Saturday, August 22, 2015

Foster Chronicles - Romona the German Shephard Mix

Great News! Romona (now spelled Ramona) was adopted by a Forever Family! She will live her life - how ever long she has left - happy and loved and part of a family. She was adopted with a waived adoption fee because her health future is unknown. She had so many BB pellets in her body that surgery was not an option. Therefore, they could not repair the hernia and relocate her organs. We wish her a LONG and happy life with her forever family. Happy Tails Ramona!

Unfortunately, because of her condition - the diaphragmatic hernia - her organs will eventually suffocate her heart. She was adopted without an adoption fee because there is no way to know how long she will live. She has over 250 BB pellets imbedded in her skin, which made surgery impossible. I'm told the pellets are probably due to her ending up on land where she wasn't welcome. There is a custom to shoot stray dogs with BB guns to get them off their lawn. So Ramona was either quite persistent or didn't get the message. I like to think of her as being unstoppable.

Below is the original post:

We are fairly new to fostering so we are still learning all the rewards and challenges that come with this gift of service.

We learned a new lesson with Romona - that there's a dark side to the Fostering experience.

We were foster-free. Henry had been fostered and we were less than 2 weeks away from a trip that would take us out of town for over a week. So no more fostering till we got back to town. And then I saw Romona on the Crate Escape Foster Safe page. They couldn't rescue her from the shelter without a foster family and no one had stepped up.

All I need to hear is - this dog will not be saved - and you have me at your mercy. I figured she would be in the foster system for longer than we had to foster her but better than death row.

Russell picked her up because I was out of town. She was shedding but other than that seemed ok. I asked for updates and photos and all he said was - she won't let me stop petting her. She loves people over dogs and really had no interest in Bella ... which was too bad for Bella. She really just wanted to be pet. She would put her paw on you if you stopped. I was working on ridding her of this habit so her next move was to LEAN on you. She would do what an old friend of mine would call being "IN" you - so close there is NO SPACE. She would scootch up to you so she could really get right up against your leg. It was an insistent and needy love - but love just the same. And her soft eyes and peaceful disposition were hard to resist.

She was due for her vet visit 4 days after she arrived to our house. I dropped her off and the Vet gave her the once over. I mentioned she was favoring her back left leg. She also seemed really skinny. The Vet thought she may have already been spayed but couldn't find a scar.

I was surprised to find out that she would be on 1 month bed rest until she was cleared for adoption, activity, play of any kind. Heart worm treatment post-op procedure. If they exert themselves they could clot and die. I didn't realize heart worm was such serious business. I didn't think Romona would mind the inactivity - though the crate living would be terrible for her. I couldn't help but think of how Bella would do with this scenario. I get stressed for her just thinking about it.

I was due to pick her up on the 3rd day of her stay ... 1 day for the spay and 2 days for the heart treatment. But then I got a message from the foster coordinator that she needed to give me an update.

It was not good. Here's what she said...

"...Ramona was anesthetized for her spay surgery, they found out she was already spayed but while in there, found what that thought was a mass. Her organs we're not where they were supposed to be.'
'They did some imaging and diagnosed her with a diaphragmatic hernia, which means her organs which should be in the abdomen, were in her chest.'

'Well that was only the tip of the iceberg. She had a pelvic fracture which healed funny
A leg fracture that healed wrong, hence the limp. She had bee Bee pellets in her.
And she (still) has heartworm.'

'She also had complications while under for surgery due to her condition. So.......she did not get heartworm treatment.'

'...the hernia obviously needs to be fixed, but that's another story. It's got to be done by a specialist and we were quoted ($5,000 to $7,000)."

I'm not sure what will happen now. At the time of this writing, Romona had not yet had the heartworm treatment and the money for the surgery would need to be raised. We don't know if she was hit by a car and never treated or if she was abused. Either way it's a terrible thing to go through and she's too sweet to have deserved such a roadblock to her forever home.

Please send lots of prayers to Romona for a speedy recovery and a happily ever after!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Thanks for Helping with my Rescue Pit's Mange!

We have loved Pet Health Opc Formula with Glucosamine for Dogs and Cats for a while but we love even more hearing how it helps our furry family members!
Here's a great testimonial from Joe Borelli with 2 rescue pit bulls:
He says “Our boy pit had a really bad case of mange. He was on some full strength de-worming medicine...You could see his skin all over his body and he was bald in several areas. Within a few months of being on Pet Health Opc Formula with Glucosamine for Dogs and Cats (and being nursed back to health in a loving environment) we were able to get him off the medicine. Now he shows off his pretty amazing brindle coat and he has regrown most of his fur back. Plus, it helps both dogs with their itchy skin. So we continue with daily use.”

We confirmed that Joe rescued his pit, Redenbacher, last December and was using Pet OPC regularly for 4 months to see a full fur replenishment.  What a beauty! His other pit, Maribelle, is pictured below - look at that heart nose!

Pet Health Opc Formula with Glucosamine for Dogs and Cats does this and more. Here's a list of Benefits*:
  • Combats free radicals
  • Helps maintain healthy cholesterol levels
  • Helps maintain healthy circulation
  • Helps maintain joint flexibility
  • Helps promote cardiovascular health
  • Helps support visual health/visual acuity
  • Powerful free radical scavenger
  • Supports healthy blood vessel dilation
  • Supports healthy nitric oxide levels
  • Supports healthy blood glucose levels
  • Supports healthy platelet activity
Do you have a testimonial about Pet Health OPC? We'd love to hear it! Please comment below =)

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
This post contains affiliate links. 🐶

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Foster Chronicles - Henry the Hound

For our first official Foster experience I wanted to EASE us in. So we offered to foster Henry - a hound mix that had been bumping around the Crate Escape foster system for a while and didn't have a Foster family at the time of our approved Foster application. Henry - a name that makes me think of a sweet...ornery...senior. So the name fit him perfectly ;-) They had him down as 3 but I am sure he was at least 6.

He and Bella got along great! He was very low key but he could wrestle and play with Bella for a good 15-20 minutes. Of course he needed a 3 hour nap afterwards but he was a great sport about it! They would wrestle a lot and play and run outside. Bella would take position on the couch and Henry on the floor - both comfortable and both ready for a tussle. It was the cutest thing. They got along great. There were some challenges - like the fact that they absolutely could not ignore the other one when meal time came. Henry can EAT! And he wanted to eat whatever Bella was eating. Also he loved to eat paper..and wood..and cardboard. He would find egg cartons and boxes and notebooks and help with the recycling breakdown.

We got to know Henry's quirks quickly. For example, when he's hungry he would start to gnaw on the nearest piece of furniture. So as long as he got 2 squares a day he never did that. He also had a collapsed trachea. I have to say we didn't know about this at first and were very worried about a cough he developed after a run with Bella in the yard. But all we had to do was blow into his nose with his mouth held closed and he was good as new. He also loved to bite his nails - great for those grooming bills! He would be in his crate but he was so low key and slept so much that he was fine without a crate too. So we quickly realized he should just be left to nap in the living room for short spurts when we were out and he slept on a dog bed in our room at night.

Henry was a sweet heart and was adopted by a great family with another dog named Cookie (also a Crate Escape rescue)
in Wappingers Falls NY. We loved having him with us...even though sometimes he could be a bit of an asshole LOL.

Happy tails Henry!

Agency - Crate Escape
Temperament - low key, affectionate, stubborn, playful
Favorite toy - wood block specially treated for dog use from Puppy Paws in Cornwall
Rewards - Henry was in the system for a while and didn't have a foster family. We loved being able to give him a comfy place to hang out with a furry friend, fenced yard and food galore. He has the best eyes and enjoys a good rub down.
Challenges - His stubbornness translated to him being hard to move around so you would run into him a lot when you expected him to get out of the way. Once we learned his quirks and special needs (listed above), there were no challenges with Henry.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Foster Chronicles - Betsy now Princess Bella - a brindle Hound mix

You may not count Betsy in our foster family. She was only with us for 2 hours and it was only because her foster family work schedule conflicted with transport pickup. I thought -I'll be there anyway so we can take her for a few hours.

Well that was all the time it took for her to steal my heart. We are on our 5th foster so far if you count Betsy - which I don't think most would - and she was the hardest to let go of.

It's bittersweet to me that she found her forever home (photo below) because a part of me really wanted to adopt her even though I knew deep ... deep ...DEEP down that she wasn't a good fit for our family.
This was my first experience with transport. You arrive and then you wait - in this case you wait in the very hot sun - for the transport to arrive. It's not an exact arrival time because they are coming from pretty far away ... in this case North Carolina.

There are toys, collars and food all laid out. The foster families all seemed to have done this before so they were getting the supplies they needed, chatting with the volunteers and each other or enjoying their car's air conditioning.

When the transport arrived, everyone gathered. Each dog was brought out one by one. First was the new mom. Then her puppies - oh the little cute puppies!! Children and adults alike came forward as their dog's name was called. The local humane society was there for photo moments with each family. The process moved along nicely - get your dog, get a photo, get a drink of water (the dog, not the humans!) and then get to the grassy area for a pee.

The dogs were kept apart for safety reasons - all leashed, all with their foster families.

Betsy was the sweetest thing you ever saw. She was skinny and had the puppy body movements - a bit awkward, bouncy, high energy. You don't know how it's cute to see this awkward body moving around but it so is!

She was a good temperament. Not shy or stressed. Cooperative.

We took her home and I stayed with her in the basement as we were advised to keep new fosters and current dogs apart for 24-48 hours.

I set up my computer to work, but Betsy was just too curious. =) We spent lots of time in the back yard - she never relieved herself in the house and did all her business outside. She was so adorable and loving and affectionate and needy and fabulous.

When her foster dad arrived, she had already attached herself to me and I to her. I would never have guessed that 2 hours would be long enough to make giving a foster up a hard thing to do. I ached for her for days. I considered adopting her. I had irrational thoughts of losing her to someone at an upcoming Renegades game!

This feeling passed slowly because I knew she wasn't the right dog for our family. But she will be the right dog for a very lucky family. And I know she'll have a great life!

Here's Betsy's first photo with her forever family. Her name is Princess Bella and she has a furry brother named Sir Bozzly who is also an adorably awesome rescue. We are so happy her foster family - Tom and Devin - took great care of Betsy and got her ready to live happily ever after. Happy tails Betsy... I mean Princess Bella =)

Agency - Crate Escape
Temperament - playful, clingy, adventurous
Favorite toy - bugs
Rewards - she was so loving and needy that you instantly wanted to keep her safe and love her forever and she had plenty of love and loyalty to give in return
Challenges - biggest challenge was giving her up

*All photos of Betsy are via the Crate Escape Foster Safe group

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Foster Chronicles - Baby Girl the Tuxedo Cat

When we took Baby Girl in, it was with the intention of keeping her. I had these romanticized thoughts of her bonding instantly with Bella and living happily ever after. Unfortunately, it was quickly apparent that this was never going to happen.

Baby Girl had a rough past. She was on her own for many years though she ate quite well thanks to a friendly and kind Deli owner on Long Island. We think she lived with an elderly woman who passed away and was sent out on her own to fend for herself. Thank goodness for the kindness of the local business owner. For 4 years she was fed turkey and american cheese (her favorite!) and spent lots of time on the back patio with the owner.

Unfortunately, when the deli was sold to a new owner, Baby Girl was left wanting as the new owner was not as generous or kind to this stray Tuxedo cat.

The kind deli owner felt sorry for Baby Girl and brought her home to live. It was only then that the two resident dogs revealed their hatred of cats and the deli owner's allergies revealed themselves.

Baby Girl needed to be rehomed immediately and let's face it - an animal in need has a home with me indeed!

Baby Girl lived with us in our basement, venturing up only when Bella was safely in her crate or our bed for the night. Her favorite thing to do was sit at a window watching the birds and nature.

I'm happy to say Baby Girl now lives in her forever home with a wonderful and kind and cat loving family! She has a human sister and a feline sister...though she gets along best with her human sister.

She can be found in windowsills all around the house, looking out at the birds and deer and rabbits. The perfect forever home for her!

This was our first experience fostering and while it was challenging, I am so glad we were able to transition Baby Girl to a home she can feel safe in.

Here are some photos of Baby Girl in her new home, courtesy of Heather Lynn - 

Agency - NONE
Temperament - scared, loving, playful, choosey
Favorite toy - catnip and feather at the end of a stick (a tie)
Rewards - when she was in the mood to play it was so fun to watch her and interact with her and the feather stick. She was a hunter - a stealth cat. And when she was in the mood to show her affection, she would rub against your leg and nuzzle her face into your foot. She wasn't overly generous with her playfulness or affection so when she showed it you knew it was genuine and from a really sacred place.
Challenges - her fear of men and dogs made it difficult for her to live in our house. She stayed in the basement and would only let her guard down around me. Bella was curious about her and when other dogs would visit we had to ensure a gate was up so they didn't go check out that funny cat smell in the basement. We needed a solitary and secluded place for her to be which made it difficult for me to spend time with her because I had do do so on her terms, in her space.