Dog Born With A Super Short Spine Doesn’t Realize She’s Any Different

An unusual illness has made this dog named Tilly shorter in stature, but she leads a happy life and inspires millions with her touching story.

Tilly’s extremely strange appearance makes people look as if she is missing the part between her front and back legs. But there is no reason to laugh or mock the little dog.

When Anna Marie Giannini met Tilly, she knew the dog was special.

Giannini doesn’t care that Tilly isn’t a “normal” puppy for her being different as well. “When I arrived, they told me one of the puppies was ᴅᴇꜰᴏʀᴍᴇᴅ  and they couldn’t find a home for him,” says Giannini. “I fell in love with Tilly and had already planned our next year together.” in his head before he finished that ʜᴏʀʀɪʙʟᴇ sentence.

Tilly was born with short spine syndrome, a rare condition that causes the vertebrae to compress making her appear to have no neck and an unusually short back. When Tilly was placed in Giannini’s arms she couldn’t believe who wouldn’t want such a precious puppy.

When I got her she was just a dirty little ball of fur. Tilly fit perfectly in my hand and as we drove home from where I picked her up, Tilly lay on my lap and looked up at me with those big brown eyes, and I knew she needed me and I needed her. 

Giannini had promised never to let Tilly feel left out again.

Most of the time, Giannini forgets that Tilly is completely different but the only time the little dog needs a little help is going up and down for which she uses special stairs. And because of a stiff spine, the baby can’t turn his head when it’s itchy or chew on his own. So her mom makes sure to set aside time during the day to give her a massage. Tilly always makes sure to show her mom how grateful she is to be in such a loving home.

Giannini said: “Tilly sleeps in bed with me like a little human being, resting her head on the pillow and shoving her feet into the blanket, she is always near me, touching me. When I was cooking, she stood right between my legs. When I was doing my homework, she lay right next to me with her feet on top of me.”

Although Tilly doesn’t think she’s any different, her unique looks tend to get her a lot of attention on the street from people as well as animals.

Other dogs are usually more attractive and gentle to her. Even so, Tilly doesn’t care and knows that she’s capable of anything. She is definitely determined and wants to play with any dog of any size.

Giannini has learned a lot from Tilly and would not trade his time with her for the world “Tilly reminds me daily that I should be grateful to everyone. Because I don’t know when I’ll get her and she’s so special and emotional, I feel lucky to be the one who gives her a good life and a happy time by her side.”

She constantly reminds me that being different is something special.


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