It is with great sorrow that we must share with you that our beloved Sophia, Curly Tail mascot & beloved pet of founder Drea, has passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. We are all heartbroken and devastated from her untimely passing.
For those of you who have followed Curly Tail since our meager beginnings in 2008, know that it is because of Sophia that the rescue was born. She is the beautiful face on our banner. She is the very heart and soul of our organization.
It is because of Sophia, that so many lives have been saved and so many more will be saved.
All of the pugs we have rescued over the last 5 years and all of the families who have adopted from us have found love because of Sophia.
Sophia was truly a gift who belonged to us all. We know that her strong spirit is still with us, and that her legacy will live on.
As we struggle to come to terms with this great loss, we hope you will take a moment to remember Sophia for exactly what she was ...
Love. Pure Love.
Please visit Sophia's Remembrance Page
We are fostering two Hurricane Sandy Pugs, Rosie and Oscar for a while. They lost their home during the storm and nobody claimed them at the shelter.
We love having them here at the pug farm and we are thankful this year for being able to help these sweet babies!
Happy Thanksgiving to all.
The following video contains over 200 pugs that Curly Tail Pug Rescue has placed into loving permanent homes. If anybody was wondering why I do what I do -- this says it all!
Sweet little Didi, or Deeders as I had come to call her affectionately has gone off to her forever home. I don't mind telling you this little pugaletta had wiggled her way right into my heart. Some fosters are harder to let go than others. She was one of those.
Might have been the way her face was a perfect cross of all of Pugsley and Plummy's best features, or her deliciously prominent corn chip and waxy pug ear smells. Her MCT scare and me helping her through the surgery certainly brought back a lot of memories of the Sausage's battle with MCT and perhaps made my heart open to her more..but more than anything it was probably her sweet silly affectionate and loving little ways and antics that I will miss so much.
While I am so very happy for her and her new mom who is lovely, I still feel so sad to see her go.
It's been an especially emo few weeks. A friend of mine lost her beloved pug unexpectedly and theres been some difficult cases in rescue.
Moxie seems sad with Deeders gone too, she's just not acting herself since she left. I feel bad but have decided to take a little break from fostering to regroup and recharge. It probably won't be a long break, there are soo so many pugs in need and I would feel too guilty not helping as many as I physically and mentally can.
That's my Plummykins beautiful face :)
I love how Didi just looks at Moxie like she is a lunatic.
So sorry for the lack of posts lately!! Life in a bit of transition mode at the moment and super busy with all the fosters coming and going.
I did want to show you a pic of my latest foster, Didi. She is a total love and I am in awe of how much she already reminds me of both Pugsley and Plummy. She looks like a cross between the two!!
We are still getting to know each other but I have a feeling this one is going to be hard to let go when the time comes.
Since I seem to be on Facebook more these days with the increase in social media networking, I wanted to invite you to follow me there if you would like. I update that more frequently than my blog, because I can easily type an entry or upload a photo on the go from my iPhone. Just click the facebook banner below and send me a friend request noting that you came from Pugsplace.
I will still update my blog as much as possible.
Busy getting the house ready for Troy's Adoption this week, I am so happy that he found the most wonderful forever mommy to spoil him!! Even though we get a little sad and shed a tear or two when the fosters go, we couldn't be happier when it's a perfect match like this.
No time to be too too sad though because then short term foster puppy Grace will be staying with us until her adoption over the weekend...Grace is a Jack Russell / Pug mix, isn't she the cutest?
and then overnight guest handicapped sweet old Moe so he can be transported to his new long term foster home...
Then we are gearing up for fundraisers and our next long term foster! I love all these crazy young pugs and puggles but I confess I am secretly hoping I will get a mellow old senior next :)
Lots of stuff going on at the rescue, but I love all these sweet boys and girls coming and going on the pug farm. And my Moxie is such a trooper, she welcomes each one into her house with open
arms paws. I love being the link between their old lives and new lives when our souls collide on this path called rescue. We have many lessons to teach one another in our brief time together.
So I called the animal shelter where Moxie came from to find out more about her background. I thought it might help explain some of her quirky behaviors. I learned that she was not dropped off at the shelter as I had previously thought - no, instead she was found roaming the streets of South Central Pennsylvania by an animal control officer.
Poor Baba (her latest nickname) who was only appx 6 months old at the time, had the badly infected eye ulcer, only weighed 5 lbs! and the poor dear had 104 temperature upon intake.
*This was an early picture of Baba when I first got her, you can see how underweight she was..
Now I understand why she is constantly vacuuming the floor for any little crumb and why she always eats like she is starving, even if she just ate.
It explains why she is so scrappy and feisty, but also so sweet and loving at the same time.
It also explains why she seems slightly detached and independent at times.
The poor baby was a street dog hunting for food, not knowing when or where her next meal would come from :(
Of course I will never know the circumstances that led her to being homeless on the streets...
Was she let off the leash and escaped?
Was she abandoned by her owners who decided they couldn't afford to treat her eye so they let her loose?
Did she run away from home with a little stick and white bag thrown over her shoulder setting out on a mission to find a proper mama (aka me) who could take care of her the way she needed to be taken care of?
My fantasy mind likes to conjure up images of the latter.
The shelter folks, and the rescue org that pulled her from the shelter both feel that her eye injury occurred before she was homeless and that her former owners could not or did not want to pay for medical treatment so they removed her from the home. In what way, God only knows.
Now that I know this new information, I can only think she was very lucky to not have died from starvation or dehydration on the streets.
Lucky she didn't get hit by a car or attacked by another animal while she was sick and hungry and homeless.
Lucky she didn't get impregnated by another stray dog running lose in the streets.
Lucky she didn't get picked up by some thugs and used for who knows what purpose.
I find it amazing that of all her possible fates, she found her way to me instead! 4 states away!
My poor Baba.
I am holding her extra tight tonight, and every night.
I love her even more now that I know of her struggles.
My foster puggle Troy is quite the "clinger". He capitalizes on every waking opportunity to pin my limbs down as if he refuses to let me go anywhere. As I type, Troy is pinning down my legs while Moxie is pinning down my arms with her chin resting on the edge of my laptop. Only the tips of my fingers are free to move...
Such is the charmed life of an animal rescuer.
this one goes out to all the people who get rid of their dogs when they decide its no longer convenient to have them in their lives.
Foster Puggle Troy had his first bath with us today. He actually seemed to really like it!
Of course Moxie had to have one too. Now both of them smell squeaky clean and are taking naps in the sun while they dry off. Such sweetness I had to share.
Here is our latest foster puggle, Troy!
Troy is a bit overweight poor
little big fellow so Moxie has been hard at work exercising him in the dog run! In the process of keeping all these foster puggles on their toes, Moxie has lost a pound or two as well! It's a win win.
Troy is up for adoption, you can see more photos of him on the Curly Tail website.
If all goes well for Sophia her adoption will be finalized this weekend. Mox is going to miss her when she goes. They have become quite the buddies. Cuddling and playing, and generally getting into mischief with one another.
This is Sophia, a 4 year old Puggle. She was surrendered to Curly Tail and I have been fostering her for a few weeks.
She is a sweet dear heart! Definintely on the timid and shy side. Poor baby was taken from the only home she has known since 9 weeks old and since then been bounced around between different foster homes.
She loves to just cling to me. It took her a while to warm up to Moxie, given her crazy puppylike black pug energy but I must say being exposed to Sophia has helped put Mox in her place a bit.
Someone needed too!
I am now very proud of Miss Moxie for being a wonderful foster sister to Sophia :)
They are both learning from the experience, as am I. Isn't pack bonding a wonderful thing? We humans could learn a thing or two about the dog's social hierarchy.
Sophia will be staying with us until she finds her furever home. Until then we will give her all the lubbins and warm places she needs to rest her weary head..
Thanks to everyone for coming out to support our event this weekend!
We raised a lot of much needed funds for our homeless pugs, and had a GREAT TIME doing it!!
Here are some highlights from our fundraiser...
I am looking forward to hosting our 3rd annual Pugs and Kisses event this weekend!
Stop by to visit our Curly Tail Pug Rescue peeps and pugs if you are in the area!
We will have a pug kissing booth - $1.00 per kiss.
And Professional Pet Portraits - $15.00 each.
All proceeds benefit our rescue pugs!
Here is Mox modeling some of the fun doggy accessories we will have on hand for the pet photo shoot... Yes, I do love torturing her so :)
This was Moxie's Petfinder profile picture when I adopted her.
As you can see, her left eye hadn't been removed yet though it is noticeably cloudy and ulcerated. I don't know much about Moxie's past before I adopted her, but I do know this could have been prevented and her eye could have been saved..
We suspect her previous owners never treated her eye injury, perhaps because they couldn't afford it or maybe didn't care.
For all I know she could have been a stray and the injury occurred while she was wandering the streets alone, in search of food which would also explain why she is in a constant state of hunger at all times!
Whatever events led to it, she was abandoned and somehow found her way to the animal shelter with a bleeding ruptured eye which by that point had sustained so much damage, there was zero vision left in it. The only thing for the rescue vet to do at that point was to remove it completely.
I try to use this blog for good and to raise awareness of important issues. My hope for this article is that it saves just one pug's eye! That alone would make my last 8 years of blogging worth it.
I hope Moxie's story serves as an important reminder to all pug owners to please take emphatic care of your pugs eyes and watch them like hawks.
Please know that the slightest scratch from the family cat or bump from playing too rough, or even a pug's own eyelashes or nasal fold hairs poking into the protruding pug's eye can cause corneal ulcers, leading to serious damage beyond repair..
The key to saving a delicate pug's eye in all of these situations is always time. Time is of the essence when it comes to pug eye injuries.
If you know or suspect your pug's eye may be injured or see any sign of cloudiness or redness or anything looking askew - please do not delay. Take your pug to the vet immediately.
If you fear that you cannot afford medical treatment, you can talk to your vet about making payment arrangements. Many vets will work with you to come up with a payment schedule.
If this is not an option, please contact your local pug rescue organization for assistance. There is one in every state. If your state is not listed here, you can go to Google and type in "pug rescue [NAME OF STATE]" to locate the one nearest you.
Eye injuries and or eye illness caught early enough can be successfully treated and repaired.
Of course, it doesn't matter to me how Moxie looks now, only that she is happy and healthy, which she is. I love her just the same and all the more for what she has had to endure and how she has taken it all in stride.
It is a lesson in adaptation, ego, and vanity that we humans could all learn from.
As far as I'm concerned she is perfect and beautiful just the way she is now.
At the same time though - I would be lying if I said I didn't look at this picture from time to time and feel a bit sad for what could have been, because it was't fair to her!!
Please take good care of your pug's eyes....keep them healthy and free from injury.
One year ago I had to say goodbye to my sweet little Plummy bear.
I know it was her time to go and I feel good that I was able to show this creature the love she deserved in her last year and 1/2 that she probably lacked her entire life.
For which, she repaid me one hundred fold.
But I still miss her dearly.
I am on my 4th pug now (and have known a lot of others in the last 20 years), and each one is and was special in their own unique ways.
Plummy was special in so many ways, you can read through her archives here on my blog under the Pug Rescue category to see all of them.
Most special to me are the memories in my heart of a gentle, peaceful soul who, once able to let her guard down and trust again, knew no limits of joy and love.
That was a big lesson for one little pug to teach someone who needed to learn it.
I am happy to announce that Moxie is one of the featured pugs in our Curly Tail Pug Rescue Wine Store!
Moxie appears on our Merlot bottle, here is her label!
For reds, I am normally more of a Pinot Noir girl, but it looks like I will be drinking a lot of Merlot this year!!
We are also currently holding a Wine Contest, where you can submit a photo of your pug for a chance to have them appear on a bottle of our 2012 wine, to also be sold in our wine store!
You may email your photos to me at Lori@curlytailpugrescue.org - but hurry tomorrow is the last day for photo submissions!
You can learn more about our contest here: Wine Contest Rules
Or you can simply go here to vote for your favorite pugs: Wine Contest VOTING
Of course you can always go straight to our Wine Store to purchase Moxie's Merlot or any of our fabulous wines. They are all vegan, 100% organic, and all proceeds benefit our homeless pugs.
Great Wine for an even Greater Cause!
The petition will ask the President to close the current regulatory loophole and require large-scale, commercial breeders who sell puppies online and directly to the public to be covered by USDA's Animal Welfare Act regulations, including minimum standards for humane care and treatment.
This will help to protect consumers from unknowingly buying sick puppies from inhumane facilities and help to eliminate the horrible conditions in large-scale puppy mills.
Please take a minute to sign the petition today!
I don't know where this came from so I can't give credit but I saw it going around facebook the other day and loved it so I had to share.
mox·ie [mok-see] n. Slang
1. The ability to face difficulty with spirit and courage.
2. vigor; verve; pep.
3. Aggressive energy; initiative: " The girl has moxie , you gotta give her that."
Introducing...my new little sweatheart!
"Sarah" as the shelter workers named her, was abandoned outside of an animal shelter in the middle of the night, presummably by her former owners.
Both of her eyes were infected, inlflammed, and bleeding and she had a temperature of 104. Poor Sarah must have been very confused about where she was and why she was forced to leave the only home and people she had probably ever known, and scared to be left outside in the cold half blind and in a lot of pain.
Despite the poor condition they found her in, Sarah was a little trooper and displayed nothing but a very positive, bubbly and courageous attitude through her ordeal.
Luckily a rescue organization intervened - pulled Sarah from the shelter and got her prompt medical attention for her eyes.
Sarah was diagnosed with a severe corneal ulceration in her left eye, most likely from an injury that was never treated. The vet determined that Sarah had zero vision in her infected left eye so the best course of action was to have it surgically removed. Fortunately,
Sarah still had full vision in her right eye and they were able to save that one in time.
While she is still adjusting to her new monocular world, Sarah is a perfectly normal, healthy and happy spirited young pug in every other way. She does not let her circumstances or the fact that she only has one eye bring her down in the slightest.
And I didn't let it I stop me from adopting her and giving her a forever home and a forever place in my heart.
Because of her strong pug will and courageousness, I have decided to name her "Moxie". Cause, she has a lot of it.
There is still time left! We are accepting photo submissions of your pugs until August 31st!!
Back by popular demand, the 2012 Curly Tail Calendar Contest has begun....
Submit your pug's photo for a chance to be in the calendar!!
The photo submissions are rolling in and I can tell you personally there is going to be some stiff competition this year! All of the entrants are sooo adorable, but maybe your pug has what it takes to win the votes!
Read the details on how to submit your photos here:
I've been thinking about Plummy a lot lately.
I mean I think about her and my other deceased pugs (Pugsley and Norman) everyday anyway, but Plummy I've been ruminating about more than usual.
I am just now able to look back at some of her pictures without getting too sad and I remembered this one taken on an unusually balmy November afternoon when she was nearing the end and the Dr.'s actually told me I should put her down.
So I took her out to some of my favorite nature spots and we just had quiet time to think and "be"....it was right after our nature outing that she turned a corner and rallied to stay with me. I think she realized that I wasn't quite ready to let her go...and she wasn't ready to leave me either.
After that outing she miraculously began eating on her own again and seemed very peaceful and spry. She stayed strong for 2 more months after this (right up until the end) and it was the most beautiful, calm, compassionate, and loving 2 months I believe of her life, and probably of my life too.
Looking back at this photo now with a different perspective it reminds me of the blog header I had conceived of years before, after Pugsley passed and I imagined him somewhere in another universe wandering around looking for me, and while I was glad he was free from the cancer and the pain... and I had raised him up in mind and heart, walking on water even...it always made me a little sad to think of him lost and alone. Maybe because that's how I was feeling without him and as his mama, I wanted to protect him and didn't want him to ever feel that kind of ache.
But now I look at the two pictures side by side and I can see what was really going on that day; I was preparing Plummy for her next journey and I think I may have even told her that she needed to go be with her pug brother and keep him company for a while, until we could all be together again one day.
It's funny, I can see so clearly now that my mind and my heart had unknowingly created this scenerio and the universe and everything in it here and in the hereafter, followed my lead.
I can see it now in the reflection of the water and the reflection of our hearts, something about the rueful colors of the November sky, the time of day, and the uneven hills rolling up behind.. Just her and I, communicating with no words but feeling exactly in our souls what was in that moment and what was to be, beyond.... It is simply too divine to not be true.
And then I knew from somewhere deep inside that no matter what, none of us would ever really be alone.
And nothing could ever come between our bond, not even death.
It fills me with a great sense of peace, and knowing, and pride.
So I finally got to meet the infamous Sophia this weekend!
She was everything I expected her to be, and more!
I only wish my iPhone 3 (sans flash and blur correction) didn't suck so bad at taking pictures to better capture the historic moment.
Happy Birthday Sophia!
Sophia, our Curly Tail Pug Rescue mascot and the pug who started it all... turns 3 years old TODAY!
Sophia's story has been one of faith, perseverance, miracles and a whole lotta love & spunk.
We started with little Sophia as a 2.5lb nugget with spinal bifida and a dangerous bubble on her back near the spinal cord...
And 3 years later we have a healthy, happy, incredible fireball and an entire rescue behind her.
If you would like to give Sophia a birthday present to help give her diapers, baby powder, her Rx food and denim diaper wraps please click the link below:
Hey fellow dog lovers! I am happy to announce that for a limited time only we are selling the Curly Tail "Songs that Save" CD Rescue Remix for just $9.99 + s/h!
Brought to you by Curly's miracle puppies: Sophia, Butter, and Flannery!
Track # 1 "I Will Survive" - "extended version as sung by Frank the Pug" from the Men In Black film!!
Track # 18 "Upside Down" by Jack Johnson - Sophia's Personal Theme Song
and much, much more!!
Click here to go to iTunes and preview all of the songs! http://c.itunes.apple.com/us/imix/curly-tails-rescue-remix/id440373643
Fellow dog lovers - I am excited to announce a little project I have been working on for about a year now is finally done and ready for public consumption!
The official Curly Tail's Rescue Remix - "SONGS THAT SAVE" CD is complete and ready to ship out!
We are running a contest that starts today and will run for 2 weeks.
All of the songs are dog / rescue themed!
All proceeds from the donations will go directly to our Curly Tail Pug Rescue pugs in need!.
5 lucky winners will be chosen from a raffle drawing. Simply make a donation in any amount and each $1.00 of your donation will count as 1 raffle ticket.
You can preview the songs on my iTunes account here: http://c.itunes.apple.com/us/imix/curly-tails-rescue-remix/id440373643
Visit the Curly Tail website for a full list of contest details!!
Despite all the tragedies lately, I am so pleased to be a part of the pug rescue. It is such an exciting time and there are so many amazing things happening. All because I belong to a group of truly devoted, passionate pug lovers who have all come together with the same mission; to help pugs in need.
After many, many, months of filing the necessary legal paperwork, Curly Tail has officially become a 501c3 Non Profit!! Yipee!! This will help so much with our fundraising opportunities. In the process I am super honored to have been selected as an official Curly Tail board member. It has always been one of my dreams and personal milestones.
In my obituary I want it to say, "Author, Animal Rescuer." I can now officially claim one of those titles.
Also this week one of our senior pugs, Wilson was featured in People Magazines online edition of "People's Pets" How awesome is that? The article is really cute the way they put the Royal Couple spin on it.
I don't know why this sweet old boy hasn't been adopted yet, but hopefully the press will help!
Of course the added exposure just equates to us being able to help even more pugs!
All of this reminds me of a quote from Helen Keller:
"Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it."
I feel that my special pug angels: Sausage, Plummy, and little Norman would be proud.
A Happy Passover and Easter to all.
Going into this, I knew a few things:
1.) I can't go without having a pug in my life for long. I have withdrawals. I feel nervous and ungrounded. I miss the companionship and pug love way too much. I am simply a healthier, brighter person when I have a dog in my life. They help me stay grounded and live in the present moment. They are great teachers, little confidants and comedians.
2.) As much as I love and adore the seniors and will continue to foster and rescue them - I knew after losing 2 beloved seniors in such a short time frame that I could not put myself through that loss emotionally again anytime soon. That meant my next pug would need to be young and healthy so he or she would be with me a long, long time.
3.) I would NOT adopt from a pet store or ever "shop" for a puppy, putting money back into the puppy millers pockets. Basically enabling them to continue their horrific treatment and crimes against animals. So I knew I would adopt from a shelter or rescue when the right one came along.
4.) Plummy taught me after losing the Sausage that it was ok to open my heart to another pug again. That the key to healing, is actually love. I also knew that neither the Sausage nor Plummy would want me to be sad or lonely for pug love, especially when there are so many homeless out there in need.
But how to know when it is the right one?
I first saw Norman while perusing the hundreds of sad little homeless pug faces on Petfinder..
It still blows me away how any pug could possibly be homeless. It seems impossible, but sadly, so so many are. That's the reason I rescue.
Norman was listed by Help Save One, a wonderful all-breed rescue organization that works tirelessly to save dogs from being gassed in high kill shelters and they pull dogs from some of the worst puppy mills. We have worked with them before on some Curly Tail puppy mill rescue cases so I felt really comfortable adopting from this organization.
As soon as I saw Norman's picture and where he was from, I contacted HSO straight away. I didn't use any special rescue treatment though; I went through the normal proper channels as any potential adopter would and just let what happen, may.
Norman wasn't the first pug I had applied for - most of my other applications got passed over, the dogs were too far away or the shelters never got back to me so I assume they were inundated with applications because it is very rare to get a healthy pug puppy in a shelter or rescue.
To my surprise, I was contacted by the head of HSO (who was also fostering Norman) within an hour of sending my email. I found out from her that Norman was pulled from a puppy mill in Ohio - he was one of the lucky ones.
Norman's foster mom had never fostered a pug puppy before and she has quickly gotten attached to the little guy and wasn't going to adopt him out to just anyone. She received a ton of inquiries and applications and didn't like any of them except mine.
Then we started talking more and she found out who I was... it turns out unbeknownst to me, she had been following Plum's story all along on the pug rescue website and when she found out I was the one who took care of Plummy and ultimately adopted her, she burst into tears! She was so thrilled I contacted her because, as she put it - she knew right then and there that there would be no better home for Norman than me :)
Moreover, she wanted me to have Norman as a gift for taking such good care of Plum in her final days and for showing her true love.
The happy ending is that ultimately, Norman is a gift from Plum. That's how I knew he was meant to be mine.
My heart feels so full knowing all of this, and I haven't even met the little guy yet.
My new baby!
I am getting him next week..
Lots of Norman stories to follow--including the unbelievable story of how he came to be mine :)
Puppy Mills are despicable. I wish I had more power within myself to work towards getting them all shut down and put out of business. I would make it my life's work and mission if I knew how.
Instead I just plod along day by day just trying to help in the small ways that I am able to make a difference - getting the word out and volunteering for an animal rescue organization. Taking part in mill rescues, and pledging to never "buy" a dog from a pet store again when there are so so many in shelters and rescues needing homes.
No matter how much I would love to bring home a cuddly fluffy perfect little pug puppy tomorrow - I refuse to ever "shop" for a dog at a pet store - knowing full well that doing so only puts money back into the pockets of these puppy mill outfits, basically funding their horrific operations. Perpetuating the crime. Ultimately Causing more innocent animals to suffer.
I hope you, the reader will take that pledge to do the same. If everyone took a stand and stopped buying puppies from pet stores then the millers would be forced to shut down. No supply, no demand. No demand, no supply.
One person can't make a difference here but united pet lovers can.
Sadly, Pugs are one of the breeds that are treated worst in puppy mills. The pug puppies are high in demand and the evil puppy mill mongers take advantage of them in every unspeakable way.
It's stuff like this that makes me lose my faith in humanity at times.
On a positive note these were some of the lucky dogs to make it out alive in a recent mill rescue.
I recently read an article which stated something I kind of already knew at a mammalian brain level. Scientific research has shown that petting a dog everyday releases the stress hormone, cortisol.
And living with a dog increases Oxytocin levels (that feel-good "love" hormone). In fact just by having a dog look at you, you get the rush of love hormones.
It totally makes total sense then why my stress levels are so high now, they are causing violent muscle spasms that are actually rotating the vertebrae in my neck.
All this explains my current predicament. Here Plummy (and the Sausage before her) were working hard to keep my cortisol levels at bay while my Oxytocin levels were raised just by having them near.
My theory - Now that is gone and the total opposite has happened. The love hormone disappeared and the stress hormones have taken over.
Life without a dog is very strange to me. And I am a stranger in it.
It has been one month since my sweet Plum has been gone. In some ways it seems like just yesterday and in other ways it feels like forever.
When Plum first came to me in June 2009, she was riddled with health problems. And for the entire time I had her, it seemed we were at the vet's office with some new ailment and I don't exaggerate a bit when I say that I spent the whole year and 7 months trying so hard to fix all of her medical problems.
Of everything she had going on, I was sure it would be something else that did her in: her terrible allergies, her chronic infections, her reproductive issues, her heart condition, her colitis, etc. etc.
Never did I imagine with all those trips to the vet, with all the bloodwork and XRAYS and surgeries, all the office visits and urine checks and stool samples that something as big as kidney failure could sneak by undetected and destroy her within 4 months of her initial diagnosis.
That's the thing about kidney failure in dogs. In most cases (as was the case with Plum) there are virtually no symptoms of the disease until it has progressed to the point where the kidneys have been damaged beyond repair, usually to where they have lost 75% of their functionality.
If anything good can come out of this I would like it to be a warning to other dog owners, of all breeds, of all ages to have your dog checked for kidney disease and maybe save a life or prolong a life. Because it wasn't something I was aware of or I would have been more proactive.
All dog owners should know that routine blood work and checkups at the vet won't detect kidney disease. Even when more advanced blood work and testing is done -like the kind they do before a dog undergoes surgery to check their organs, won't necessarily pick up on it. Neither will the senior wellness checks that they bag you $200 a year for.
To verify if your dog might have a problem, request a full kidney panel from your vet including Creatinine, BUN, Calcium and phosphorus ratios - not just a normal CBC blood workup.
In addition to the bloodwork you should have your dog's urine checked for - not just checked for infections or bacteria, make sure they check the protein and urine specific gravities and make sure they look at all the values of blood and urine together. Normally they won't do this unless the dog is showing signs of advanced kidney disease, when it's too late.
It would also be a good idea to get your dog's blood pressure checked - elevated BP can be a warning sign of kidney trouble brewing.
I know that for me personally, for any dogs I own in the future I will have the test done regularly so I can be more proactive next time. The disease is controllable by diet and medication if it is caught earlier enough. And I think I would have the tests run on my dogs at any age, not just seniors.
A friend of mine recently lost her 2 year old Australian shepherd to kidney failure which it got as result of contracting Lyme Disease.
Certain medications like prednisone can also cause permanent kidney damage to dogs as well, even if they are only the medication for a week or two.
In Plum's case, by the time it was detected she had lost over 80% of her kidney function, was unresponsive to medications, diet changes, and fluid therapy - and she was gone exactly 4 months from the day she was diagnosed. I hear similar timeframes from many other people who had lost dogs to CRF.
It hurts to know I could have had even an extra month or two with her had it been detected earlier, that additional time would have meant the world to me. I am sure others who have lost dogs to this disease feel the same way.
For more information on dogs with kidney disease here is an excellent resource site: http://www.dogaware.com/health/kidney.html
This story reminded me of Plummy's past, and how she came to be with me. How she most likely would have ended up had I not pulled her from that kill shelter in the summer of '09.
Reading this just makes me want to go right out and rescue another pug who has been abandoned by his family. And another one, and another one, and another. As many pugs as I can fit in my house. I may become a pug hoarder one of these days and you'll end up seeing my sad story on Animal Planet.
Have tissues handy..
How Could You?
By Jim Willis
When I was a puppy, I entertained you with my antics and made you laugh. You called me your child and despite a number of chewed shoes and a couple of murdered throw pillows, I became your best friend. Whenever I was "bad," you'd shake your finger at me and ask "How could you?" - but then you'd relent and roll me over for a bellyrub.
My housetraining took a little longer than expected, because you were terribly busy, but we worked on that together. I remember those nights of nuzzling you in bed, listening to your confidences and secret dreams, and I believed that life could not be any more perfect. We went for long walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I only got the cone because "ice cream is bad for dogs," you said), and I took long naps in the sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the day.
Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on your career, and more time searching for a human mate. I waited for you patiently, comforted you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided you about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when you fell in love.
She, now your wife, is not a "dog person" - still I welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her. I was happy because you were happy. Then the human babies came along and I shared your excitement. I was fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted to mother them, too. Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I spent most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate. Oh, how I wanted to love them, but I became a "prisoner of love."
As they began to grow, I became their friend. They clung to my fur and pulled themselves up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes, investigated my ears and gave me kisses on my nose. I loved everything about them, especially their touch - because your touch was now so infrequent - and I would have defended them with my life if need be.
I would sneak into their beds and listen to their worries and secret dreams. Together we waited for the sound of your car in the driveway. There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog, that you produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me. These past few years, you just answered "yes" and changed the subject. I had gone from being your dog to "just a dog," and you resented every expenditure on my behalf.
Now you have a new career opportunity in another city and you and they will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets. You've made the right decision for your "family," but there was a time when I was your only family.
I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the animal shelter. It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness. You filled out the paperwork and said "I know you will find a good home for her." They shrugged and gave you a pained look. They understand the realities facing a middle-aged dog or cat, even one with "papers."
You had to pry your son's fingers loose from my collar as he screamed "No, Daddy! Please don't let them take my dog!" And I worried for him and what lessons you had just taught him about friendship and loyalty, about love and responsibility, and about respect for all life. You gave me a goodbye pat on the head, avoided my eyes, and politely refused to take my collar and leash with you. You had a deadline to meet and now I have one, too.
After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably knew about your upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another good home. They shook their heads and asked "How could you?"
They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their busy schedules allow. They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago. At first, whenever anyone passed my pen, I rushed to the front, hoping it was you - that you had changed your mind - that this was all a bad dream...or I hoped it would at least be someone who cared, anyone who might save me. When I realized I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of happy puppies, oblivious to their own fate, I retreated to a far corner and waited.
I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of the day and I padded along the aisle after her to a separate room. A blissfully quiet room. She placed me on the table, rubbed my ears and told me not to worry. My heart pounded in anticipation of what was to come, but there was also a sense of relief. The prisoner of love had run out of days. As is my nature, I was more concerned about her. The burden which she bears weighs heavily on her and I know that, the same way I knew your every mood.
She gently placed a tourniquet around my foreleg as a tear ran down her cheek. I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort you so many years ago. She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my vein. As I felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body, I lay down sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured "How could you?"
Perhaps because she understood my dogspeak, she said "I'm so sorry." She hugged me and hurriedly explained it was her job to make sure I went to a better place, where I wouldn't be ignored or abused or abandoned, or have to fend for myself - a place of love and light so very different from this earthly place.
With my last bit of energy, I tried to convey to her with a thump of my tail that my "How could you?" was not meant for her. It was you, My Beloved Master, I was thinking of. I will think of you and wait for you forever.
Adopt - Don't Shop
It occurred to me the other day that if a dog's year is the equivalent of 7 years to every 1 human year - that means even though Plummy and I only had 1 year and 7 months to spend together - from her perspective it was like we spent 11 years together!!
That thought was very comforting to me.
I' have been going through a ton of photos of my Plummy. Just seeing her sweet face and recalling all the special times we shared together makes me feel better too.
Here are some of my favorite memories from our last "11" years together :)
Click HERE to view the entire album.
I miss her silly little crooked grin that pushed her right cheek wrinkle over to the side. The one I saw in the church pew in the shadow of my praying hands the day I knew I was going to keep her.
I miss her freakishly long nails clicking and clacking all throughout the house. I always knew where she was and when she was coming.
I miss how she would steal my spot on the couch and in bed the minute I would get up for something. I could always count on her being in my spot when I returned.
I miss her stealing my heating pad too; she would plop herself down on it and usually, I just let her have it.
I miss her Smooshy face smells.
I miss how cuddly and affectionate she was, a little love sponge, really.
I miss how she would be in the home gym during my workouts, like a little personal trainer. During my planks she would always come over and stand under my belly as I held myself up into the plank position. She was the perfect height between the floor and my stomach - it was like she put herself there to spot me.
I miss how she would remain perfectly still and petrified during her baths but the minute it was over and she hit the floor, she would savagely attack the bath towel. Suppressed rage that she could no longer contain.
I miss brushing her and how much she loved to be brushed. Especially when I used the brush to give her a massage. She would almost go into a deep trance.
I miss her snorts, grunts, howls, growls, barks, cries, sighs, and snores.
I miss cuddling with her in my bed. She always had to be under the covers at the top, always off to my left side with her head wedged between the 2 pillows - my hand always clutching the long furry skin roll that folded over her belly and spanned the entire length of her right side. I never realized it until it was gone, but that furry little skin roll had become my security blanket of sorts... I feel so lost now that it's gone.
I miss her sweet pug kisses and lubbins. She was especially sweet and lovey in the morning.
I miss all the little ways she would always surprise me - on walks for instance, she would be moving at a snail's pace but then out of nowhere she would get a sudden burst of energy, taking off in a canter with no warning.. Or how she was hardly ever into playing with toys but every once in a blue moon she would stick her head into the toy box, pick out a toy, start whipping it around, and get the "growlies" at me if I tried to pretend like I was taking it from her.
I miss watching her sleep with the tip of her pink tongue poking out.
I miss our daily couch ritual. We would start with me at one end and her at the other. I would build a comfy fort of pillows and blankets, then flip over onto my side facing the TV. She, sat perched on the other side - tail wagging, eyes all agleam just waiting for me to get situated so she could lunge over the mountain of blankets and make her way to the "puggy nook".
The puggy nook is where she lay with her chin resting on my right arm and her body pressed up against my side. I would always dangle a little extra blanket over the side of the couch so when she got into position I would wrap it around and swaddle her like a baby. I knew she was kept crated and neglected in her former life and I wanted to make her feel as close and cozy as possible. Of course, I loved it too. The puggy nook was her favorite place to be. Most times she couldn't wait for me to give her the cue - she was desperately trying to force herself through the blankets to get to me..
As time went on and she grew weaker, it became more difficult for her to climb over my legs and the mound of blankets. To her - it must have seemed like scaling Kilimanjaro, but she did it just the same.
Near the end when she was so sick and weak that she could barely walk, she still sat on her side of the couch waiting with that little hopeful gleam in her eye. She would take a step or two but knew she couldn't make it. Her body had become very delicate and frail so I gently picked her up and placed her in the puggy nook.
Once her chin hit the tuck of my elbow she always let out a little peaceful sigh. Oh how I miss those little sighs..
This was the last thing we did together. We lay down on the couch in her puggy nook for about an hour just before she passed. And it was lovely.
I miss coming home and not seeing her there jumping off the couch running over to me with a wagging tail and sparkly eyes. This is possibly the hardest thing to bear.
This, the skin roll, and the puggy nook.
"A good dog never dies. He always stays. He walks beside you on crisp autumn days when frost is on the fields and winter's drawing near. His head is within our hand in his old way."
~ Mary Carolyn Davies
It is with a heavy heart that I tell you my sweet Plummy has gone to the bridge after a brave and valiant fight. She stayed longer than anyone thought she could, because of Love.
Even though we only had 1 1/2 years together, I feel truly blessed to have had her in my life for that time. I said it once and will say it again. She rescued me as much as I rescued her.
Plummy's departure was very peaceful. She was in the comfort of her own house, in her mama's arms knowing right up until the end how very loved she is. I spent a good long time beforehand snuggling with her on the couch in our favorite position. Gently saying all the things that needed to be said out loud even though they were understood with one look exchanged between her big brown eye and my little green one.
I told her that her journey here was coming to an end, and that it was time for her to go be with her pug brother, Pugsley now. Where I know he will take good care of her and show her all around. I told my sweet girl that she will never be itchy again, or sick, or weak. I told her how much I will miss everything about her and we said many goodbyes. When the time actually came there was nothing left to say but one more, I love you.
Sorry for the lack of updates lately. Life has been super hectic. I hope to get back to a normal blogging schedule soon when things calm down a bit.
Many of you have continued to ask about Plum...I just posted her latest update below on the pug rescue website.
A very happy New Year to you all!
Plum continues to amaze everyone with her strong heart and fighting spirit.
Despite the odds she remains happy, comfortable, and content in her everyday life.
Her forever foster mom was thrilled that she was able to spend the holidays with her special girl! Rest assured there was lots of spoiling going on. A full stocking hung on the mantle, lots of friends and family over to visit and ogle her, and just quality time soaking up all the love that she so deserves.
Plum is also enjoying her home cooked meals that are made especially for her kidney disease with only low phosphorus, low sodium ingredients and added crushed eggshells for calcium that act as a phosphorus binder which her body needs.
Her favorites are homemade savory stew made with sodium free beef bouillon and roasted chicken and turkey legs mixed with skin, white rice, veggies, and hard-boiled egg whites. One of the advantages of eating a restricted home cooked kidney diet is she gets to have the dark fatty parts of the meat, they are actually GOOD for her!
Most dogs in kidney failure have trouble maintaining their weight, but in the last month Plummy has actually gained a few pounds and is now up to a solid 15.3lbs. She was down to 12.8Lbs just 2 months ago.
Plummy's appetite is strong, she is even barking at her forever foster mom at mealtimes now because she can't eat fast enough. Quite the change from November when she had to be force fed with a plastic syringe.
Her body tremors have decreased as well and now only on occasion her front leg will shimmy a little if she puts extra weight on it.
3 weeks ago Plumy did have a seizure. This happens in dogs with kidney failure when they become uremic. When the toxins that their bodies can no longer filter out, build up and reach the brain and spinal cord, seizures can occur.
Fortunately the seizure did not last long, only about 20 seconds in total and she snapped back out if it quickly. Within 5 minutes she was back to her normal self and she has not had another one since.
We continue to take Plummy's guarded condition day by day, feeling most grateful and blessed for everyday that she is still here and is still happy and content, living the life that she has always deserved.
Plum has made one thing clear - she will ride this wave and continue to soak up the love for as long as she possibly can!
We thank you all who have supported and continue to support and ask for Plum.
With much love and happiness in the new year!
It is amazing how well Plum is doing despite her condition and the grave prognosis they gave me. I am so happy I did not listen to the vets and end her journey one month ago when they said I should. According to the doctors she shouldn't be alive....but I beg to differ.
She is presently holding her own with daily home cooked low sodium, low phosphorus meals, 30 mg of Cerenia for her stomach, calcium supplements, drinking lots of water and getting lots and lots of Lubbins.
Her quality if life is off the charts right now.
Lately she's even been taunting me with her toys. Her favorite game is to have me pretend that I'm going to steal the toy from her so she can curl her lip and wait for her move to lunge and attack my hand. Of course she doesn't make contact with her teeth, she just pretends to :)
Many of you have asked how she is doing, I posted this short clip so you can see for yourself.
There's been a lot of cuddling going on here lately. The other day Plum fell asleep with her paw resting directly over my heart - and stayed like that for a long time.
I think it was her way of telling me that she loves me and thanks me for rescuing her.
She is still fighting, and staying strong.
And eating a lot of meat loaf.
The last week has been touch and go. Plummy became weak and stopped eating, she started spiraling downhill. Her blood work revealed her kidney values are sky high, despite the iv fluids, medications, and all measures. The vet said there is nothing more they can do, they gave me their on call number so they could come here last weekend and help her end her journey, peacefully.
Since then I haven't left her side and have been doing everything I can to keep her happy and strong. In turn she has been responding and fighting back.
She didn't want to eat but she took food from a plastic syringe that I fed her several times a day, lapping it up like she was nursing from a bottle and it was enough to sustain her. She started drinking a ton of water to hydrate herself. She wakes every two hour in the night to get up and drink water, I help her off the bed as she can no longer jump down and is too unsteady on her feet to trust her stepper. She's drinking enough to stay hydrated and her gums are still pink.
I've taken her on car rides so she can feel the warm sun her face. Her tail started wagging again and remains curled most of the time.
Her trembling episodes from the neurotoxins building up in her bloodstream have ceased over the last few days and miraculously, she has started eating on her own again.
The other night she started playing with a toy that she's never touched before, she was shaking it and throwing it at me like she wanted to play tug of war. She even got the growlies and her will to stay strong and stay with me, moved me to tears.
The Dr's are looking at the numbers on a medical chart and saying she should no longer be here. But what they don't see is her continuing to fight everyday, they don't see that she is still happy and has a good quality of life. She is in no pain or suffering, she is still eating and drinking and loving.
I know that can all change tomorrow and I'll have to make the call, or pray that God takes her so I don't have to.
I can't explain it other than to say as her master who knows her best that it can only be her strong spirit, love, and strength of heart that continues to power her on. She has truly become an inspiration to me, and I am thankful for every moment we have together.
"Dogs are our link to paradise. They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring - it was peace."
~ Milan Kundera
Plummy made the cover of the 2011 Curly Tail Calendar!
We decided to feature our 3 forever foster pugs - Mr. P. (may he rest in peace), Sophia, and Plummy on the cover, along with the 24 finalists -including the infamous Emily the Biker Pug!
You can visit the Curly Tail Pug Rescue Website to see all the winners!
The calendar will be available for ordering soon! I will post a follow up order link when it is ready :)
How else do you get through things?
Thanks again for all the well wishes, prayers and support for Plummy.
She responded well to her treatment - her BUN value is back down to 80 post iv fluid therapy, not great but we will take it. Now it's a wait/see how long we can keep her at this level before it creep back up again. We've also added a phosphorus binder, (praying for no allergic reaction) and I am doing my best to get more fluids into her at home.
She certainly feels MUCH better after the treatment, her tail has been curled since she got home, she's been smirking, and cuddling and resting VERY comfortably. Soooo glad to be back in the puggy nook where she belongs.
That makes two of us.
Please send some prayers and good thoughts for my poor Plummy.
Her kidney values have gotten worse, her BUN number close to doubled over a 1 month period. She went from 80 which is already high to 149! Her CREATIN and Phosphorus is also super high. The Dr. wants to admit her tomorrow AM and begin IV cath fluid therapy and a phosphorus binder. And they want to teach me how to give her Sub C fluids at home.
Knowing that kidney failure is not reversible and that most dogs don't even present with symptoms of kidney failure until the kidneys are already 85% non-functioning (Plummy).....the prognosis does not look good.
Let the roller coaster ride begin. again.
My poor little doll.
No. Not THAT kind of nipples.
I mean, this kind:
I am wondering what to do about baby bottle nipples since I have absolutely no experience in baby bottles but I need to get more liquid into Plum for her kidneys.
Someone suggested I try giving her goats milk or broth in a baby bottle BUT because she is allergic to EVERYTHING I am too afraid to give her the latex nipple and or the silicone nipple.
These seem to be the only 2 varieties on the market, in the stores and at the pharmacies.
My question is do they MAKE a hypoallergenic nipple for baby bottles?
And if so where in the Sam hell can I find one??
So I have been super busy working on pug rescue org. business lately. Most immediately, running the 1st Annual 2011 Curly Tail Calendar Contest!
Apologies if I haven't responded to your emails, comments, etc.
Alas, the voting has begun..and now all the real BUT FUN work starts!
You can go check out all the awesome, adorable, touching photos that our followers submitted here : curlytailpugrescue.org
Make sure you check out Group 3: curlytailpugrescue.org/2011calendar/group3 and if you feel so inclined, cast your vote for the Sausage and Plummy :)
The top 13 pug photos with the most votes will appear in the 2011 Curly Tail Pug Rescue Calendar!!
This contest proved one thing to me.....there are A LOT of crazyfortheirpugs people in the world. I just happen to be one of them!
Because seriously.....you haven't been owned until you've been owned by a pug.
So good to be among my kind.
P.S. Show some love to Emily the Biker Pug and Sunshine too!
Plum had a bad allergic reaction to her kidney medication Enalapril. She broke out with these big hive type blood blisters all over her mouth and her neck and feet are also a mess :(
We now have to strip her off of all new medication for a month while we treat the secondary infection it caused and get her cleared up again. Oy.
For now all I can do is pump her full of the maximum dosage of Benadryl possible and try to keep her comfortable. .Easier said than done, poor baby is crawling out of her skin. At least the Benadryl makes her sleepy and the only time she doesn't itch herself is when she's asleep.
Plum's allergies are flaring again (among other things). She just will not stop biting her feet or scratching her neck so I decided to take some drastic measures..
Tonight after her Oxydex bath I slathered on some Resicort and bound her feet with ace bandages.
I wish I had thought of this months ago.
On a more serious note, the vet did confirm renal failure, stage 2. They used the term "guarded prognosis" which I had not heard since they told me of Pugsley's cancer diagnosis 4 years ago. It has been a rough couple of weeks but we are both fighters and will never give up.
Please send some prayers and good thoughts for my Plummy.
Thanks for your support.
What can I say about my little rescue girl Plum? She has been somewhat of a train wreck "medically" in the last year since she came to me from the shelter where her days were numbered.
After a full year of trying to rehabilitate I now believe from so many years of neglect in her past that her poor little insides have just suffered too much damage for her to ever be 100% right. It's all about day by day with her and managing each condition as best we can.
Still - she is awake and alive and she wants to love and be loved. She wants to fill that sad place in my heart with cuddles and snorts and a soft furry body under the covers - and I in turn want nothing more than to give her the best remainder of life that she can have.
Our dynamic is totally different than the one I had with Pugsley. We have a different kind of bond. I am her rescuer and she is my poor little old gal who I'd do anything to help. I have no idea what happened to her for the first 10 years of her life or what she was like as a puppy. Sometimes I catch her in a rare spunky mood and I can see a little glimpse into how precious she must have been as a once healthy young puglet.
On the anniversary of Sausage's passing (sometimes life can be ironic and cruel all at once) I found out Plummy may be in early stage kidney failure. I don't know yet for sure because she is currently battling a UTI w/ blood in urine so the kidney testing has been put on hold until the infection clears, otherwise results would be skewed.
We will do what we can to keep her happy and comfortable and not compromise the quality of her life. I feel that she has suffered enough. I am looking into holistic treatment, nothing toxic or unnatural. The poor old gal has fought long and hard and I still believe she isn't done fighting. What amazes me most about Plummy is for how fragile she seems, she always surprises me by becoming this strong little warrior princess. In retrospect I suppose I should have named her Xena.
Curly Tail Pug Rescue just launched a new program called "Forever Fosters". These are dogs that are deemed unadoptable or simply have too many issues to be adopted out and so they are placed in permanent foster care. This enables Curly Tail to provide veterinary care for these dogs and the foster families provide the love and home.
I have received emails from some of you asking how you could make a donation to help with Plum's care. I'm happy to report that her Chip In has been activated.
Here is a breakdown of her monthly supplies (does not include vet care) any money collected via Plum's chip in will go directly here:
Homecooked Diet: 10 lbs of chicken every two weeks: $30/ x 2 /month = $60
Organic baby food + Bone Meal: $30
Seventh Generation hypoallergenic wipes: $10
Benadryl = $15
Medicated shampoos: Oxydex (anti bacterial), Malesab (antifungal), Resicourt (anti inflammatory): $50
Urine testing: - once per month $52
Natural supplements: Quercetin for allergies, Uromax for UTI: $20
Antibiotic / Probiotic: 1 month supply: $85
Wee pads: $20
Plummy has been added as a Curly Tail Forever Foster, you can check out the page here.The Forever Foster program allows you to help support Plum and other pugs like her. Thank you so much for your support!
The following is not pleasant to look at but is necessary to let everyone know why they should NEVER BUY A DOG FROM CRAIGSLIST.
Curly Tail has assigned volunteers whose job it is to wade through the pages of Craigslist in our area, trying to save as many pugs like these, as we can.
Late on Friday night Curly Tail received a frantic email from a woman who had just purchased two Pugs off of Craigslist. As she put it, she and her family had been "taken on a very expensive ride."
They replied to an ad stating that the owner of two Pugs had no place to live and needed to find a place for her two pugs immediately or else she was going to leave them behind. The well intentioned purchaser received very misleading photos of Mugsy and Carly. The Craigslist seller met her family with Carly and Mugsy in a parking lot. It was explained to us that "once she (the seller) got our money, she jumped in her car and took off."
The distraught email we received said this pair had to be moved immediately because the new owner could clearly see they were in desperate need for major medical care and this was not what she was expecting. She was hoping to purchase 2 healthy pugs and was in for the shock of her life.
This is a classic example of the dangers of purchasing pets from Craigslist! Ads are misleading and you simply never know whom you are really dealing with!
3 year old Carly is sadly in far worse shape than Mugsy. We are pleased that she does not have mange however, what was described as "sensitive skin" is actually a very serious skin issue. This is the result of long time neglect & horrific living conditions. Carly's skin is literally peeling off with infection. She is covered in open sores & oozing wounds from infection. She has elephant skin covering her ears, stomach and limbs. Her whole body is swelled from inflammation and her ears & eyes are oozing with infection as well.
In addition to Carly's "skin issues" (at the time thought to be mange), both dogs had "crust and green goo" coming out of their eyes and it was suspected that Carly recently had a litter of puppies. Both were infested with fleas and their nails were so long they couldn't walk properly.
For the full story on Carly and Mugsy and to find out how you can help, visit the Curly Tail Pug Rescue website today.
I am working on a little fundraising item - creating an all dog song themed CD for the pug rescue org. to both play at events and to use as raffle / contest giveaways.
My goal was to have about 17 songs to fill up the CD but the problem is I have only been able to come up with 12.
So I'm hoping my dog loving readers will be able to step in and offer a few suggestions, for the good of the pugs.
The theme of the CD is "Pug Party Rescue Remix" so the songs can't be anything sad or slow or depressing. It Is an adult CD so kiddie songs like "How much is that doggy in the window", etc. won't really work for the format.
We are looking for upbeat songs that are danceable and / or can be rocked out to. The song can be about dogs (or wolves), contain the word dog in it, or better yet if you can hear dogs barking in the song. The song can also just convey the work we do in rescue for the dogs.
Here are the tracks I've chosen so far:
01. I Will Survive - Frank from the Men In Black movie
02. Atomic Dog - George Clinton
03. Who Let the Dogs Out? - Baha Men
04. Woof! There it is! - Shaggy Dog soundtrack
05. Been Caught Stealin' - Jane's Addiction
06. Black Dog - Led Zeppelin
07. Lil' Red Riding Hood - Sam the Sham and the Pharoah's
08. Hound Dog - Elvis Presley
09. Born to be Wild - Steppenwolf
10. Every Dog Has his Day - Shaggy Dog Soundtrack
11. It's a Dog - Shaggy Dog Soundtrack
12. Rescue Me - Fontella Bass
C'mon guys I know I am missing some good ones that just aren't coming up in my iTunes search - I just need 5 or so more if you have any to recommend.
I thank you, and the pugs thank you.
I am so happy to announce that our Curly Tail Pug Rescue Store is open for business!
We are now offering a nice selection of Curly Tail merchandise including: Baseball caps, T-shirts, Glasses, Mugs, Tote Bags, and more!
Most importantly 100% of the proceeds from the Curly Store cover our product costs & the rest goes directly towards the medical needs of our rescued pugs.
Now you can be styling this fall in some cool Curly Gear ....and help a little puggie out too!
The following story is not pleasant but I have been hearing more and more of these types of horror stories just in the last few weeks, so I feel the need to bring more awareness to the issue, hopefully preventing another tragedy if even one person reads this and it happens to save a life.
I have a friend in the pug rescue community whose friend of hers called last week, she was sobbing and totally bereft.
What happened to her could happen to any one of us.
Her 5 pugs and her elderly foster were outside doing their business. She was inside on the phone with one eye out in the yard on the dogs. After about 10 minutes they started yapping to come in but only 4 came in.
The other two: One of her babies and her foster pug were laying limp in the yard.
There is no need to go into the horror that she experienced. Both dogs had heat stroke. The foster dog and after a struggle in intensive care, her other pug didn't make it either.
Of course she is devastated beyond anything that any of us can comprehend...our heart is breaking for her.
All any of us can do to prevent something like this happening again is to talk about it. Get the word out.
Pugs are a brachycephalic breed. Their short noses make for very compromised respiratory systems.
Pug owners need to understand that anymore than 1 or 2 minutes in temperatures over 80 degrees can be life threatening to any pug, young or old.
This is very serious.
Out of respect for the recent loss and still grieving, I have refrained from mentioning names, dogs or humans. Just know that the story is very real.
A reminder to please read the Pug Summer Tips, on how to keep your pugs (and all short nosed breeds) healthy during the hot summer months: Pass it along.
Stop people on the street you see walking a Brachy breed in the heat or God forbid locked in the car while their owners run even just a quick errand.
Maybe together we can help save a life.
Above all please be responsible and keep your dogs cool this summer.
Drape a cool wet cloth over them if they start to overheat. You could also dip them in a cool bathtub or kiddy pool.
Leave your AC during the day when the house gets the hottest if you are able. If not, leave a fan blowing where they lay. Always leave fresh cold water supply nearby. Sometimes a cool tiled floor is the best place for them to be.
Take them on walks only early in the morning and later in the evening when it is the coolest.
NEVER NEVER NEVER leave them locked in a hot car, not even for a minute.
More information on BRACHYCEPHALIC DOGS (Pug, Boston Terrier, Pekingese, Boxer, Bulldog, Shih tzu or any one of the other breeds with "pushed in" faces) Because of all these upper respiratory obstructions, the brachycephalic dog is an inefficient panter. A dog with a more conventional face and throat is able to pass air quickly over the tongue through panting. Saliva evaporates from the tongue as air is passed across and the blood circulating through the tongue is efficiently cooled and circulated back to the rest of the body.
In the brachycephalic dog, so much extra work is required to move the same amount of air that the airways become inflamed and swollen. This leads to a more severe obstruction, distress, and further over-heating.
I began fostering Plum last June, 2009. She was only my 2nd foster after losing my beloved Sausage.
Adopting another pug was not part of my immediate plan.
Adopting a senior w/ health issues was definitely NOT even part of my extended plan.
As some of my long-term readers will recall it was a rough time in my world. I was laid off from my job, out of work. Still grieving the loss of Pugsley and I had health issues of my own. I was down and out, fallen on hard times. In fact the only good thing I had going for me was the volunteer work I was doing for the pug rescue.
Somewhere in all of that darkness I knew the only way for me to start feeling right again was to do what I knew how to do best, care for a pug. To make a difference in another one's life. As the Sausage would want me to do in honor of his memory. There were after all, so many in need. And I was posting their stories to the rescue website day in and day out. Creating special fliers and thank you cards to donors. Even memorializing those that had passed on the Rainbow Bridge page.
Plummy was in rough shape when she came to me from the kill shelter in Brooklyn. She was literally days away from being destroyed. We were short on foster homes and I had already had the conversation with the rescue leaders that I felt ready to start fostering again. Life just didn't seem normal without a pug in it. I missed having one around. I figured this was a way I could have pugs in my life again and test the waters without being fully committed and giving myself over to one again.
I remember the day the ACC van pulled into my driveway. It was chock full of metal crates stacked one on top of another. Plum's crate was sitting on top of a bruised and battered and rather gaunt looking Great Dane. The driver was a big man wearing a long yellow rawhide glove on his right hand. I guess he wore it to avoid being bitten.
He tried going into Plum's cage to pull her out but she wasn't having it. She was viciously and savagely trying to attack the yellow glove. She was super stressed, bumping up into the metal crate bars - breathing and growling really hard, too afraid to come out to the man. She was clearly emotionally traumatized.
Finally I climbed into the back of the van poked my head into her crate and started talking in a soft reassuring voice. I might have even sung a little song to her. After a while, she stated to calm down and I could see a little smirk emerging on her face. I reached my bare hands inside the cage and coaxed her over to me.
I pulled her out and immediately set her down on the grass which she had clearly never seen or felt before. She squatted and peed and then did several back leg kicks. I turned to the ACC man and said, "Well, she's a kicker!" Then he drove off to make the next delivery of unwanted dogs that were being given a second chance.
I wish I could have helped them all, but I quickly learned that I had my hands full with Plum.
She came with no papers, no records, no toys, no leash, no collar, no food, and no treats. Nothing. Nothing but a lot of problems.
Her entire body was red and inflamed. Her wrinkles and folds and ears were all infected. Her ears were bleeding and puss was oozing from several difference places on her body. She smelled horrible. She was full of open sores and covered with scabs. The color of her fur had a yellowy jaundiced tint to it. She could not stop itching, rubbing and biting herself. She was literally crawling out of her own skin.
Her belly sagged like she had had a few litters of puppies over the years. I guessed her previous keepers used her as a breeder to churn out $1,500 pug puppies year after year. And then when she could no longer breed they dumped her off in the shelter. Clearly they had given her no medical attention for a long time, she was in bad shape and neglect was obvious.
She even looked older than her age.
Each time I bathed her or ran my fingers along her coat to pick off scabs, or tried to administer medication she went after my hand, viciously. Like she meant business and was going to bite and not let go.
When I brought her to my vet for a check-up they couldn't believe the condition she was in. They even seemed to doubt whether there was much to be done for her.
The first few days she wouldn't even sit in the same room as me. She wanted to be by herself in the other room, making her refuge in the Sausage's old bed that still smelled like him and housed remnants of his fur.
I let her be and didn't try to force contact, only at medication time.
I suppose I too was resisting her to some degree. I tried to remain stoic, unemotional, and other than my role as caregiver, somewhat detached. I didn't feel ready to fall in love with another pug again so soon.
Slowly, she began to come closer and wanted to be near me more often. She allowed me to brush her and the baths got easier as well. Before long, she wanted to sit next to me on the couch; she even went into the Sausages toy box and squeaked a toy.
I knew Plum would be a long term foster because she needed a lot of rehabilitation. This was just fine with me because it gave me something positive to focus on. A much needed project that I could throw myself into and feel good about if I was able to help her. And I was determined to do so.
A few weeks into fostering Plum I needed to have surgery to remove some micro calcification in my breast tissue that appeared on my mammogram. Of course I was terrified. It was June 25th, I remember the day because that was the same day Michael Jackson died. I remember waking up from the Propofol anesthesia they gave me and hearing from the nurses about what happened to him.
Over the next few days I remember lying on the couch at home recovering and what I remember most is how Plummy came over to my side, crawled under my arm and rested her chin on my shoulder while I was healing. She was taking very good care of me because she knew I was taking care of her. I believe she saw this as her role now. And everyday since, this is her favorite place to be, tucked into the "puggie nook" as we like to call it.
This was the first point at which I started to think it might hurt me a lot to let her go.
About a week later she developed a high fever and started defecating blood in solid and liquid form. Suddenly out of nowhere she collapsed and her body went limp. I was so afraid I would lose her. I could not lose another one so soon, especially now that I was starting to get attached.
After an emergency trip to the vet and X-rays and blood work, and slides, and injections we determined that she had an acute colitis attack. Most likely brought on from stress, shock, and changing environments combined with the raging infections she had going on in her body.
I can pinpoint this exact moment in time when I was nursing her back from this particular episode that she stopped resisting and started to become very attached to me. This is when she began to depend on me emotionally. She was now afraid to have me out of her sights. She wanted to cuddle all the time had to be on top of me on the couch for security and had to sleep in my bed.
There was really no turning back from this point on. For either of us.
The next few months were full of diet and medication trial and error. As well as behavioral modification and basic training that she clearly never had.
As time went on and she started feeling better, we posted her pictures and story on the rescue website. We started getting a lot of applications from people who wanted to adopt her. And the more that happened the sadder I became.
As a foster mom, I shouldn't have felt sad. I should have been thrilled that there were good solid loving homes who wanted to adopt a senior pug with health issues. Only I didn't.
All I kept thinking is that I would be letting her down like everyone else had in her life until that point if I sent her away, no matter how good the other home was, she believed that she was home now.
I thought about how incredibly hard it was for her to relinquish her fears and learn to trust me; a human again after other humans had dumped on her all of her life. I felt like I would be betraying that trust if I were to let anyone else adopt her. But it really wasn't up to me at that point.
I didn't even have a job or a suitable place to live and I couldn't afford to care for an ailing pug that needed special food, medication and regular vetting. I had been on several interviews but none were really panning out. Finally, it was down to the wire. They were days away from having applicants come to meet Plum and I would have to hand her over, breaking her little heart. And mine.
All along I had been telling myself that if I got a job before she was adopted by someone else then it was meant to be that I keep her.
And then I did.
But there was a part of me that still didn't feel sure. It was that part of me that didn't know if emotionally I could handle losing another one so soon. I mean Plum was we think in the neighborhood of 10 or 11 years old.
And I mulled over it and had many sleepless nights tossing and turning, wondering what was the right thing to do. And then finally I did what I always do in times of uncertainty. I prayed on it and I waited for an answer or a sign.
I am a big believer in signs, because quite frankly they always come exactly when you need them.
I was at church one night at an evening vigil. The same church where I was baptized, received my holy communion, and confirmation. The same church where I would sit Sunday mornings with my grandfather who would make funny animal shaped shadows with his praying hands cast over the morning light that shone onto the pew in front of us that only we could see. He would for example wiggle his index fingers mimicking bunny ears in an attempt to make me laugh in the middle of mass, rebelling against my grandmother who made him attend service every week. The same church where I lit candles and prayed for Sausage to meet a peaceful end with me by his side.
So on this day, I sat in the pew, kneeling down, hands clasped interlocking fingers, and I prayed in deep mediation for guidance, for an answer, for a sign.
And just then I opened my eyes and the first thing I saw was the shadow of my praying hands on the pew down in front of me.
Now this is going to sound unbelievable - but I swear the shadow cast was in the shape of a pug head. And not just any pug head... it was Plum's funny shaped head and lopsided ears. In the shadow I could even see the upright curve of the right side of her lip that she makes when she smirks and is happy about something.
And in that moment with every fiber of my being I knew it was the right thing for me to keep her. I didn't fully understand why this was the right thing for me or how I would deal with the consequences when the time came, I only knew that I trusted it. Wholeheartedly.
And I never looked back from that point forward.
In time, I came to see that it was easier for me to adopt a senior dog than to start over with a puppy again. I wasn't and am still not ready to give myself over to another puppy again just yet.
In time I understood that Plum had rescued me as much as I had rescued her. We rescued each other. She taught me that it would not kill me to open up my heart and love again. In fact it would make my life better.
While I was busy fearing that loving and caring for another pug meant I would somehow be betraying or taking me away even further from the loss of Pugsley, learning to love Plummy actually made me feel somehow closer to him again. In a way that even I can't explain.
I came to realize that the love and bond I had with Pugsley was special, once in a lifetime love that could never be touched, imitated, or matched. And it wasn't meant to be. Loving another dog wouldn't mean replacing that bond; it would mean forming another entirely different and new one.
Even though it worried me to think Plum and I might only have a year together or a few years at best, I came to understand that I was in a position to make them the best years of her life. To give her the kind of life she always deserved and probably dreamed of. It wasn't quantity of years that mattered, it was quality.
When I look back over the past year I can see only good things that have happened since Plum came into my life. At the very least she was the catalyst that led me onto some very positive paths.
If I never adopted Plum I may still be afraid to love again.
I would still be missing out on all the joy that living with a dog brings.
If I never adopted Plum I may never have gotten my job which I love.
If I never adopted Plum I would never have bought my house or secured a positive investment in my own future.
Health wise, sure we still struggle with her allergies and the occasional infection or issue that flares up. But overall she is stable and content and so much better now than she was before.
I recently had her into the vet (the same vets who never came out and said so but I could tell doubted whether she was even worth saving) told me they could not believe how good she looks and how it really is amazing what I have been able to do with her.
Most of all she is happy now and all heart...and it shows.
I wanted to write this because I know there are others out there who may still be grieving the loss of a beloved pet and may not feel ready to let another one in. I felt it was important to share that sometimes you may never feel ready and you won't know what you're missing out on unless you just dive in and take the plunge. The rewards can be great.
To anyone who looks at a rescue dog that may be in need of a lot of rehabilitation, don't let that stop you from adopting a special needs rescue. It is amazing how resilient dogs are, and also how much love alone can heal their spirit, and physical healing is not long to follow. The love and devotion they give you back, as their rescuers is indescribably strong.
Also to everyone who may be afraid to adopt a senior dog. I can personally attest to the positive merits of welcoming a senior dog into your home and why sometimes they make the best companions:
♥ Senior dogs love to sleep and cuddle the day away. They enjoy a brisk daily walk, but the best part of the day is the nap. They love for you to join them.
♥ Senior dogs have a tremendous amount of love to give. When you rescue a senior dog, you have a best friend for life.
♥ Senior dogs reward your care with an unwavering devotion. Nothing matches the love of a senior dog for his rescuer.
♥ Senior dogs have learned many of life's lessons. They know, for example, that shoes are for walking and bones are for chewing.
♥ Senior dogs know that great outdoors is for eliminating and the house is for relaxing. Your carpet will last longer with a senior dog.
♥ Senior dogs can learn new tricks and be valuable family and community members. They make excellent therapy dogs.
♥ Senior dogs often fit into your household with ease. They find the softest, warmest spot in the house and claim it for their own, but they will share with you, too.
♥ Senior dogs are often the first to be killed in area shelters. Passed over for cute and cuddly puppies, they often do not have a chance and must go to make space for more puppies.
♥ Adopting a senior dog saves a life!
I set out to write Plummy's one year update and tell the world all about how far she has come since I rescued her....but if I am being 100% honest, the real story is how far I have come as a result of her rescuing me.
For information about adopting a rescue dog, visit our adoptable dog's page to see available pugs for adoption.
You can also go here to read Plum's full story and to see more of our Amazing Rehabilitation cases.
This melts my heart.
The growing support for our pug rescue organization continues to amaze me. We have everyone from Rick Springfield, to anonymous high profile supporters, to the littlest of curly kids getting involved. And everyone pulling together for the pugs truly does make a difference.
In one of our latest fundraising campaign's for Lil' Bit, our liver shunt pug, Curly Kids Ellie and Sean helped us reach our fundraising goal by hosting a lemonade stand that raised $44!
They sent the below note in with their lemonade funds.
One of my favorite features of the new house is the standalone dog tub, making it hella easy to give pug baths. Plummy on the other hand is not too keen on it just yet :)
With summer almost upon us we ask that everyone please make sure your Pug does not become exposed to extreme temperatures for any duration of time. Due to the pug's short noses and challenged respiratory system, anything over 80 degrees can begin to add stress to a seemingly healthy Pug's sensitive breathing and can create a life-threatening situation.
You can follow these simple rules to keep your pug cool and healthy during the warmer months.
SUMMER PUG TIPS:
1. Always have cold water available for your pug.
2. If you pug overheats (even in the house if you do not have AC, you can use a cold wet/water soaked towel or blanket to drape over them and have them sit/lie down in front of a fan.
3. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER leave your pug alone in the car during warm months (not even for a 5 minute, quick run into the convenience store).
4. When walking your pug, try do so early in the a.m., OR later at night when the sun has gone down.
5. When outside, if possible try to keep your pug in the shade.
6. If at a meet up or other event and no shade is present, continually monitor your pug and make sure they take breaks from playing.
7. As cute as outfits are, dressing your pug in hot weather can contribute to them overheating.
Signs and symptoms of heat stroke:
Signs of heat exhaustion include heavy panting, hyperventilation (deep breathing), increased salivation early then dry gums as the heat prostration progresses, weakness, confusion or inattention, vomiting or diarrhea and sometimes bleeding. As the condition progresses towards heat prostration or heat stroke there may be obvious paleness or graying to the gums, shallowing of the breathing efforts and eventually slowed or absent breathing efforts, vomiting and diarrhea that may be bloody and finally seizures or coma. Temperatures above 105 degrees Fahrenheit are dangerous!!
What to do in case you suspect heat stroke:
If you dog shows signs of serious distress from the heat it is best to cool him/her immediately with cool or tepid water rather than really cold water. If ice packs are available they can be applied to areas where circulation is very good, such as the "armpits", inquinal region, or neck. Blowing air over her with a fan as you cool him/her off with water can be helpful. As soon as he/she seems to be gaining some comfort proceed to your vet's. Dogs who suffer from heat stroke can develop delayed complications that are really serious, including death, if they are not properly monitored and cared for.
Let's all have a safe healthy summer!
I've only had Plum for 11 months and in that short time she has had UTI's, colitis, uterus infection, pyometra, heart condition, bacteria infections, yeast infections, chronic ear infections, skin infections, wrinkle infections, food allergies, environmental allergies, behavioral issues, itching, biting, licking, rubbing, chewing herself raw, vomiting,... I know I'm missing several others but I've lost count.
She is back to having some kind of allergic reaction again. This time she is going at her feet and scratching her chin until it bleeds. I suspect an environmental cause as her diet hasn't changed much. I have no idea what the trigger is this time or how to stop it, it may be the spring pollen or grass, or maybe even all the dust that has been kicked up in the house from packing, moving, and cleaning. I don't know but I am just praying when we get to the new place she stablizes again.
Oh I can also add a sty to her long list of ailments. She came up with this one on her eye the other day and then scratched it until it burst.
The next day I woke up with a sty in my eye...in almost the same spot. Which is pretty weird because I haven't had one in about 10 years and I know they aren't Zoonotic. The only other explanation I can come up with is that I'm starting to assimilate pug problems, like a Borg.
God, I hope we can move soon. The stress of living in limbo is starting to take us both down.
Back in November I blogged about our puppy mill rescue Clementine and her one surviving prematurely born puppy, Flannery.
And how Drea fostered little Flannery, who needed 24hr supervision for the 1st two months of his life. Working with other volunteers they provided round the clock care with feedings, teaching him how to nurse, and socialize....ensuring Flannery was safe until he turned into a real healthy, happy, and thriving pug puppy. And that he did!
For the full back story, Click here:
Well I am very happy to report our little Flannery was adopted into his forever home!
Flannery has grown into an amazing pup who is well socialized, loves life, all puppies & people alike. He can give kisses a million licks a minute and that is his favorite thing to do.
Flannery's adoption has been in the works since November. It has been a long road but this epic puppy's story had quite an epic ending. From the pictures, you can see that Flannery (the happiest most lovable playful puppy on the planet) is now with a super silly fun loving man who had been committed to Flannery, TRULY committed to rescue & working with Curly Tail for several months.
Flannery now lives on the water in San Fransisco with his new dad & his very own private dog run! He has the best life we could have ever hoped for. This is truly a pug puppy fairytale! Yeah for Flannery! May you have a long, happy life with your new dad.
We will miss you but we know you are living the grandest life imaginable, and that every ending has an exciting new beginning!!
I knew Plummy was a faithful loyal companion but it wasn't until the other day I realized just how good of a dog she really is.
Poor Plum has been having a bad allergy flare and is so uncomfortable that she licks chews and gnaws on her feet until they bleed and she has been using her sharp claws to scratch her head so much that she has little sores near her eye that are all red and inflamed.
I feel so bad because I know she has that "crawling out of her own skin" feeling and there is not much I can do to relieve her in these times of flaring. It's a long process to change up meds and her diet to identify and remove the possible allergy triggers. And in the meantime I have to watch her dig into herself until she bleeds. It's torturous for us both.
But then something happened that really touched me. The other night she was sitting next to me on the couch really going at her paws, totally obsessed and unstoppable licking, biting, and gnawing at them.
After not being able to take it anymore I lifted up my finger and pointed it in her face, indicating a "Stop!" hand signal.. Miraculously she just stopped and then very gingerly crawled closer to me, let out a little sigh, and rested her head on my arm.
She didn't want to. I could tell how incredibly hard it was for her. But she did. In that moment I realized just what a very good girl she is.
I recognized that it must have taken all of her willpower to resist and despite the intense physical action that every part of her body from the inside / out was compelling her to take....her urge to obey me was greater.
People talk about having super-human "mind over matter" like abilities. But Plummy demonstrated heart over matter.
She didn't itch at all for the rest of the night.
Plummy seems to be enjoying it when her pain pills kick in. She is on something that I think is the human equivalent to Vicodin or Oxycontin....whatever it is she is resting comfortably and recuperating nicely after her surgery. I love the peaceful look on her face here....she looks totally stoned.
Happy Easter and Passover to all!
My Plumy came through her surgery w/ no problems at all! Phew!
I dropped her off at 8:00AM and got the call that she was awake by 10:45.
The Dr. said it was definitely pyometra. It was luckily not the big swollen infected kind because we caught it early while her cervix was still open and draining but she did have pockets of pus in the uterus and surrounding areas beginning to accumulate and would have done major damage if left untreated.
I am feeling totally confident now that we did the right thing.
She has to stay in the hospital overnight to be monitored and kept calm, but all looks well!!
Now they will have to listen to her most sad and pathetic howls while she is there, missing me. Hahahaha. She does not like to be separated from her Mama!
Ahhh......big exhale and sigh. Now we can move on to a most joyous Easter weekend.
Thanks for all the emails and prayers!
~ Doing the Happy Pug dance ~
We finally figured out what is wrong with Plum...I knew it could not have been a normal heat with all the bleeding and marking.
Plumy has been diagnosed with pyometra, an infection of the uterus and she needs to undergo an emergency spay surgery.
I am very worried about having her undergo a big surgery at her age, knowing she has a heart condition, allergies and all of her other issues.... but if she doesn't have it her uterus can rupture and she will die :(
We have no other options.
Her surgery is scheduled for Wednesday, I'll be a nervous wreck until I get the call that she came through.
Please say a little prayer for my girl!
translation = the heat won't stop
Ok not to be gross or all TMI...but exactly how long is the bleeding phase of a female dog's heat supposed to last? We are going on day 8 with no sign of it slowing down here. She bleeds more than I do for pity sake and she only weighs 17 lbs..
I'm getting tired of giving baths, washing blankets and cleaning up spots on the floor. And I have white couches!!
I attempted to hold her down with the assistance of a 200lb man trying to strap on a $12.99 per package doggy diaper and she nearly took our hands off with the all of 5 teeth she has left in her mouth..... and the friggin' thing slid right off her ass anyway..
Not to mention the doggy mood swings.
Not to mention we are both pms'ing at the same time.
I just read online that some dogs can bleed the entire 21 days of the heat cycle...I have a feeling Purdy may be one of those.
I was sick with food poisoning the other night laid out on the bathroom floor in the fetal position and instead of barking for help or something to that affect she plopped her rear end down next to my head and starting licking herself.
Someone, please tell me it will be over soon.
I started noticing little patches of dried blood on all of her blankets where she sits and sleeps the past couple days.
Then last night we were chilling on the couch like normal, she was sitting next to me and I was gently petting her back as I always do.... and all of the sudden she curled her lip into a warning snarl! It didn't make any sense....one minute she was being extra cuddly and the next minute she snapped and started growling at me for no reason at all.
That's when it hit me....Plum is in heat AND she has doggy PMS!
Wow. I have no experience with owning female pugs until now, only males.
Being that she was a rescue and I have no clue about her prior history, I wasn't sure if she had been fixed. There is no visible scar on her belly and I have always suspected she was used as a breeder, so it makes sense that they never spayed her.
I didn't think it was possible for a dog of her age but apparently it's not like humans - unspayed female dogs can get pregnant their whole lives, and that could be very dangerous, even fatal for a senior girl like my Plumy. It could be equally as dangerous to spay her at this point.
I guess I'll know for sure if any male dogs start coming around the yard to "visit" her. Then I'll have to fend them off wielding torches and sticks.
Poor Plum! Sooooo many doggy problems and now puggy pms :(
I am happy to report our first annual Pugs & Kisses fundraiser was a HUGE success! We were able to raise some much needed funds for our Stabilizing Sammie campaign!
We want to thank everyone who came out to support us with a special thanks to Curly Tail Pug "Jewel" who patiently and lovingly sat in the pug kissing booth for 4 hours dishing out kiss after kiss. She definitely worked hard for the money!!
And special thanks to guest pug of honor "Sunshine" who also stole the show and captured the hearts of every human in the store, and a few dogs, ponies, and turtles too!
Thanks to her daddy Ken and big sister Emily the Biker Pug for coming out to share the love.
It was a special day in honor of Barry, one of our own who passed unexpectedly this weekend.
Here are some of my favorite pics from the day:
Here is a slideshow of all the pics, enjoy!
One small leap for mankind and dogkind today - a pet store in Rocklin, CA. has agreed to stop selling puppies after being flooded with emails, phone calls, and protests.
The word is spreading that we will not tolerate the travesty of puppy mills any longer and retailers are listening. Together our voices are being heard - this is what education and affirmative action can do. Let's keep it up people!
ROCKLIN, CA -- Owners of a Rocklin pet store say they were flooded with e-mails and phone calls, asking them to stop selling purebred puppies. The requests started soon after a Roseville pet store which sold dogs closed last year.
"We won't be selling puppies anymore at the store, we just want to be a good member of the community and it's clear that people don't want us doing it," said Rocklin Family Pet Store owner, Dale Glazer.
Last December, Petland in Roseville closed down in the wake of a News10 investigation. The store allegedly purchased its dogs from so-called puppy mills, which are large-scale breeding operations where dogs are often treated inhumanely.
A protest was scheduled to happen outside the Rocklin Family Pet Center this weekend but has now been canceled by animals rights groups. Instead, the store will host an SPCA pet adoption event this Friday.
Other pet stores have also agreed to stop selling puppies as part of a pledge to the Humane Society of the United States:
Dear pug friends and supporters,
We have an emergency situation with our sweet Hercules and are putting out an ALL CALL rally to help him.
Hercules is our sweet older boy whose elderly owner was no longer able to care for him. Herc is blind and hard of hearing, however he is potty trained to use his training pads in the mornings and he also eliminates on his daily walks outside.
He has become very attached to his foster mom and loves the security of being near her at all times. Unfortunately her living situation has changed and she will no longer be able to keep Hercules.
Our current temporary foster homes are filled to the brim and Curly Tail fears moving Hercules into another "temporary" home will break this sweet boy's spirit.
We are putting an all call notice out to try and find Hercules a Forever Foster home to avoid having to move him again.
Because Hercules is blind and deaf it takes him a long time to acclimate to his surroundings and we do not want him to move again only to lose another home.
Can you find it in your heart to take this sweet boy in and let him live out his Golden years with the peace and love that he so deserves?
Herc would do best in a one level quiet home where his human is around often to comfort him.
Please contact Jill with inquires regarding Hercules: firstname.lastname@example.org
What a difference a little Lubbins can make.
"Lubbins" is pug language for "Lovin's", btw.
I can't believe there are people in the world who just throw their dogs away because they don't fit into their lifestyle anymore. But there are. I see it everyday.
It hurts me to know Plum was one of those dogs that somebody thought of as disposable especially after 10 years of living in the only home she ever knew with the only people she ever trusted, who one day deserted her just when she needed them most.
Sometimes she sits and stares off into space with the saddest little look on her face :( I wonder if she is thinking about them, wondering what she ever did to make them abandon her.
It makes me angry for sure. But more than anything it just makes me want to give her more Lubbins.
Probably the most rewarding gift as a dog owner who rescued versus buying from a breeder or pet store is watching the transformation that takes place.
Now granted Plum has a lot of ailments and still has a way to go with her allergies, diet and chronic ear problems but the good news is those sad looks she used to get...they happen much less frequently as time goes by.
Where her neck was once a big red bald patch of itchy sore skin, it is now a thick and full white fluffy pug mane.
When she was once locked in a cold metal cage with no interaction or warmth of any kind, she now sleeps on fluffy blankets high atop human furniture..
Most importantly she will never have to worry about anyone giving up on her again and there will always be a fresh supply of the best medicine in the world - Lubbins!
Ever have one of those days when you feel like the only living creature on the planet who truly understands you is your dog?
I'm having one of those days.
She thinks to herself as said faithful dog gently rests a comforting chin on her masters shoulder and exhales a knowing sigh at the end of a particularly brutal day.
Springfield is best known for his now classic #1 song, Jessie's Girl, his role on ABC's drama General Hospital and a twisted version of himself on the Showtime hit series Californication.
Mr. Springfield is a dog lover, supporter of rescue, and Curly Tail in particular! Please visit his website rickspringfield.com to see our web banner there, updates on his dog Gomer & new album.....Venus in Overdrive.
Now sing it all with me....You know I wish that I had Jessie's Girl!!
Plum had some heart tests because of her murmur, irregular heartbeat and she collapsed once and got disoriented another time.
They confirmed she has an enlarged heart and a stage 1 heart condition. The good news is since it's early stage we can treat her with a basic heart med and it should control the situation. The idea is to make her heart not have to work so hard to do its job (as it's doing now) so it doesn't get worn out and ultimately go into failure.
What's interesting is looking at her chest XRAY we discovered that Plumy has some hardware in her right elbow, screws and bolts!
But seriously, It means she had to suffer a fracture to her leg or elbow at some point in her past life before I rescued her. I don't even want to imagine how that could have happened :(
I always wondered why she has a little dark bald patch on her right elbow and why sometimes she whimpers when I pick her up from under the shoulders. Must be that screw was digging into her..
Now on top of all Plum's many other ailments, she is also a heart patient..... with screws.
It's very curious.
Plum had shown no interest in toys until about a month ago.
I wondered if she had maybe never been given toys in her former life and just didn't know what they were for. Or maybe she didn't feel safe and secure enough to let her guard down, kick back and enjoy some toys. Like maybe she was afraid she would get into trouble if she did.
What's kind of sad about Plum is you can tell she was a dog who was never loved enough in her past. I know this because she is never fully content or at ease unless a part of her body is touching mine. My guess is she was crated all the time and deprived of human contact.
You can imagine then how excited I was the day she finally meandered over to Pugsley's old toy box (I kept a couple of his special toys out for future fosters and rescues to play with) a couple weeks back, taking careful sniffing consideration to decide on the one she wanted and quite unexpectedly proceeded to pull out one of his ratty old bug toys with crooked antennae that still smells like the Sausage. The fur on it is matted from his years of licking and sucking obsessively on the toy. He had a bit of doggy OCD.
Now out of nowhere Plum has become obsessed with this toy. Its her favorite thing, even foregoing opportunities to sit next to me and pin me down in favor of playing independently with this toy. It was kind of a break through.
Excited at the prospect of her now taking comfort and joy in something other than me after 6 long months - I went out and got her a couple new toys for Christmas thinking she could now have some of her very own. I got her a pretty pink squeaky heart that says "Princess" and a plum colored pull toy and a purple frisbee.
The curious thing is she has zero interest in the new toys. She won't even look at them or entertain the idea of squeaking one.
She is only interested in Pugsley's ratty old toy. She sleeps with it at night and has to have it next to her during the day in her cuddle bed, when we are chill'axing on the couch, basically at all times.
Very curious indeed.
I hope everyone had a great Christmas and is getting ready for a happy new year!
By far the biggest hit this year for gifts (aside from my nephew's shiny new Hummer) was this painting I had done of my mom's beagle.
Our resident pug rescue painter, MB does incredible work and truly captures her subjects to a tee. I so wish I could paint like this...my mom just LOVED her painting and is thrilled to have this forever keepsake of her dog. If you're interested in having one too, check out MB's gallery here. And remember 100% of the painting proceeds go to pug rescue!
Sophia is awake and going home in a few hours! Updates on her healing process to come. Everyone's positive thoughts for her helped! Thank You!!!!
Poor Sophia our little Curly Tail Pug Rescue mascot is going in for surgery tomorrow....she has to have her foot amputated at the hock joint. Because of her spinal bifida condition, the risk of infection is too big a threat to her life to not have it removed :(
Please keep Sophia in your thoughts and prayers. She has been such a tough little spitfire and has been through so much already in her 1st year of life.
CLICK HERE to read the full update.
Plum and I will be thinking gentle thoughts all day tomorrow.
I ran into an old friend the other day. I hadn't seen him since Pugsley's passing when he was around to witness the heartache I endured.
Because he follows my blog, he also knew that I adopted Plum but we hadn't really discussed it.
We pulled up two bar stools and talked over a pint.
"Ok, I have to ask ....why would you put yourself right back into that same situation again so soon, why not get a puppy?
My answer was like all of my answers tend to be: honest, simple and straightforward -
"Because she needed me.... as much as I needed her."
He doesn't wonder why anymore.
Forget Black Friday battling long lines, angry store clerks and crowded shopping malls. I have the perfect holiday gift for the dog lover in your life and I guarantee you they will cherish it forever, plus you never have to leave the comfort of your own couch.
The very talented Mary Beth, one of our Curly Tail volunteers and resident painters donates her extremely creative and fantastic talent by painting custom dog portraits. MB truly has a gift for capturing the personality and unique spirit of her subjects.
Here are just a few samples of her work, the photo on the left and painting on the right:
For the low cost of $52.00 (includes shipping) any pampered pet's picture can be captured in a unique way for all to see!!!
Just email your dog photos and MB will paint a one of a kind forever keepsake. She paints all breeds and has graciously agreed to donate 100% of the proceeds to the rescue pugs!
Check out MB's phenomenal talent at the link below and order yours today!!
I will be ordering one of the Sausage for myself!
There was a time not too long ago when coming home to the vacant sound of a pugless house and the absent wag of a curly tail was enough to make me cry.
Cut to - this is how I'm greeted now when I come home :)
Sorry I am all about the before and after pug stories this week. You must deal because this much cuteness and rightness with the world simply must be shared.
You all remember Butter? Well here is the cheeky little fellow last month at our Halloween Meetup - doing his best Michael Phelps interpretation. Of course he won a prize.
I am such a sucker for a happy ending, esp one that involves an adorable pug.
It has been a difficult few weeks for our rescue organization beginning when one of our recent puppy mill rescues Clementine, unknowingly gave birth to a premature litter while in foster care, while her foster mom was at work. You can imagine her shock when she came home to a crate of squealing little pug puppies.
Clem gave birth to her litter alone, without any medical or professional support. Since then it has been a bumpy roller coaster ride to try and save as many as we we could. Unfortunately, only one pup from Clem's litter survived, little Flannery who was so tiny and underdeveloped he was unable to move around or feed on his own.
For now we are focusing on the positive, Flannery is growing stronger every day and we are all very touched and inspired by what a wonderful mama Clementine is!
Straight from the nursery - here are some new pics of mama and baby pug.
Hmmm, I wonder how Plum would feel if I came home with a little boy pug like Flannery....you know it's only a matter of time :)
To see all of the slide shows and updates from this amazing rescue story visit the Fall 2009 Mill Rescue page.
And for your viewing pleasure here is little Flannery playing with his very first toy! Can you even stand how cute he is???
I have been reading Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs & Cats and I don't exaggerate a bit when I tell you it has completely changed my life as a pet owner in understanding how domestic animals are fed; how poorly pet food is manufactured, how none of it is government regulated.
I was horrified to learn that even the best intentioned of pet owners (myself included) can unknowingly feed their dogs toxic residues of factory-farmed, antibiotic-fed, hormone-laced cows, chickens and sheep, mixed with spoiled grains and rancid oils, not to mention artificial preservatives and sweeteners they load up to sell more.
Disgusted to find out that some 100,000 pounds per day of diseased animal tissue from the slaughter houses are discarded as not fit for human consumption and what do you think happens to that rotten meat? It gets shipped out directly to the pet food manufacturers.
The USDA does not regulate the multibillion dollar industry and many veterinarians don't speak out against it because it's the executives at these pet food companies that fund their school and business grants.
As a result of the corruption and greed - what we end up putting into our beloved pet's food dishes everyday may very well include rotten flesh and diseased tissue, feathers, ashes, sawdust, toxic metals, artificial flavors, colors, and seasonings that are loaded with known carcinogens.
After reading Dr. Pitcairn's book, I don't think I will ever in good conscious be able to own another dog without cooking their food myself and knowing exactly what ingredients go into their bodies..
I realize all of this may sound a bit extremist and Antiestablishmentarianism but for me the proof is in the pudding...
Just look at the dogs in Europe and South America - they are fed a natural diet of raw meats and real whole foods and the cancer and disease rate over there is miniscule to none. It's a fact that domesticated dogs live longer lives in other countries and die of natural causes and old age.
Furthermore in the 4 short weeks I've been feeding Plum her home cooked diet (based on Dr. Pitcairn's recipe's) I have been able to wean her fully off of her: cortisone pills and shots, toxic antifungals, twice weekly skin baths and I have scaled back greatly on her anti histamine. Her itching, biting, and rubbing has already decreased by about 40% and we won't even realize the full benefit of the home cooked diet for a good 2 months.
Previously she would be scratching and biting her ears, neck and feet raw until they were bleeding with open sores that she self inflicted.
It's already clear to me that commercial pet food was making her sick. To compound her problems the medication she was receiving to relive her symptoms (not treat the root cause) were depositing even more toxins into her body, weakening her already compromised immune system further. No wonder why she couldn't get ahead of her issues.
Yes she is still battling a couple secondary infections but that is to be expected as an initial healing crisis that occurs from flushing out the toxins in her system. It may be a bit premature to say this but I believe once we clear her lingering infections this new diet is going to make all the difference for her. It's the first ray of hope I've had over the past 5 months anyway - and believe me when I say I have tried everything else and spared no expense. I am so excited that it's beginning to show!!
Dr. Pitcairn believes that dog's and cats should be fed as natural a diet as possible,
"Although we have come to accept commercial foods as being normal or natural ways to feed animals (and indeed ourselves), in fact they are not. They are simply what we've gotten used to in the last few decades. But nothing we can produce commercially ever can rival those mysteriously complex foods manufactured for eons by nature itself."
--Richard Pitcairn, DVM
All of this learning has led me to read even human ingredient labels very carefully and I have recently made the switch to a mostly organic dairy diet myself. It has already made a big difference in my hair, skin, and stomach.
I am sure there are some dog foods out there that are ok but the scary thing is there is really no way to tell which! Regardless of whether you have a dog with allergies or not, keep an open mind and pick up Dr. Pitcairn's book, whether you decide to homecook or not.....it is an enlightening read.
We're making good progress administering Plum's ear drops. I no longer have to put the drops in from behind and hold her down...I can now sit on the side or in front of her and she doesn't growl or try to attack like she used to.....in fact she yawns at me now like she is giving me the big old pug version of "Wut-ever!"
I think she finally realizes who is the alpha in our pack and that the ear medicine is a just going to be a part of her regular day. This is a good thing. Especially since the Dr. just informed me that she will need to be on the antibiotic drops for the rest of her life and in addition I have to give her daily vinegar/alchohol ear flushes to kill the yeast.
What a good girl!
If you think I'm a pug nut just look at how some of my fellow pug lovers dressed their pugs up for the 5th Annual NYC Pug Meetup Halloween Costume Contest and extravaganza in Soho..where prizes were awarded and money was raised for the Curly Tail pugs.
The event included a social meet and greet with a runway show of over 60 pugs and their pet parents. I am sure the judges had a very tough time because every costume was a winner as pugs transformed into tacos, eggs and bacon, ballerinas, roosters, bumble bees and celebrities.
Yes. In case you were wondering...there really are others out there just as crazy for these curly tailed little goblins as me.
Pug people understand the old saying, "Pugs are living proof that God has a sense of humor."
It is good to be among my kind.
The Sausage was very low maintenance...he never needed much except when he got cancer and required some surgeries. Even then he would bounce back a day or two later like it never happened.
But poor little Miss Plum has a compromised immune system. She is currently battling 3 infections: staph, pseudomonas, and upper respiratory infection. For the latter I just had to change up her antibiotics again because she wasn't responding to the others and every couple hours I have to crate her with a big basin of hot water and Vick's vapo rub under a blanket...since dogs can't blow their nose it helps loosen up the congestion.
Here she is undergoing her latest treatment...steam baths...this is one high maintenance pug!
On a happy note we received a very special Plum card in the mail today from one of the Curly Kids! Soooooo cute!
One of the things I love about working for the Curly Tail Pug Rescue organization is the sense of harmony and community that exists. There are no politics, no super egos, no judgments, no hidden agendas, we are all just a bunch of pug lovers who share one common mission - Together we REACH: Rescue, Educate, Act, Change, Hope.
We all work full time jobs. We all have our own dogs, families and obligations to tend to. But we all make time everyday to do whatever we can to make a difference in even one dog's life.
When our foster homes are at full capacity tripping over pugs in our homes and we get the call about 5 more in need, somehow we pull together and make room.
When it's pouring buckets of rain on the weekend outside in the park where there is a fundraising event, our unbelievably dedicated volunteers are there for 6 hours tirelessly working the booth to network and spread the word about our mission.
When we go home at night after working 9-10 hour days before we even sit down to eat our own dinner, we tend to our rescues and fosters; we bathe them, we feed them, administer medications, and we show them the love many have never known.
Instead of kicking back in the evening to watch our favorite television shows we get on our computers and mobile devices to coordinate our next public events, transportation runs, adoption applicant screening, website updates, etc. We have whole teams that go out to local classified ads and scour the shelters where even one pug may be in jeopardy of being placed in an inappropriate home....or worse.
The best thing about it is nobody complains. It's hard work to see the things we see, to do the things we do, and to know the things we know. It's hours of our time that we do not get paid for in monetary terms but rest assured we are all the richer in more important ways.
Being a part of it all is truly inspiring and rewarding beyond compare.
But sometimes all the hard work from the loving and committed volunteers is just not enough. Sometimes we can't bare the burden all on our own. It is only with the help, love, and compassion of other animal lovers that we are able to continue on our mission.
Right now in addition to an overwhelming number of owner surrenders (30 pugs in foster care) we also have 3 intensely difficult cases:
Nemo's Story (this one breaks my heart into more pieces than you can imagine)
We received an emergency call about a scared little male pug named Nemo. We were told Nemo had "escaped" from his home and was hit by a car. His owners couldn't find him for 24 hrs. When they finally did, he was scared and shivering under the front porch. He was not able to walk, he was whimpering in pain and his owners couldn't afford to take him to the ER so they called us.
In the middle of the night, we drove out to LI and brought whimpering little Nemo to our 24 hr vet care facility where he would be safe and Curly Tail would fund his ER medical treatment.
Initially upon intake, Nemo was whimpering in pain and had not gone to the bathroom in almost 24hrs. We weren't sure of the extent of his injuries. Nemo spent 3 days in our ER facility, he was cared for around the clock where they had him catheterized and on fluids to stabilize him. His pelvis had been shattered and broken in several places.
Our vets had suspected abuse when they examined his current injuries and a past injured eye. As you can see from the images, Nemo's eye is sunken and "pushed" in. It has already healed however, he must have suffered terribly when he 1st suffered the injury and then had to wait out the healing with medical care.
They also suspect that Nemo was kicked based on the damages to his pelvis (rather than hit by a car) b/c he does not have any injuries elsewhere on his body and b/c of the nature of his previous injuries.
Nemo is healing and even though he has been through so much & suffered tremendous pain, Nemo is one of the sweetest and gentlest pups in our care and everyone absolutely LOVES him.
Nemo's medical care is topping out near $2,000.
Fall 2009 Puppy Mill Pugs
Shortly after Nemo's intake we partnered with GMPR in an effort to rescue over 70 pugs from a puppy mill being shut down in Georgia. This horror show of a facility was being forced to surrender their dogs by the USDA. When that happens, you know the situation must be dire.
In spite of an overwhelming number of pugs already in our care, we managed to make room for 6 more of these desperately needy pugs. We were able to rescue Clementine, Kiwi, Blackberry, Honey Dew, Pear, and Apple.
These pups are safe in Curly Care and have begun treatment for their various medical needs. These little pups are the most adorable, loving, GRATEFUL little angels. They are all acclimating amazingly well in their foster homes and want nothing but to be held and given love, affection and of course the healthiest & tastiest meals possible.....of course, we oblige.
The current running total for these 6 puppies = $5,850.00
Little Yoda has been in our care since July. Yoda is a sweet 6 month old pug puppy that came into Curly Care from a local shelter about 1 month ago. Yoda had a wobbly gait and would lose his balance occasionally. We suspected neurological damage. We conducted a battery of tests and concluded that he has a liver shunt.
Because of Yoda's shunt condition, the toxins in his system and failing "internal filter" has caused both of his eyes to ulcerate. He physically cannot have a surgery once the shunt surgery is performed because his little body will not be able to withstand and process another time under anesthesia.
We postponed the shunt surgery for 5 days to monitor the progress in his eye treatment. If we need to enucleate an eye and / or do a graft, it all needs to happen during his liver shunt surgery. This means that we will need TWO specialist surgeons to work on him simultaneously. One surgeon will deal with the eye removal and/or graft while the other is performing the shunt portion.
Yoda's simultaneous surgeries will cost close to $4,000
Fellow Bloggers - You can help! Please cross post the above rescue story links and chip'ins to help us spread the word. Even the smallest donation helps a pug in need.
Thank you for helping those that can't help themselves!
If you've ever owned a dog with allergies you know how frustrating it can be to go item by item trial and error give and take away things that may be possible triggers to get to the underlying cause.
So far in the short time I've had Plum I've tried 3 different diet changes, numerous antibiotics, prednisone, vetalog cortisone shots, Atopica pills, vet prescribed IVD dog food wet and dry, Wellness brand wet and dry (which is typically great for the majority of our pugs), twice weekly medicated baths, Antihistamine every 4 hours...and despite all this, she is still not where I want her to be. She still gets pink and itchy more than she should.
At this point I have to suspect an underlying systemic yeast condition may be at play and pursue treatment by eliminating any and all sources of yeast including any form of root vegetables. Up until now everything I've fed her has had yeast based items and given that it's nearly impossible to purchase dog food without yeast - I am now just making my own dog food for her so I can control the ingredients. She is now on a strict homemade raw diet flush to purge her system from the inside out for a good month or 2 in hopes that this will do the trick and then we can transition her over to a non yeast based dog food.
It's clear by looking at Plum that in her previous life (which I know nothing about) the one thing I can tell is that her medical needs were completely neglected so there will be years of damage I need to reverse.
I've consulted with a number of other pug rescue rehabilitators who have successfully rehabbed their pink sticky yeasty pugs, as well as two of my vets: both traditional and holistic DVM'S and they all agree this is the next best move for her so I am committed.
• Boneless chicken or Turkey (brown and white, some gizzards mixed in too are good)
• Brown rice
• Frozen vegetables (NOT ROOT VEGGIES like carrot, potato) green beans, spinach
• Frozen berries - blueberries, cranberries
• Bone meal - powder (very important to have the proper calcium/phosphorus ratio).
• Yogurt Plain
I cook the rice first because it takes the longest and let it soak in water overnight to blow it up (the vet said to do this).
Next I boil the chicken, let it cool and grind it up finely in the food processor.
Grind frozen veggies in food processor.
Grind frozen berries in food processor.
Put the stopper in the sink and throw in all the ground ingredients:
I make sure the ratio is 40% meat 30% rice 30% veggies
Next I take out a bunch of zip lock freezer storage bags and spoon in enough for 2 meals per bag. I make enough for 14 bags or a 2 week supply at a time. Then just de-thaw one package per day.
With each meal I spoon out a teaspoon or two of the yogurt and add in a little banana + a few teaspoons of warm water to take out the chill. I then give her a multi-vitamin once a day to make up for the vitamins and minerals she doesn't get from processed dog food.
As well, because the new whole foods diet does not contain any oils it's essential to supplement with a good oil containing omega 3's - I use Grizzly Salmon Oil and add a few squirts to each of her meals.
It's a lot of work I won't lie... but I feel damn good doing it because I know this is the first time in Plum's little life that anyone has ever really cared enough to get to the bottom of her issues and do whatever it takes to fix her up.
Plus, if I ever decide to move to Vermont like Diane Keaton in Baby Boom, then I have already done my field work on how to make really awesome Gourmet
baby dog food. That would be cool.
*Note* I am not a veterinarian or expert please consult your veterinarian before embarking on a home cooked diet for your own dog.
For reference this diet was based on the book I highly recommend by Dr. Pitcairn - Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs and Cats.
Be sure to catch the season premier of Rescue Ink Unleashed on the National Geographic Channel, September 25th, at 10:00PM!
The Rescue Ink guys are a bunch of big muscle bound tattoo wearing dudes with huge hearts for animals. They don't take any crap from animal abusers. I love Big Ant, Eric, and G!
6:30Am standing in the shower, eyes still squinted tightly closed from the night before, half awake when you reach for the shampoo bottle and proceed to soak up a thick lather working it through from root to tip.... when suddenly it strikes you there is something vaguely familiar but askew about the smell..
That's when you open your eyes, look down at the bottle and make the connection - Malaseb medicated dog shampoo used to treat bacterial and fungal infections in dogs, cats, and horses.
It was bound to happen......Plum has more shampoo bottles in the shower than me.
I don't expect to be doing any itching or scratching on my head or contracting ringworm anytime soon.
On a side note, I don't remember my hair ever being this soft and manageable.
Nephew Joshua is officially a Curly Kid now!! He is proudly helping Auntie teach the rescues how to leash walk.
Josh is extremely gentle and patient with dogs, a total natural....and at just 19 months old, our youngest Curly Kid thus far. Be still my heart! Be still my heart!
Here are some pictures of Plum's rehabilitation from when I rescued her 3 months ago to where she is now. We've had some setbacks and will probably have more....but we are also making overall steady progress.
My end goal is to get her to the point where she is completely itch free and all the hair grows back on her feet and neck so the little old gal can enjoy her golden years without a hint of discomfort. I know it can be done, anything is possible with enough love and diligence.
We still have a long way to go but I love a challenge, and I do love me some Pum Pum.
It's funny how different love can be. The way I loved Pugsley was soooo different from how I love Plum. Pugsley was a one of a kind, so human-like, my one and only Sausage, the forever Pug of my heart.
No other will ever compare. No bond will ever be as strong and I will never love another living creature the way I loved him. It will never be the same, and that's ok. It's not meant to be is it?
I finally get it....each love you are blessed with in this life is meant to be unique and different and cherished for exactly what it is, nothing more and nothing less. They are not meant to replace the one that came before, but to leave their own special footprints on your heart.
I guess it's the same with humans. Some loves you have are more brotherly/sisterly or like a best friend and others burn with a fire in your belly that can never be distinguished.
The important thing is to keep on loving.
Plum Plum became Sugar Plum and then she became Da Pum Pum and that morphed into Purty. Cause when people make fun of her gill man feet I need to reassure her that she looks very Purty....
When I started assigning nicknames I knew it was in trouble. But she's been lobbying hard to wear me down and I'm too weak to fight.
Purty likes to cuddle on the couch and ride in the car.
Purty barks at spiders and tries to protect.
Purty growls at me when I give her a bath.
Purty attacks her bath towel and has a silly grin on the right side of her muzzle with a snaggletooth smirk.
Purty like's to play with Pugsley's froggy.
Purty sleeps with the tip of her tongue poking out and she gets my ass up out of bed in the morning with puggy whimpers that rival any alarm clock.
Purty's coat is smooth as silk.
Purty sounds like a kitten purring when she snores.
Purty wags her tail like she just can't help it.
Purty keeps surprising me with something new everyday.
Purty learned to trust again even though it was hard...
For this I don't have it in me to let her go.
We might only have 1 year together or we might have 5..
Purty is mine.
It's official.....I am a foster failure! I have adopted Plum :)
I think this picture of a fully rehabilitated Pixie says it all.
H.R. 3501, the Humanity and Pets Partnered Through the Years (HAPPY) Act.
This Act would amend the Internal Revenue Code to allow an individual to deduct up to $3,500 for "qualified pet care expenses" for a legally owned, domesticated, live animal.
As Americans trim budgets to make ends meet, innocent animals should not go without adequate care. Even a small tax deduction for responsible pet owners will go a long way to meet the needs of companion animals, ease the tax burden of those who own a pet (63 percent of all households) and may even encourage more people to provide loving homes to the countless animals that fill America's shelters.
Please take a moment to sign the petition and urge your representative to co-sponsor H.R. 3501.
Pass it along.
Here is a copy of the actual HAPPY bill:
Keep Reading » » »
HR 3501 IH
H. R. 3501
To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow a deduction for pet care expenses.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
July 31, 2009
Mr. MCCOTTER introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means
To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow a deduction for pet care expenses.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the 'Humanity and Pets Partnered Through the Years (HAPPY) Act'.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
The Congress finds the following:
(1) According to the 2007-2008 National Pet Owners Survey, 63 percent of United States households own a pet.
(2) The Human-Animal Bond has been shown to have positive effects upon people's emotional and physical well-being.
SEC. 3. DEDUCTION FOR PET CARE EXPENSES.
(a) In General- Part VII of subchapter B of chapter 1 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (relating to additional itemized deductions for individuals) is amended by redesignating section 224 as section 225 and by inserting after section 223 the following new section:
`SEC. 224. PET CARE EXPENSES.
`(a) Allowance of Deduction- In the case of an individual, there shall be allowed as a deduction for the taxable year an amount equal to the qualified pet care expenses of the taxpayer during the taxable year for any qualified pet of the taxpayer.
`(b) Maximum Deduction- The amount allowable as a deduction under subsection (a) to the taxpayer for any taxable year shall not exceed $3,500.
`(c) Qualified Pet Care Expenses- For purposes of this section, the term `qualified pet care expenses' means amounts paid in connection with providing care (including veterinary care) for a qualified pet other than any expense in connection with the acquisition of the qualified pet.
`(d) Qualified Pet- For purposes of this section-
`(1) QUALIFIED PET- The term `qualified pet' means a legally owned, domesticated, live animal.
`(2) EXCEPTIONS- Such term does not include any animal-
`(A) used for research or owned or utilized in conjunction with a trade or business, or
`(B) with respect to which the taxpayer has claimed a deduction under section 162 or 213 in any of the preceding 3 taxable years.'.
(b) Clerical Amendment- The table of sections for part VII of subchapter B of chapter 1 of such Code is amended by striking the last item and inserting the following new items:
`Sec. 224. Pet care expenses.
`Sec. 225. Cross reference.'.
(c) Effective Date- The amendments made by this section shall apply to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2009.
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We are trying to get the word out about our latest rescue pug, Bryant.
Poor Bryant was dumped in a park in NYC by his owners because they couldn't deal with his medical issues.
Bryant is covered in tumors large and small. The largest one is the size of a baseball.
It goes without saying that I have a soft spot in my heart for the mast cell pugs, as my brave little Sausage battled it for years.
I cannot even fathom how Bryant's people could abandon him at all, let alone in this condition.
Please help us spread the word about Bryant and crosspost to www.curlytailpugrescue.org
For those of you who have been following Sophia's story, you understand the important milestone she reached by turning one year old!
And as you can see from the video clip, she is feeling spunky as ever!
Happy Birthday Sophia!! The feistiest pug I know...
We need to stop the bleeding!!
Late last week Plum was really tearing into her neck to the point of blood and pus oozing from her neck folds! Could it be the heat? The humidity? Nobody knows...it's all trial and error, wait and see....I got her back from another vet trip and we have a whole new treatment plan of attack. I am now giving her weekly baths in Oxydex (Benzoyl Peroxide), feeding her a strict allergy free duck and potato diet and steroid shots to give her some relief.
I don't think she is going to be able to scratch her neck or bite her feet in this contraption.
Check Curly Tail Website for the latest Plum Medical Update!!
Plum Plum is still feeling under the weather and on top of the stomach problems her allergies have flared again.
It's back to square one with diet changes trying to figure out the triggers. I now have her on a bland white rice and banana diet until the colitis gets under control.
I know she looks pretty cushy perched on my lap with her plum colored heart blankie...but she doesn't sit still for long. The allergies make her itch herself raw until she bleeds, despite the Benadryl every 4 hours, medicated baths 2x a week, and being diligent with hypoallergenic everything that she comes in contact with in my house. I have threatened the cone if she does not stop.
We currently have her on medical hold which means she'll be with me for a while longer. Only problem is the longer she is here, the more attached we both get to one another.
I now know for certain that I will be unable to peel myself out of bed for a week when she goes.
We had to make an emergency trip to the animal ER last night....I didn't get home until 11:00.
It all started about a week ago when Bebe arrived and Plum became very jealous and aggressive towards her. It wasn't improving over time, kind of surprising considering the info Plum came with said she got along really well with other dogs. This wasn't the case when my 2nd foster arrived anyway...
All I could think is this is the only time in poor Plum's life that she has been given unconditional kindness and love - cause I have all that leftover Sausage love to lavish on the foster pugs now - maybe it was too much and she didn't want to share that with any other dog.
Long story short we had to place Bebe in a different foster home. It was really sad and I cried the whole way home after I dropped her off, so easy to get attached you don't even realize it until you have to say goodbye....but I knew it was better for Bebe because she is the complete opposite of Plum - Bebe needs to be with other pugs that will show her some doggy love. She wasn't getting it here.
A few days ago I started to notice Plum wouldn't walk up the stairs anymore, where previously she had a little routine of going up everyday. I thought maybe she was trying to block Bebe from coming up, or feared she might have Lyme's disease...she also began acting really lethargic and the day before yesterday she was vomiting in the AM.
Yesterday she wasn't improving she just lay on the couch sleeping like a lug while I worked in the office. Around 4:30 I decided to call the vet and make an appointment for her the following morning. I was sure she must have had Lyme's b/c I remembered pulling a tick off of her eyelid a few days before...and her records showed that she never had a Lyme's test or vaccine.
A couple hours later Plum began to plummet ....I noticed she started trembling all over like she was really in pain. Of course the vet office was closed by now. I live in a really rural area where the closest 24 hour animal clinic is 2 hours away...She had been laying down for hours so I decided to lift her up and bring her outside to pee..her poor body was lifeless dead weight. I set her down on the grass and she could barely walk and most horrifying of all she started pooping bloody diarrhea...even after she was done eliminating I brought her inside and set her down on a pad where she was really trembling, hot, and there was still blood dripping out of her rear end.
I quickly paged the vet and phoned the rescue experts to ask what I should do...they agreed I needed to get her into emergency care asap. It seemed like it was taking forever for the vet to call back but actually I think it was about 20 minutes. I was sure I was going to lose her. All I could think is that I can't lose another pug in this house...Not this soon. It hasn't even been a year yet. I kept thinking next time I need to foster a young healthy one...but then I remembered how much I love the seniors too, and how I seem to get more attached when they are older, sick, and needier. And after all she took such good care of me when I was recovering from my surgery.
The hardest part with a rescue dog is you don't know anything about their history in some cases. For all I knew Plum could be riddled with tumors in her belly and not know because her owners never took her to the vet.
I knew Lyme's disease couldn't make blood come out of the rectum, but I did know cancer could...it was like having the Sausage here worrying about him all over again. Patting his head when he was sick telling him it would be ok. I didn't think I was strong enough to go through all of this again but somehow I held it altogether and was....maybe because I've been through it all before. Maybe because after losing my best friend, I know that nothing can ever hurt me that badly again... and I could survive just about anything life has to throw my way..
We met the vet at her office at 9:00pm. She ran about a million tests and different exams to try to determine the problem. Of course Plum wasn't going to make it easy. I had to help hold her down when they took blood and she thrashed and tried to bite me then the needle popped out. When we laid her down on the X-ray table she screeched and howled noises like I'd never heard before and she tried to bite the Dr. and she trashed so hard her patella popped out and the Dr. had to pop it back in..
It was during the 2nd X-ray that I was introduced to the most ingenious invention I'm sure I will ever witness in my lifetime - the pug muzzle. It was this thin nylon muzzle designed just for flat nose breeds that covers their eyes and mouth so they can't see or bite and leaves an opening at the nose so they can still breathe. Completely safe and harmless but so effective.... I immediately took note of the company name on the tag so I could order one at a later date. It is obviously for short term use only but something I think every feisty pug owner should have for trimming nails, putting in ear drops, all the things pugs won't easily let you do.
After about 2 hours at the clinic Plum was stable. Her heart rate was ok, bloodwork was perfect, she was not dehydrated, she tested negative for Lyme's, not anemic, X-rays looked good no signs of obstruction and her breathing was steady.
She did have a fever and her stool sample showed an overgrowth of bacteria in the GI tract. After ruling out everything else they diagnosed her with acute canine colitis of unknown cause.
Who knew dogs could even get that? It's like doggy IBS or Chrons. Because it came on so suddenly, it was most likely triggered by something she ate (she did get into my garbage a couple weeks ago and ate some rotten food), could be her new allergy medicine which we have discontinued for a few days, and the Dr. also said it can be brought on by stress related stuff when there is a change in their everyday environment, moving or boarding. It is very possible that having Bebe coming in really upset her and pushed her over the edge.
All is well now and she is resting comfortably. Of course all of this means it will extend her stay with me as she can't be placed until she is fully rehabilitated. Now we need to still get her allergies under control, get her colitis under control, and once that is all done she still needs to be spayed.
I teased Plum this morning and told her I think she is having all these mystery ailments that take a while to fix just so that she can stay with me a while longer.....she is a crafty girl.
I took in a new foster pug this weekend, her name is Bebe. Taking care of two needy pugs is hard work, similar to how I imagine it would be chasing after toddlers all day - preparing special meals, giving them baths, administering medications, changing diapers, making sure they don't kill each other...but it's helping keep my mind occupied as I continue to anxiously wait for my biopsy results.
Poor Bebe is an owner surrender who is very sweet and very sad. Her "owners" recently put down her pug sibling who Bebe was best pals with her whole life.... because they said she was "too old". Then they decided they didn't want dogs in their lifestyle anymore so they got rid of Bebe too! Luckily we got her before they found a vet to put her down as well...Now we need to help the little old gal find a forever home. Bebe walks funny and her back legs are incredibly stiff as a result of being kept locked up in a crate for years. I've been exercising her in the yard for an hour each day to slowly start loosening them up again.
Bebe has such a beautiful sweet white face and a lovely soft fluffy coat of fur with a cute silver / black stripe running down her back.
Its a good thing I never meet up with these people in a dark alley at night.....I'd be like some crazed pug loving super hero trying to avenge all the villainous wrongs done to the pugs in this world.. I'd be like cat woman, only I'd be Pug Woman! I wonder if that means I'd have a curly tail on the back of my black leather pug suit? I should write a comic book.
So I was hoping Plum would warm right up to her because Bebe is really lonely for her companion and she keeps trying to nuzzle Plum and play. BUT as it turns out Plum Plum is very jealous and isn't having it.
Sadly she hasn't warmed to Bebe, she is just barely tolerating her and there was a food aggression incident this morning.. I guess I've gotten Plum too spoiled all by herself here the last few weeks with me and now she doesn't want to share.
My house is becoming a wayward home for senior puggies. It's just like the pug farm that I have always dreamed of in my perfect world scenario; needy pugs always coming and going, helping them in loving memory of the Sausage.... I realize I am missing a couple other things from my perfect world...but I've been busy working on those too.. Nothing comes easy.
Plum's new thing is she likes to plant herself on my lap while I'm working in the home office. Doesn't matter if I'm busy typing away, chatting on conference calls, or wiggling my legs around in the chair. She just plants herself there and hangs on for the ride.
Pardon the messy desk. It's on my list of things to do..
So I've taken to calling my foster pug "Sugar Plum" and singing her Lou Reed songs because she is cool like that..
Went to the Apollo you should have seen him go go go
They said hey Sugar, take a walk on the wild side
I said hey babe, take a walk on the wild side. All right, huh.
She loves the part where I sing:
And the colored girls go
Doo, doo doo, doo doo, doo doo doo...
She thinks I'm a little crazy but it's all part of my method training. Loosening her up to bring out some silly. The way a happy pug should be.
So far my favorite part of being a foster mom is watching the changes they go through as they learn to trust again.
The first few days Plum was here she was terrified, trembling, hiding in the corner and crates. Her tail was always down. She wouldn't let me touch any of her areas that require meds, like her poor little ears. I had to get really creative to get the medicine in. I'd have to tether her leash to my futon, put a cone around her neck, stand behind her body and slip her ears through the back of the cone so she couldn't see the medicine dropper going in.
I couldn't spray or touch her feet with itch stop or aloe vera lotion. She didn't know how to leash walk, go potty outside. She was too scared to trust me and too weak to walk up even 3 stairs. I was pretty sure she had never been given toys before because she had absolutely no interest in them and she wouldn't take any treats from me.
So I've kept her on strict outdoor bathroom rituals, 3 protein rich meals per day at the same time along with her antibiotics, antihistamines, and cortisone and I have been patient in letting her come to me when she is ready. I just go on singing my silly songs, telling her she's a good girl, and touching her everywhere in a non aggressive way so she gets used to my hands.
It's working. She lets me touch her ears without any problem and they are looking so much better already. She is learning to trust me a little more and lets me see another side of her personality. That's what I love most about this gig....she is slowly letting her guard down and each day she surprises me with something new.
She caved around day 5 when she finally trusted me enough to roll onto her back in a submissive move letting me rub her belly. Now she actually climbs on me, pins me down and DEMANDS belly rubs. I love that her little pug ways are starting to come out now that she feels a bit better.
She shocked me the other day when I was upstairs and heard her howling for me. She somehow busted through two baby gates and a big flight of stairs to see what I was doing without her. I didn't even know she could walk upstairs!
And tonight for the first time since I've had her, she actually played with a toy. She was shaking it her mouth violently growling at.
Personality and trust wise Plum is doing great. Of course we don't know the full extent of her illness yet. Only know that her surface and most immediate medical needs must be treated first. I am being pretty vigilant about that.
I just hope we can reverse the physical neglect because this little puglet has a lot of love and charm to give some lucky family.
For now I am just happy that she's getting the curl back in her tail.
Since a lot of people find my blog by way of keyword searches like "where to buy a pug" I figure I'll take the opportunity to help them understand some important health factors before taking a pug into the home.
Of course one should never "BUY" a pug from a pet store or non-reputable breeder, one should adopt from a shelter or rescue.
There are a number of things to consider when deciding on a pug for a new pet. Like for instance they can't tolerate hot weather because of their short noses and challenged respiratory systems. There are genetic issues, eye issues, mast cell tumors, knee problems (luxating patella), ear, nose and throat issues......and ALLERGIES.
The allergies can be related to food, skin, environmental, systemic, etc. Much of determining the cause of the allergy is trial and error by eliminating certain factors that may be the culprit. It takes time, patience, and more of a financial commitment for medications, vet bills, and a special diet.
Little Plum is a prime example of a pug with allergies and the damage they can cause if left untreated.
Damage to legs and paws as a result of untreated allergies. Feet are red, swollen, itchy, loss of hair, hyperpigmented brown with saliva stains from years of licking, biting and rubbing.
Ears are red, inflamed, and bleeding from untreated infection. Possible permanent damage to her hearing. She does not hear me unless I am right up in her face and even then she may just be responding to my facial animations.
Sores and inflamation on legs and bottoms of feet, make it painful to walk
Moral of the story is if you want a pug be prepared to treat allergies. Not all pugs have them, but many do.
And on a lighter note here is little Plum lounging in her favorite spot in my house, the Sausages bed.
It's her happy place. You can even see her little smile. Doesn't she look like the froggy when she smiles?
Poor Plum was seriously neglected and needs a lot of rehabilitation. It's just like an episode of Dogtown in my house.
There are medicine bottles everywhere, spray bottles, itch stop, aloe vera gel, leashes, harnesses, cones, ointments, medicated shampoos, syringes, towels, blankets, crates, play pens, you name it. There are health issues, behavioral issues, house training issues... Also she smells like a giant corn chip to the tenth power.
I am not complaining about any of it mind you. I am just so happy to have some pug company again.
Trust-wise she is starting to come around a little I think. After 4 days she finally trusted me enough to rub her belly for a little while today. The poor girl is very frightened of people's hands touching her.
What's kind of weird is that her favorite place to be is in Pugsley's bed in my bedroom. Sometimes, like now, she just hangs out in there by herself while I'm out in the living room or office working. I haven't decided yet if it's spooky or sweet.
Other times I tell her stories about the Sausage, and I think he would be proud.
I know he is looking down and is totally happy that I've gotten to the point where I'm able to open my home and my heart to other pugs in need.
We will be setting up a chip in site for Plum to help with her many issues. Stay tuned.
So I have a pug visitor that I'll be fostering for a while. Probably as long as it takes for her to be adopted.
Plum is a sweet little senior 10 y/o girl who we rescued from a kill shelter. Her owners said they were no longer able to care for her so she ended up there. Grrrrrrrr.
Plum has dermatitis on her feet and neck and has some general allergies. She is very itchy, biting and licking her feet to the point that she has lost some fur and they are red and swollen. She also has bad ear infections. She came to me with 3 meds: Prednisone, Ottomax and Clavamox. It's seems to be a case of allergies and neglect.
I've been struggling to get her ear drops in without getting bitten. The poor thing is in so much pain with her ears that she does not want me touching them or coming at them with a syringe. But I'm getting better at it. She needs the meds every 12 hours so we are getting them in one way or another.
I am giving her ½ a Benadryl every 6 hours to provide some relief from the allergies because she is just crawling out of her skin. I also have her on a protein rich diet Wellness 95% chicken and turkey mixed with Newman's Organic dry. This is what we recommend and feed all of our fosters and our own pugs as well. The new diet will take some time to benefit her system but overall should relieve many of her allergic symptoms.
Plum was a city dog so she has no idea what grass is. I put her in the backyard and she just stands there not really sure what to do. It will take some time to convert her to country living. With each walk though she goes a little further and is getting the idea that grass is a good thing..
It is super sad that such a sweetheart could end up in a kill shelter with infections, untreated allergies, and overgrown toenails. So I am now working with her on rehabilitation and establishing trust.
On a positive note Plum is a sweet petite little pug, she only weighs about 15 lbs and I can see that despite her issues her little pug spirit is still strong! She does have her peppy moments and likes to curl up behind my knees on the couch. She is also a great sleeper, I even wake up before her.... and I outsleep everyone! Mostly she just likes to hang out and chill.
Once we are able to get her skin and ear issues under control Plum will make someone a wonderful, loving and mellow pet.
Yay for Pfizer! I only wish they had developed this pill 4 years ago when the Sausage was going through his battle with mast cell. I hope it helps many others now that it is available so they don't have to endure what he did. It is a big step forward.
3 Jun 2009
By Rick Goulart
PfizerWorld Correspondent Network
Editor's Note: On June 3, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced approval of the first-ever cancer therapy for dogs in the U.S., Pfizer Animal Health's Palladia. It's an oral pill to treat recurrent canine mast cell tumors. Although the animal or canine oncology market globally is small and still undeveloped, to the families fighting cancer in a beloved dog, Palladia offers new hope for an extended quality of family life. It also establishes a new therapeutic area -- canine and feline oncology -- for Pfizer Animal Health.
Their stories vary. Yet, each has a similar message: When a beloved family pet battles terminal cancer, quality of life becomes an overriding concern.
"Brandi, our 10-year-old German shepherd diagnosed with a very aggressive cancer, taught us to really persevere through life's challenges," posted Trey McDonald at CureCanineCancer.org, a Morris Animal Foundation Web site and campaign supported by Pfizer Animal Health. "She showed her fighting spirit and that she was still full of life when the oncologist offered to try radiation and chemo to give her a few more months."
Writing in another post, Monica Kielar states, "Our family decided that we would go ahead with lymphoma treatment for our dog. All through monthly, then weekly treatment, it was such a joy to see our little Sneakers play, misbehave and act as he always had."
In some of these stories, the cancer was cured. But, more often than not, the issue that matters most and is a deciding factor in treatment is the quality of life for the dog fighting cancer.
"In human cancer treatment, there is an expectation of toxicity and side effects for a benefit of survival. Canine patients really can't understand that, and this is why quality of life is the over-riding concern for their family caregivers," said Cheryl London, D.V.M., Ph.D., a board-certified medical oncologist and associate professor at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine.
Pet Oncology: A New Pfizer Therapeutic Area
"As our Veterinary Medicine Research & Development (VMRD) colleagues began to unlock Palladia's mechanism of action and its potential therapeutic benefits, Pfizer Animal Health made a commitment to develop Palladia as the first compound of a new companion animal oncology portfolio," said Cathy Knupp, Vice President, VMRD in Pfizer Animal Health.
In addition to an active pipeline of canine and feline cancer therapies advancing within VMRD, Pfizer also began to promote external scientific investigation of companion animal oncology.
In 2007, Pfizer Animal Health donated $1.1 million to the Morris Animal Foundation to establish a national canine tumor biospecimen bank located in Bethesda, Md. This tissue bank will be accessible to veterinary and medical scientists worldwide as they research new approaches for treating cancer in dogs or humans.
The approval of Palladia by the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM), which regulates livestock and companion animal medicines in the U.S., also demonstrates the FDA's commitment to bringing novel therapeutic options to the veterinary market place.
"The CVM is actively promoting the development of treatments for uncommon conditions such as mast cell tumors," said Dawn Cleaver, Associate Director, Regulatory Affairs, Pfizer Animal Health. "Within veterinary medicine we now have our own version of the human Orphan Drug Act with the Minor Use Minor Species Act (MUMS). Pfizer was able to use incentives under MUMS to facilitate the approval of Palladia and will continue to work with the CVM to explore opportunities that facilitate the development of new oncology drugs as well as expand label indications."
In Europe, Palladia is also moving through regulatory agency approval, which is anticipated later this year. Palladia is not for use in humans and has never been tested in humans.
I apologize if this is unpleasant to hear. I'm sorry if the images are difficult to look at. I know your reaction will be to close your eyes or your browser. But we simply can't keep closing our eyes to the harsh realities of the puppy mill industry if we ever hope to affect change.
I am sorry but somebody needs to be a voice for these dogs that have none. They have none because their vocal chords have been cut out or steel rods have been rammed down their throats to silence their cries so neighbors won't hear and call animal welfare.
The fact is that it is a reality and reality bites for these dogs..
These things are tough to hear, even tougher for those of us in rescue to see, and most certainly tough for me to even write about. But they are necessary things to say and to know if we are ever to experience change in our lifetime.
I can't in good conscious as a blogger let my 100,000 page views per month go to waste without using it as a platform to help educate and get the message out. If even 2 of those viewers stumble onto this article and decide to take a stand against puppy mills and NOT purchase their next puppy from a pet store....if even 1 of you is motivated by reading this to sign a petition, push for better legislature, understand that Puppies Aren't Products, or purchase your next pet from a rescue or animal shelter then I know I have done something good. I have made a difference. And will sleep better at night.
Will you please take a minute to think the next time you walk into a pet store? Will you take a minute to think about where those cute little puppies come from?
Consider their parents and how they are treated worse than livestock; kept their entire lives in tiny wire cages given only the minimal amount of food and water with no adequate heating, cooling, ventiliation, or medical care. Think about how they are kept in squalor sleeping in their own urine and feces. Understand that the females are used to breed over and over again often still nursing one litter while being bred for the next - sick with urinary tract and bladder infections until she is no longer able to breed at all. That is when she is "disposed of" in the most cruel and callous of ways that I can't even type about here. And the most horrifying part of all of this is that it's perfectly legal.
These dogs live their lives for the sole purpose of churning out litter after litter to put money in the pockets of their very tormenters and abusers. Their lives are sacrificed to fetch the highest bidding price from retailers that sell puppies . They are deprived of all human contact and only know human hands to cause pain and harm. They live in fear, alone, trembling. Nobody hears theirs cries or whimpers. And everytime you purchase one of these puppies from a pet store, Internet store that sells puppies, or a backyard breeder, you are supporting their business and perpetuating the vicious cycle of evil.
This month we were able to save 4. But think of how many more are out there. Think of how many more suffer and will continue to suffer until we take a stand and say no more.
There are plenty of good, loving, healthy dogs in your local animal shelter or breed rescue. Please consider adopting a dog. A great place to start is Petfinder.org or if you want a specific breed perform the following Google Search:
[BREED] rescue [CITY/STATE]
Pug rescue NYC
This is just one example of our latest pug rescue effort to pull these 4 dogs from some of the worst mill conditions. We had a very difficult and lengthy process to get them out of there. These pugs were petrified of human hands but are gradually getting better over time. They were severely infested with fleas and other insects!! Their bodies are covered in cuts, open wounds and scars. Their journey towards recovery has begun with us.
You CAN make a difference in the journey of others. You can:
• Choose not to buy your next pet from a pet store or Internet site.
• Refuse to buy supplies from any pet store or Internet site that sells puppies.
Penelope, has a severe form of jaw displacement and the most extreme form of dental disease we have ever seen which includes a naturally formed drainage sight just under her chin which is the only reason this infection hasn't killed her.
Romeo has one "dead" eye from untreated infection and as a result, the eye muscles have atrophied leaving nothing to support it in the socket, giving the eye a sunken look. Romeo's other eye is also severely ulcerated.
I ask you to think about these dogs and the countless others just like them the next time you want to bring home your new pet.
For more updates on the Spring 09 Puppy Mill Pugs, to view success stories and our current list of available pugs for adoption - please visit our website www.curlytailpugrescue.org
I am psyched to now offer Flip Video Camcorders in my store!
The ultra-thin & pocket-sized Flip Video Mino camcorder has a handy USB arm that flips out and hooks up to your PC or Mac. This charges the battery, plus lets you use its built-in software to easily view, edit, and upload video and photos to favorite sharing sites.
• Records 60 minutes of VGA-quality video
• Built-in rechargeable Lithium Ion battery
In addition to the I-heart-my-pug cam you see in the left sidebar; we are also offering the following camcorder for Curly Tail:
Both designs are available in the Flip Mino (2GB) and Flip Mino HD (4GB).
From the Best Friends Animal Society:
Each year, millions of Americans buy new puppies from pet stores or on the Internet. Meanwhile, millions of dogs suffer on the "production line" in America's puppy mills - living in tiny, wire-bottomed cages, in squalid conditions with little to no human contact.
While puppy mills attempt to maximize their profits, churning out as many litters as possible, roughly 11,000 animals are euthanized in America's shelters every single day.
The Puppies Aren't Products initiative seeks to help people understand the link between puppy mills and pet stores. Our goal is to shine light on the truth behind the puppy in the pet store window, so that American consumers no longer unknowingly support puppy mills. Our goal is to see that America's dogs no longer live in these cruel conditions.
We believe that together we can change the industry. We can reduce the number of puppy mill dogs sold in the community, and increase the number of homeless animals adopted into loving homes.
Join Best Friends Animal Society in the fight against puppy mills and help create a day with No More Homeless Pets. Working together, we will see a day when all of America's dogs have what they deserve: safety, good care, happiness, and love from a family of their own.
I've been having some fun working on graphic design projects for the pug rescue. I really enjoy the creative side of marketing just as much (ok maybe more) as the analytical / technical side. I love the process of starting with a blank canvas and adding content and image elements to convey a specific message to an audience. Then pulling it all together into a design.
My latest creation is this flier that I freestyled using sort of a scrapbookish layout.
Similar to my writing style, I tend to stick to simple cleaner designs so it's still visually appealing but the message doesn't get lost. In this case it also had to show how needy pugs can be without making people flinch and turn away. Essentially it has to convey both the dark and the light sides of animal rescue. Seriously, I could do this stuff all day and never get bored.
We hope to spread the message about our new rescue organization so.... if anyone would like to post these at your local veterinarian's office, animal shelters, grocery stores, etc. Print away! Just click on the image for the 8 1/2 x 11 full scale version.
Thanks to everyone who donated to help Pixie and Sophia, two of our special needs pugs. I have some good video updates to share with you today!
You may remember Pixie the emaciated pug we learned about last month and have been working diligently to put weight on her and stabilize her condition. Thanks to the love and care of our foster mom Drea, as you can see in the video Pixie is doing quite well and is already looking so much better!
And because everyone loves a Sophia update, here she is showing off in her wheels at our March Meetup!
Thanks again for supporting CTPR we truly could not do it without the help of others!
When I had my foster pug Maxie here I called her "Little One" because she was the sweetest most petite little pug with the daintiest of pug features. A face reminiscent in its gestures and mannerisms of Pugsley, King of the Sausages. She kind of reminded me of a mini version of him (sans the sausage body) with her perfectly shaped little onion head and vintage pug nose that protrudes more prominently off the face. I prefer this type of pug nose over the rosebud kind that's been bred down to be more flattened and pushed into the folds. The protruding kind makes them look more human or something.
The week I had the little one, I took her with me to visit a friend who is battling stage 4 cancer. She was very good at making him laugh and she succeeded at putting many smiles on his face that day. She even stood on her hind legs quietly at the side of his hospital bed gently nuzzling his hand. That's the day I started to feel kind of attached to the little one.
I've been waiting patiently to see where Maxie would end up. Waiting for that "feel good" moment when you see your little foster with their adoring new family and it just makes everything so worth it and right with the world again. That's exactly how I felt when I read the update from her new family!
I am happy to report Maxie was adopted by a wonderful family in Massachusetts, a young couple who lavish her with all the love and attention she needs and deserves. The little one is getting spoiled with lots of new toys and treats including peanut butter filled Kongs (her favorite from what I hear) trips to Petsmart, enjoying long walks at Bear park, planting herself on the couch at her new Daddy's feet, snuggling in the bed and lulling her new family to sleep at night to the tune of those delicious pug snores. They even got her a little sleep shirt to wear at night when her harness comes off :) Pug pajamas, I love it!
Hearing all this how could I be anything other than tickled for the little one? Especially after seeing firsthand the home that I took her out of and now the castle where she is treated like a queen!
Here's a picture of the little one in her happy new home..
*Sigh* I had to drop off my little foster pug tonight which was not an easy task. Especially after letting her sleep in my bed, play with Pugsley's old toys and eat out of his food bowls that I had kept.
It was bittersweet having a little puglet in the house again. The snorts, the grunts, the smells, the personality and comedy that can only be found in this particular breed. How I missed it all and how I loved to be surrounded by it again. I was almost able to pet her in the dark and imagine the Sausage was still here. Then it felt wrong, so I stopped.
She was only here for 4 days so I tried to remain stoic and a little detached in my mission but I think she got kind of used to me loving on her, something I gather she hadn't really experienced until now....and that made her impossible to resist.
I mean, I am completely stoked that I was able to help her and that she will soon be going to a loving home where someone can give her everything she needs and deserves. And I definitely wouldn't let it stop me from fostering again....but OMG it was harder than I thought to say goodbye!
I was fine right up until about 10 minutes before when we were driving to the destination. It was as if she knew she was going to another place and would have to leave me. She started whimpering and pawing at my arm while I was driving.
Of course it didn't help that every song on the radio was a sad epic anthem of departure and the tears started welling. I kept changing the station but each song was worse than the one before:
Whitesnake, "Here I go again"
Simple Minds, "Don't you forget about me"
Elton John, "Your Song"
James Taylor, "You've got a friend"
Celine Dion, "My heart will go on"
The ride home was kina sad too and the house is back to being empty again.
One more day and I would have been a goner.
So I am really enjoying the short term foster bit. I get to hang out with a pug without making any big commitments or forming too much of an attachment. Because despite how much I love having pugs around, I am still not ready for one of my own again. In the meantime this is a nice foray back into pug land for me.
Maxie is a sweet little pug girl. There is something very Sausage-like about her too. They look like they could have been related. She is a very happy typical pug...
She needs a lot of attention like any pug..
Has a voracious appetite for food, toys, and treats like a pug..
Enjoys romping in the snow like a pug..
Pouts like a pug..
Whoever gets her will be very lucky!
Today a bunch of CTPR volunteers (me included) were involved in an 8 pug transportation effort to move some of our rescues from Mass to NYC. Of course it always snows during our transports, making them more dramatic.
Six of us tag teamed car to car, state to state. The terrific news is all of the pugs (except for one special needs girl) are being placed in new homes. Details to follow on the CTPR blog.
My jeep was packed full to the brim with pugs - 5 crates in all.
After that I jaunted on over to Dutchess County to pick up a surrender, a very sweet female pug. And now due to the weather I am fostering her for the next couple of nights.
My first pug in the house since the Sausage. Weird, but in a good way. Hopefully it won't be too hard to say goodbye. I'm not very good at goodbyes.
I think I'll be okay, she just needs a cool place to crash for a couple days which I am more than happy to provide.
For now I have a snoring little pug girl at my feet, 16 inches of snow on the way and a night of pug snuggling in store. Time to break out the chick flicks. I hope she likes Nights in Rodanthe.
Here is my house guest. She likes to look outside.
This is so sad. I just updated the Curly Tail blog about a new rescue and I was almost in tears as I posting this story.
Curly Tail received an urgent call for help about an emaciated pug named Pixie. Apparently her owner was very very ill and Pixie was dying along side of him. Her owner was not able to take care of himself, let alone poor little Pixie. Friends pulled Pixie from the situation and into informal foster care. Everyone meant well but were in over their heads b/c Pixie needs a tremendous amount of care. That is when CTPR received the call. Thank goodness Pixie was able to get safely into rescue and receive care within 2 hours of getting that call!
You can read the full story here:
I pray that Pixie will be okay now that she's in our care. Just look at the loving face on this sweet little girl. It tears me all up inside..
On Martin Luther King Day, President-elect Barack Obama has asked Americans to devote this day, Monday, Jan. 19, to volunteer service.
I can respect this call for service for a lot of reasons; in my own world primarily because our Pug Rescue organization is a movement built on the selfless acts of compassionate caring volunteers working together as a united team for one common cause. And we are making a difference.
In the past two weeks alone we have:
• Helped save 4 pugs from being gassed in a kill shelter down south
• Rescued 4 puppies on death's door from a backyard breeder
• Placed 4 of the 8 Puppy Mill Rescues in safe loving forever homes
And this is only the start of the new year.
I am so proud to be part of an organization that serves as a voice for animals that don't have one, a safe haven for the forgotten, terrified, and wounded, and a second chance at a new life.
How will you serve?
It may not be breed rescue that is right for you, but find something close to your heart and consider donating your time, even one hour a week, to volunteer for something you believe in. The rewards are truly life changing for all involved.
Here are a couple ideas of how you can make a difference:
Stop by your local animal shelter with old blankets and toys.
Take your kids and their friends to the local Audubon center, animal sanctuary, or nature conservancy center to educate them about animals and the natural world.
Visit the elderly in nursing homes - ask the staff which residents receive no visitors and spend a little time with them. Most nursing homes will allow dogs to visit as well. I used to bring Pugsley and the visitors loved just sitting there and petting him. The dog provides a great buffer and conversation piece as well.
Write or email state and federal legislature to lobby against animal cruelty: http://www.hsus.org/legislation_laws/action_alerts
Do something to get involved. You'll be glad you did.
Remember Sophia, the adorable little pug girl who was born with Spinal Bifida and has paralysis of her back legs? Well, I am happy to report that she got her first set of wheels!
The wheel cart is integral to Sophia's development because her little legs and back need to straighten out. This is important to prepare her for her upcoming surgery. Her surgery will close the dangerous bubble on her back.
Sophia loves her wheels and is getting really used to running and playing in the apt, hallway and indoor pug meet ups. In the next few weeks, she will venture outside!
Here is a video of Sophia in her new wheels....sorry that the video is sideways, Sophia's foster mom got so excited to see her move for the first time that she forgot how she was holding the camera!
Sophia would like to thank all of her friends and supporters from the bottom of her tiny little heart.
What a great way to start the new year!
The Puppy Mill rescue operation went down as scheduled but not without a few surprises, both good and bad.
The plan was to pick up the Puppy Mill rescues late Sunday night but unfortunately the winter storm made the transportation efforts more dramatic!
Two of our rescue pugs were pregnant & the stress of the earlier trip brought on labor. One of the pugs, Angel, gave birth during the transport. Our on call vet was able to direct one of our transporters via cell phone on what to do. About 4 hours later - another puppy was born. Unfortunately, even after lots of loving from her mommy, and our amazing transport driver Kristi administering "mouth-to-mouth" on her, she did not survive. One puppy remained, Little Liam.
All of the pugs were safely transported to NYC where they were immediately taken to our vet at 12:30AM to get Angel, the pregnant momma into emergency care and get fluids & milk into premature Little Liam. Gidget, who was also pregnant, came in as well. Both pugs and puppy stayed at the vet for a couple of days and the other pugs went out to their foster homes.
Angel and Liam were not well enough to make the trip up to their MA foster home so they stayed behind in NYC with Drea who brought Liam and Angel home. Angel didn't really know how to be a mom so Drea gave Liam IV fluids and bottle fed him Angel's milk. Sadly, after lots of ups and downs, we lost Little Liam in the middle of the night.
On a brigther note -- no sooner did Christmas day arrive and Gidget, the other pregnant female went into labor! After several hours, she safely delivered her litter of jet black Christmas puppies!
Another Christmas Miracle!
They are healthy and doing well so far with 24 hr medical supervision.
Three little Christmas Pugs....
I can only say it is a good thing I am not fostering these little black puglets or there is noway I would be able to part with them right now! Be still my heart..
It has been an amazing experience all around. Some wonderfully happy moments and some terribly sad moments. But overall we are doing well and all of the pugs are out of danger and safely in our foster care. They are very sweet and well behaved.
The Puppy Mill rescue has cost us $6,800 so far, which adoption fees alone won't cover. I have added a Chip in link to my sidebar to track our donation progress. You can also check out the Curly Tail Website and the Curly Tail Blog for updates.
This was Little Liam who tried so hard but left us too soon. He was only 3 days old. This rescue effort is in memory of him.
As some of you may know, I have been involved with rescuing pugs and volunteering for the last 7 years.
It is because of my sweet Sausage that I have fallen in love with the pug dog breed and become so committed to helping them. I have come to understand that it is through my rescue work that his legacy will live on.
With that said, I am pleased to announce that I have recently joined a new Pug Rescue organization: Curly Tail Pug Rescue!
Curly Tail's Mission is to rescue healthy, abused, abandoned, homeless, unwanted, sick or injured Pugs. We rehabilitate them and place them into loving, permanent adoptive homes from NYC to Massachusetts, parts of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Rhode Island.
Stop by to visit us online, take a look around, view some slideshows of the curly tail pugs!
I have to say I am totally psyched to be a part of this dynamic, committed, enthusiastic, dedicated team of pug lovers. It is obviously a cause very close to my heart.
In addition to being able to help pugs in need, I have been able to utilize my online marketing and design skills to help build our web presence. A very rewarding experience for me!!
As part of our PR push, I have created a brand new Curly Tail Blog and will be a regular writer / contributor. Here we will keep the public informed about our organization's efforts and undertakings. Please bookmark us and check back often for updates!
We are just getting started and trying to get the word out. So -- if any of you website owners, pug bloggers, or sponsors out there would like to be added to our Curly friends section, please let me know. We only ask that you add a link back to our site in exchange.
Last but not least - as you know we are currently living in very difficult and trying economic times. These challenges are impacting virtually every industry, dog breeders included.
One breeder is closing up shop and needing multiple pug rescues to help and take in 53+ pugs in the next week! We are currently in the midst of this full blown rescue operation transporting, fostering, and vetting a number of pugs. The pugs that we are taking are a mix of 3 males & 5 females whose ages range from 2-7 years old. Please check back for updated pictures and bios of all rescued pugs around the holidays.
Curly Tail is incorporated and in the process of obtaining 501(c)3 status
Please consider making a donation to support these efforts and help save the life of a pug.
Thank you and Happy Holidays,
This is Sophia. She is an adorable apricot fawn little pug puppy who recently came into our Pug Rescue. She is only 8 weeks old and was diagnosed with Spinal Bifida which means her back legs don't work.
Two vets suggested putting her down!! Her new vet says she is 75% perfect pug puppy but is suffering from paralysis in her hind legs. Otherwise she is a feisty, happy, little puppy who needs a forever home.
Sophia will need surgery in a few weeks. She will also need a cart in about 8 months to help her walk. If you are interested in adoption or would like to contribute to Sophia's medical treatment and her upcoming set of wheels, please email: email@example.com.
We are trying desperately to raise some funds for her care. It would be greatly appreciated if all of the pug bloggers out there would cross post this message on your blogs and forums to help spread the word..
Many thanks in advance!
Stop by and visit Sophia's Blog for updates: http://pugrescuenyc.blogspot.com/
And here is a video clip of Sophia in action:
This animal rescue site is able to provide food and care to rescue pets by using proceeds from their pay per click banner. http://www.theanimalrescuesite.com/
Please visit the site and click on the purple banner that says "Click here to Give". Your click will be help feed homeless animals.
Please take a minute to click, tell a friend, and cross post on blogs, forums, and message boards.
I've made no bones about how I feel when new parents give up their dogs because they fear how the children and dogs might react to one another. I've explained how frustrating it is for me to see this happen over and over and over with the pugs I help rescue. So, so many of them are surrendered for this reason alone. Perfect little loving pugs who want nothing more than to be a member of the family. To love and be loved, especially by a child. But it happens because parents don't want to take the time and energy to have to train both. Whatever, I understand people have to do what they think is best for their family and I would definately feel different if it was a Rotty or a Pitbull near a baby. But when it comes to pugs, or any docile breed, think about what they can be missing out on...Samantha forwarded me the link to this home movie of one family who proves that a child and animal can live together naturally, in harmony and both of their lives can be all the better for it.
Introducing Abigail and Rosco:
The maker of this video writes:
"My hope is that another dog will not be given away because a human baby has come into their lives. I'd like to share this video, to show the bond that our daughter and our pug have. Our daughter will be 2 on March 4th and this video is a montage from the beginning of her life. She knows nothing other than Rosco being a part of our family and a friend for life!"
This one is going around the Pug rescue community, a wonderful tribute to seniors from LAPR.org in California. I must warn you to have the tissues handy.
Little Chucky was surrendered to our pug rescue in May 2006. He had not been seen by a vet since 2000. He came to PPRA with kennel cough and severe yeast infections in both ears. His kennel cough turned into pneumonia. Simultaneously, his foster mom started to notice he was having seizures.
The vets could not figure out what was wrong with Little Chucky. He was having seizures and always laying his head down on his left ear. The vets thought it could be a serious ear infection behind the ear canal or a tumor. Chucky was placed on medication to clear up the ear infections, but he still continued to have seizures. The options at this point in time were to sedate him in order to look behind the ear canal into the inner ear OR to have an MRI. The seizures increased in length and intensity. He would sleep until he was woken up. He lost his balance and would fall. His little body would go into a rigid ball and he would howl in pain. All the time, he would run back and forth frantically, rubbing his head onto the floor.
The vet referred Little Chucky to Essex County Emergency Hospital for monitoring of seizures. He had a severe seizure with vomiting. He was immediately hooked up to a Valium IV. He had x-rays, ear cultures, complete blood work and started on Phenobarbital.
Essex County Emergency Hospital referred Little Chucky to Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital for an MRI. After his MRI, he was referred to Animal Neurological Clinic to have a shunt operation because he was diagnosed with Hydrocephaly. He had a CT scan, x-rays and shunt surgery on June 29, 2006. The surgeon found that he had a huge cyst in his brain which was a blowout from the fluid buildup. Little Chucky was only the second case he had seen like this. Due to this blowout section, the shunt was placed at the bottom of the cyst, rather than the usual placement.
Little Chucky is slowly recovering from his surgery. He is getting stronger every day. His medical care to date is over $6400. We have started Fund Raising to help pay for Little Chucky's medical care. To date, we have raised over $700. If you would like to donate to Little Chucky's Medical Fund, you can send a donation via Paypal or check .
Please consider helping Chucky with even a small donation. Be sure to check our website for updates on Little Chucky and all the pugs we have helped. Thank you in advance for helping this special little pug.
What a weekend! There was a flooded basement to contend with from all the rain here in the Northeast, a houseful of dogs, 2 CURS (Canine Underground Railroad runs) --- and I whipped up a rather tasty roast beef dinner on Sunday for the entire family…the secret is to add garlic cloves and some port wine to the roasting pan, makes a really nice gravy.
We had some 4 legged guests this weekend. Two displaced pugs from NJ whose owner recently passed away. Very sad. I served as a temporary foster home until Sunday morning when I drove them out to meet another volunteer (thanks Sam!) who helped transport them to their new foster mom to keep until they are adopted. Talk about exhausting, taking care of 3 pugs at once. Three times to go out, three times to feed, three times the attention..
Pugsley was very disgruntled at the prospect of sharing me with 2 other pugs on Mothers Day weekend. Note the forelorned desperado expression on his face as he lay chin resting in disgust at the weekend happenings.
I had to sit Pugsley down and have a "talk" with him -- to explain that not all pugs have it as good as he does and that we have to help the less fortunate pugs of the world, whenever we can. He seemed to understand. The raw carrots and Scooby snacks I kept slipping him on the side probably didn't hurt.
The first thing I had to do was to destench the pair. Based on their foul smell and the filthy water in the tub, I'm guessing these pugs hadn't been bathed in a really long time. No matter. I gave them the royal spa treatment. Warm tub with Pugsley's oatmeal shampoo. Towel drying and wrinkle Q-tiping followed by a blow dry..Both pugs loved their baths! The water and oatmeal must have felt good and soothing on their itchy grimey little bodies..
Petey, the big black boy who I've been calling the Big Mac-Daddy Pug was quite the character. He must weigh close to 50 lbs, looking like he could be part pot-bellied pig, part pug. Petey was very insistant on belly rubs, he kept pushing my baby gates down with his burly body and demanding the BR's. His favorite thing to do here was stare at himself in the mirror... I think his previous house must have had mirrors -- either that or he felt he was just so handsome that he couldn't help himself!
Once cleaned and tucked into the playpen that I use for pug company, the two were all shined up and sleepy. They must have had a rough day, riding car to car, place to place, into and out of the caring hands of our volunteer pug lovers. I'm sure it was very confusing for them and I had to do some reassuring when a couple little sad whimpers escaped into the night. For the most part though, they were very quiet and well behaved. Just content to be in a safe warn place cuddled up next to each other..
When they finally crashed, the pugs were snoring away curled up in little balls -- or in Petey's case, curled up in a big ball. What a portly fellow! Pugsley was not sad to say goodbye to them this morning, but I was :(
You always feel like you wish you could do more.
Happy Mothers Day to all the human and pet moms!
This weekend I rescued an 11 year old Pug with SARDS. His name is also Pugsley. What I think is so beautiful and amazing about him is that embedded deep in his forehead wrinkles is the perfect shape of an eagle. Can you see it?
I find it so ironic because eagles are known for their keen vision and this baby is totally blind. Native Americans see Eagle as a connection to the Great Spirit. Eagle teaches us that we have the ability to soar to great heights if only we will find the courage to do so.
If I had an Indian name – I think it would be Dances with Pugs. I can’t get enough of these little creatures. It all started for me 11 years ago when Pugsley alone had bewitched me, wrapping me around his curly little tail from our first encounter. I’ve only gotten wrapped around it tighter over the years. I’ve always had a huge heart for all animals, but it beats stronger and faster for pugs, I don’t know why.
I don’t understand humans as well as I understand dogs. Working in rescue serves as a constant reminder that there are other kinds of people in the world, people who can own a dog for 11 years and then give them up because they no longer fit into their lifestyle. I don’t get that. In my world, the lifestyle doesn’t change unless it can accommodate the Pug. Over the past 10 years of my life, I have refused job offers, relocations, and suitors because I felt that they weren't in the best interest of my dog. And I have not lived to regret one minute of it.
Despite being totally blind, this guy is a happy, healthy, beautiful pug. He is sweet and content just to be around other dogs and people. His owner contacted me about a month ago asking if we could “dog sit” for her on the weekends while she goes to her boyfriends house because she didn’t want to have to “put him down”. I explained that our rescue organization isn’t a dog sitting service but I pleaded with her to not put him down, that we could find him a great home. I didn’t hear from the woman for a month and I was sure that he was going to become another casualty of the “my pug is old and not as cute or convenient as he used to be, so I want to throw him away” syndrome that sadly exists too much in our world.
Thankfully, she kept my number and contacted me after deciding to surrender him to our rescue instead of euthanize. It seems she is moving down south with her new boyfriend and younger healthier 5 year old pug and didn’t feel that Pugsley would be up to it. I digress.
When I met at the house Saturday morning to pick him up, it was a sad, sad scene. No matter what kind of dog owners people are, there is always some kind of attachment that forms, especially after 11 years. The goodbyes are the hardest part for me to witness. He started whining and singing and howling these painful yodeling cries. It was like he knew he was being sent away but didn't know what he had done wrong. She started crying and I started crying. I wasn’t crying for her, I was crying for him. How sad it is to me that no matter how shitty someone can treat a dog, they are still so loyal that they would lick the hand that strikes them. That’s what really tears me up inside.
He is in a good place now and I’m sure it won’t be long before this Pugsley wraps some new unsuspecting soul around his curly tail the same way my Pugsley did me.
As for me, I always look to the lessons that my life encounters teach and I believe things happen for reasons and different souls are put into different lives to teach the lessons that we need to learn or be reminded of at precisely that moment in time.
Whenever the lesson involves an animal, I refer back to my Native American teachings to help interpret the meaning. I pulled out my animal medicine books and here is what it said:
If Eagle has majestically soared into your life, you are being put on notice to reconnect with the element of Air. Air is of the mental plane, and in this instance, it is of the higher mind. Wisdom comes in many strange and curious forms and is always related to the creative force of the Great Spirit.
Eagle is reminding you to take heart and gather your courage, for the universe is presenting you with an opportunity to soar above the mundane levels of your life. The power of recognizing this opportunity may come in the form of a spiritual test. In being astute, you may recognize the places within your soul, personality, emotions, or psyche that need bolstering or refinement. By looking at the overall tapestry, Eagle teaches you to broaden your sense of self beyond the horizon of what is presently visible.
Getting back to what's really important to me - helping Pugs. Today, I took part in one of my rescue groups CUR's (Canine Underground Railroad). In other words, we transport needy pugs from their old "undesirable" homes, to new homes. Today we got the pugs from Manhattan up to the Mass/Vermont area.
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I had the pleasure of helping "Puccini", whose owner has kept him OUTSIDE for the last 8 years. Pug ARE NOT outdoor dogs. Then the CRETAN made us BUY the dog from him instead of just surrendering so we can find him a better home. When we picked him up today, he did not come with any toys, no vet records, and the A-HOLE even had the nerve to ask if he could keep Puccini's harness and leash, the only two things that actually belonged to him in this world. I stopped along I-84 to let him go to the bathroom and I noticed there was blood in the snow, poor Puccini has some sort of infection on top of it all :( He has also never been neutered and had a bad smelly infection in his wrinkles. He'll need a lot of vet work that we'll have to pay for. Despite all of this, Puccini seems like a very happy, affectionate, inquisitive, and high energy boy.
Here is Puccini pug:
Toby is the other pug who needed helping. He was surrendered to us because his owner has Alzheimers and can no longer care for him. I felt so badly for Toby because he seemed very timid and sad :( He also had an infection in his wrinkles, was very skinny under all his wrinkles, and had some way overgrown claws which made him walk funny. Here is Toby pug:
My Leg of the CUR went smoothly, other than some humping and terrible pug-gas :) The good news is, today was the first day in the rest of these pugs lives where I know our rescue will find them safe, loving, forever-homes. It feels good to know I had a hand in that.
Toby and Puccini together
Thanks to everyone who helped! I'm so lucky to be part of this group deidcated to helping Pugs. If ANYONE wants to make a donatation to help a Precious Pug, Please go here: DONATE TO HELP PUGS
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