something important about them. On closer inspection, the random odds and ends turned out to be items that belonged to the pooch’s owners. It appeared that Ella had rounded them all up, possibly to feel some sort of connection to her family. Wilkes-Meyers was astounded. “Oh, my God, it just blew my mind and I thought, you know, this dog is trying to find some comfort,” she explained.