ORLANDO, Fla. – (Nov. 1, 2010)Ripley’s Believe It or Not! is always in search of stories, facts and achievements that are unbelievable. Company officials recently discovered a story involving a dog that was so amazing and unbelievable and was in so much distress, that they had to step in and help.

Ripley’s is donating money to help a neglected dog in Houma, Louisiana. A poodle was found in a ditch with fur so badly matted that it couldn’t even walk.  The dog was literally a living, breathing ball of hair.

Ripley. Yes there is a dog under there!
Staff at a local animal rescue group, My Heart’s Desire, rescued the dog, had his massive amount of tangled mane shaven off and gave him a very fitting name – Ripley.

According to shelter co-founder Tracey Lapeyrouse, they chose the name Ripley because “you would have never believed there was a dog under there. He didn’t even look like a dog. He looked like the elephant man. All you could see was his snout.” The company’s love for unusual animals comes directly from Robert Ripley himself, who owned many pets including a one-eyed dog name Cyclops.

Ripley has been given a good grooming, lots of TLC, and has been neutered. My Heart’s Desire is now looking for a permanent home for him.

Ripley Entertainment Inc., the parent of the Ripley’s Believe It or Not! brand, is making a donation to the shelter and to Ripley’s future family. The company will give $400 to My Heart’s Desire and Ripley the dog will come with a gift card for a local pet store that his new owners can use for food, grooming, toys and other expenses.

“Ripley the dog is what Ripley’s Believe It or Not! is all about,” said Tim O’Brien, VP of Communications for Ripley’s Believe It or Not! “It’s unbelievable that a dog could even be in this condition, let alone survive and go on to potentially become a great pet for someone.”

Ripley - after the save and shave

This may not be the last time that Ripley the dog will hear from the people at Ripley’s. His story is being considered for the next Ripley’s Believe It or Not! book.

Anyone interested in making a donation to My Heart’s Desire should contact Tracey Lapeyrouse at tvlapeyrouse@hotmail.com or call the shelter at 985-226-4693. 

Press release and photos courtesy of Ripley's Newsroom.


Additional information via the Dailycomet.com:

Workers at St. John the Baptist Animal Shelter called Ms.Lapeyrouse about "Ripley", after finding him in a ditch outside the St. John facility. His fur was matted to the point that it was unable to walk.

Lapeyrouse said Ripley was socialized at one point because he seeks out the attention of people, but he remains timid. They're not sure if he was abandoned or on his own for a long time.

Ripley is unused to touch because of the time spent encased in that matted coat, Lapeyrouse said. The sensation of newspaper under his paws or even his ears touching his head confuse him and make him shake.

My Heart's Desire Co-founder Tracey Lapeyrouse holds “Ripley”.  (Emily Schwarze/Staff)


This is truly "unbelievable" ... unbelievable that an owner could allow this to happen, unbelievable that a dog could survive in this condition, and almost unbelieveable that the "after" photo is the same dog  as the one in the first photo.

He sure is a cutie!! 

date Tuesday, November 2, 2010

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