In Critical Care Assistance Fund, Dogs

Do you remember our little Peanut? We met her a few weeks ago while performing our routine Saturday morning task of the professional photo-shoots for the new dog intakes that entered the shelter that week. This tiny, 10 pound dachshund/beagle mix-breed girl was emaciated and grossly sick with Bordetella. There was evidence that she had been over-bred and medically neglected. We knew she would have to endure a long weekend until Dr. Cindy could see her at the shelter so we pulled her from the facility immediately and began her vetting that afternoon with antibiotics – and more. With her ribs and spine showing, we knew tiny meals given 4 hours apart were all she could endure until her stomach got use to food in it. Given a ¼ of a cup of chicken and rice prepared for her, there was obvious distress in her stomach as she immediately went down on her belly as soon as she finished it. Comforted and consoled, the discomfort passed and she appeared to be herself.

With an impending spay and a course of antibiotics, we put a plea out to the community in hopes of finding the best adopter ever for this tiny, sweet girl. Sometimes placement happens quickly and sometimes it takes an extended period of time so while she was receiving her vetting we were interviewing too. A combination of Facebook and a radio spot on WQMX proved fruitful and we found her a home within short-time.

With a weakened immune system, Peanut had difficulty kicking the Bordetella virus which caused a delay in her scheduled spay. PIFFP doesn’t ever put an unaltered pet back out into the community so this meant she would need to stay in foster care until she was strong enough to tolerate anesthesia and surgery. While Peanut was in our care she received a couple medicated baths to better condition her hair and skin that suffered tremendously because of her malnourishment. On her last bath we discovered a mammary tumor (the equivalent of breast cancer in humans) and immediately knew we uncovered another medical condition that must also be addressed immediately.

No one has ever said animal rescue is easy but this quickly became a very complex case. After nearly 3 weeks, Peanut improved enough to go to surgery (for her multiple issues which would now include a bilateral mastectomy) and she is presently recovering comfortably and gaining some weight; however, there is a huge lesson in why we want to share her story…

We preach spay and neuter to the public (or to anyone that will listen!) CONSTANTLY and this is the reason. With every heat-cycle or pregnancy you allow your dog to have her chances of developing reproductive organ disease and cancer is increased EXPONENTIALLY. Not a little bit – a lot! Additionally, there are health benefits for our male dogs that are neutered too.

Who would think this could be life-threatening for a 5 year old little girl? Well, sadly, we have been told it is. Awaiting the pathology report that is due on Thursday, we will learn whether the mass is benign or malignant. If it’s benign, she will adopted by her awaiting family and loved until her last days. If it’s malignant, she will live the rest of her days with me and we will make sure she is loved and happy and has a great quality of life until we will be forced to help her over the rainbow bridge.

With information pending, we remain hopeful and intend to keep you all informed as to what her future will be. We give special “thanks” to Dr. Cindy and Dr. Dane Arends for always being in our corner. You two are “good people” and PIFFP appreciates you. Thank you to Peanut’s pending adopter, Barbie, for your patience and constant contact with us. We know you love her already!

In closing… NO EXCUSES – SPAY AND NEUTER YOUR PETS! This doesn’t have to happen to your dog – or any dog. There are many health benefits associated with this procedure and by spaying/neutering you are doing your part to reduce the pet over-population epidemic we are experiencing in this community. ~ Georjette Thomas

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