KINGMAN - Tragedy struck Ronald Potratz in April when he lost two dogs to a bee attack, but thanks to the veterinary staff at Manzanita Animal Hospital, he has a new four-footed friend.
On April 24, Potratz was taking care of his next-door neighbor's house in Golden Valley when he noticed his dogs acting strangely. The culprit was a swarm of bees that soon attacked Potratz as well, and he is allergic to their stings.
He called 911 and the Golden Valley Fire Department responded. Firefighters and emergency personnel were able to help Potratz, who was soon in stable condition. They then tried to save the dogs.
Assistant Fire Chief Ted Martin personally brought one of Potratz' dogs, Sadie Mae, to Manzanita Animal Hospital. The other dog, Skeeter, ran into the desert and was brought in when the dog returned later.
Unfortunately, both dogs later died.
Manzanita Animal Hospital staff had worked hard to try to save Sadie Mae and Skeeter, and wanted to help Potratz find a new dog. They got the opportunity to do so later, when he was at For the Luv of Paws Domestic Animal Rescue and Sanctuary in Golden Valley. He was there as a volunteer, helping pour concrete, when he noticed a dog at the gate.
When he walked up to the sandy brown mixed breed, she put her paws through the fence and licked his face.
As Cherie DaLynn, founder of For the Luv of Paws stated, "They just clicked immediately."
The dog's name was Dusty, and she had been dumped at the For the Luv of Paws Thrift Shop in Kingman back when she was a puppy, along with her sister. The sister found a home, but Dusty had been at the animal sanctuary a long time.
That changed when she met Ronald.
Once DaLynn confirmed the bees were gone from the property, the adoption process started, with adoption fees donated by Manzanita Animal Hosptial staff and family members.
This included veterinarian J. D. Anderson, Cherie Bradley, Debbie Martinez, Cindy Webster, Jodi Kempf, Sharon Kempf and D.J. Whaley. Potratz and DaLynn were at the veterinary office Thursday to pose for a photo and thank the staff.
Potratz said he was "glad I got a new dog. It fills the void the other two left." He said she loves her new home and will sometimes run laps around the yard or lick him on the face.
Added DaLynn: "Times are tight. I very much appreciate the fact that they (the staff) came together for the adoption fee. It was a very nice thing for them to do."