Monday, August 19, 2013

A TRIBUTE TO AGGIE, A VOLUNTEER
 AND TWO SURVIVORS

Animal Rescue can consume a lot of the lives of volunteers, but that doesn't mean the rest of our lives go smoothly. Rescue volunteers have children, partners, spouses, jobs, aging parents, and yes, sometimes the volunteers themselves become ill. Sometimes that illness is cancer. Such was the fate of our wonderful volunteer Patsy Hinson. Patsy keeps a blog about her battle and defeat of cancer. With her permission, I am very happy to post portions of her entry entitled, ""3 Women, a Man, a Dog and a Miracle"
I met Ruth several years ago at our cancer support group. Ruth was the kind of person that was always looking for ways to help others. She never saw this as a chore, but, rather, as a Blessing. When she learned that I was active in finding Boston Terriers adoptive homes, she was immediately interested and eager to know more. I was excited to find someone who was willing to help foster the dogs that were surrendered to the rescue. Fostering dogs is not something that people usually do without thinking about it for a while. Not Ruth. She was ready to do her part to help these precious pups. Her only request was to talk to her best friend, Nicky, since she shared a home with her. So, Ruth did this and Nicky was fine with being a foster parent. At this point, I am thinking, “Are these angels for real??” Soon after this, one of our local animal shelters contacted the rescue about a dog desperately needing help. They did not think she’d live through the night unless we found a home for her because she needed very intense care. Since this was Ruth and Nicky’s first foster, we were planning to place a dog in their home that had minimal problems. However, things often don’t work as planned in the Rescue World and so off she went to Ruth and Nicky’s (“The Palace”). Likewise, things don’t often work as planned in the Cancer World. Ruth was again in treatment fighting the beast. To make a long story short, we decided to foster little Aggie together, since we were both in treatment and I had just placed my foster dog. So, we called it our “Timeshare Foster” and worked together caring for Aggie. Fortunately, Aggie recovered from her serious condition, but, unfortunately, we learned she had a long list of medical conditions, including COPD, hernias, and urinary problems. She was in diapers all the time and pranced around in suspenders attached to them. Her prognosis was dim but as we got to know Aggie we realized she was a senior dog with what a vet described as an unbelievable will to live. Ruth and I had an ongoing joke that she’d outlive us both . One of many things I have learned in rescue work is there are certain dogs that “find” you and when they do, they claim you. This happened to Aggie. Aggie didn’t like men much and we have 2 in our household. Aggie takes steroids everyday, so likes to eat (actually, all Bostons are little piggys) and Nicky is a gourmet cook, so she loved to spend time in the kitchen there. So, she tolerated us until she could return to The Palace. Until one day. She decided she wanted to stay at The Palace and she started working to make that happen. When she was at my house she barked incessantly. Our vet with 30 plus years of experience at first thought it was a sign of senility and then anxiety and added prozac to her regiment. Nothing helped. Sadly, Ruth’s cancer progressed and she was in bed more. Aggie chose a place at her side and only left Ruth for a diaper change or short trip outside. Aggie’s heart broke, as did so many others, when Ruth passed. Nicky once told me that she thought she was caring for Aggie, when, in fact, Aggie was caring for her. We all continue to grieve the lost of our dear Ruth, but especially, Nicky and Aggie. I know Ruth is very happy that, as of this month, Nicky has officially made Aggie the official Queen of The Palace by adopting her and making her a true member of the family forever. Sometimes, miracles do happen in the Cancer World…

We are so sorry for the loss of Ruth and at the same time happy to be able to say that Patsy is a survivor with no active disease and happy that Aggie found all 3 of them, knew where she was supposed to be and made sure the humans figured it out. Thanks for sharing your story Patsy.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

OUR PROMISE TO OUR RESCUES

While we always hope and expect that our dogs who are placed with forever families will stay there forever, sadly this cannot always be the case. 

When we make the committment to brinig a dog into the BTRNC family, it is for their lifetime.  Regardless of how long a time or how short or the reason for the return to rescue, we lovingly bring the angel back into our fold.  We include the agreement that a BTRNC dog will not be rehomed for any reason but will be returned to the rescue in the paperwork our adoptive families sign.

We recently had the privilege of honoring this committment with sweet Luna, who was adopted over 5 years ago and recently returned to rescue.  Unfortunately, she became 5 years older so she is now classified as a senior.  We all know that seniors can be difficult to place and often remain in our foster care for the duration of their lives.

Not so with Miss Luna.  She stole the heart of a special Mom in Virginia and hitched a ride across NC and VA to her new forever home!!!   Yippee Miss Luna.  You must be a very special girl who deserved to be selected not once but twice.  All reports are that Luna and her new Mom are very happy together!



You go girl!!! 

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Independence Day 2013

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY EVERYONE

We hope that everyone is enjoying the holiday with their 4 and 2 legged family members.  This cannot be said in enough place or often enough...

More pets go missing on the 4th of July than any other day of the year.  Indoor pets bolt out doors in fear and panic from the noise.  Pets that are outside, even with their families jump over fences in a desperate attempt to escape the impending doom from the night sky.

Please keep your pets indoors away from the commotion and take dogs outside on a leash to answer nature's call.  If you are going out for the festivities, leave a loud radio or television on as background noise and secure pets in a safe area in case they become destructive in panic.

Dogs do not like fireworks, at best they ignore them and those are the lucky ones!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

FRESH AS A DAISY

FRESH AS A DAISY


I am not entirely sure if the name for this precious flower will remain Daisy but it was the name given to me by her wonderful rescuer in a Home Depot parking lot so for now, we will go with Daisy.

A volunteer for pug rescue pulled 3 pugs from a backyard breeder who was tired of the business.  The dogs were living in cages with no exposure to grass, houses or people.  They were, as most breeder dogs were removed from their cage only long enough to perform the necessary duties to have puppies.  They are a means to an income, not seen as anything else.  While she was there, she came upon a boston terrier and knew she could not leave her there so she took her too!  BTRNC thanks you Casey and will stand by to return the favor if you ever need anything.

Casey took Daisy home and then to the vet as she had explosive diarhea.  In addition, she was so terrified the first time she ever entered a home, she fell over and shook.  The vet could not even get a good stool sample because she was so infested with worms.  Casey took her home with medicine and nursed her for 5 days until we could arrange transport for this angel into foster care.  I was the lucky volunteer who got to transport her.

Flash forward to the Home Depot parking lot on a bright Saturday morning.  I turned the corner over where the mulch is stacked and saw first the most adorable tiny little package of boston trotting along next to the human who I of course noticed second.  I was smitten before I ever parked the car.  Good thing I was traveling the following week or she may not have made it past my home town. 

Along with Daisy came a leash, harness, a basket full of toys and 2 blankets from Casey.  She rode fine with me on top of her favorite fuzzy blanket.  She settled right down after she attacked the monster in the shape of a plastic water bottle in my console for me. I delivered the precious bundle to her foster Mom who also happens to be our President.  Lucky Daisy! 

Betsy updates that she gets along well with other dogs, is very active and energetic.  The vets seem to think she is between 2 and 3.  She was to be spayed last Friday, her worms are gone and her stool is solid.  She will soon be ready for a very lucky forever home.  This baby is a doll, complete with haggerty spot (dot on her forehead)  She is also currently posted on facebook with additional pictures. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

SPRINGING INTO SOME HAPPY ENDINGS

How about a few happy endings for this Spring season? 

First up, we love repeat adopters and we double love those that like to adopt in doubles.  Maggie and Candy went to their new home all the way in Pennsylvania to the same family that adopted another bonded pair, Luci and Desi from us several years ago.  Thank you so much for taking on double trouble and we hope double the fun!


This little bundle of cuteness is Ruby. 

 She made her way across a few states on a transport, gained a warm blanket along the way and arrived at her Foster Mom's house whereupon it was love at first sight and it became permanent.  From this picture, I can see why - who would not want to protect and keep this gem. 

 And to acknowledge her rescue and adoption, she then had to sport the cone of shame.  This is what happens when you are so happy, you play too hard with your new brother and get your eye scratched!



And then there is Miss Izzy, 11 months of pure puppy energy and cuteness.  She did not stay with us for long as the youngsters are always the first to go.  She is a very happy girl living the dream, in VA now.



And in closing, BTRNC joins with everyone in prayers and thoughts for the families in Moore, Oklahoma who have lost so much.  We are in awe of their great plan and execution to reunite families with each other, their treasured material possessions and their pets.  Everyone, please continue to share and repost information on missing pets if you have any social media friends near that area.  Readers of this blog will no doubt understand the emotion when a pet goes missing and the overwhelming joy when they are found.  We pray for many many happy endings as the clean up continues.



Tuesday, April 23, 2013

AND WHILE WE ARE ON THE SUBJECT OF ROCKS...

Our last post was about Rocky who overcame heart worms.  This post is about another Rocky, also with heart worms but thankfully not with the same issues during treatment.

Meet Rocky 2, a 10 year old big boy who was lucky and found his forever family.

 Rocky was a little on the hefty side, about 41 pounds hefty to be exactly.  Excess weight in dogs is very hard on their heart, lungs, joints, etc.  A dog's life expectancy is reduced by up to a year for every extra pound.  Try to remember that the next time they give you those soulful eyes that are so hard to refuse.  They say that everything in life is a trade off and for Rocky the trade was, giving up some high calorie foods in exchange for a loving family complete with a boston sister.   We think that a family plus the health benefit of shedding a few pounds is a pretty good trade.  Dining on green beans and grain free food, Rocky is now down to 36 pounds and counting.  That is a big deal for a dog.  Heck, that is a big deal for most humans as well.

Rocky and her 12 year old sister, Lola are not exactly best pals but they do tolerate each other.  They also stand side by side at the screen door if there is the possibility of a lamp chop on the grill.



Rocky is also now enjoying walks as a part of his exercise routine.  Probably due to his super size, passers by often want to know if Rocky is a pit bull.  When Rocky's people asked the vet if she thought Rocky was mixed with anything other than boston, she replied "yes, a Holstein cow"".

We are so thrilled that Rocky is living the good life with a wonderful family.  We know we will see Rocky's slim physique on an add for the grain and bean diet one day.



Monday, April 08, 2013

ROCKY ROAD TO RECOVERY

Meet Rocky, our amazing little guy who was lucky twice.

 Once to find his forever home and again when his new family responded to a medical crisis just a few short days later.  Here in Rocky's Dad's words is his story:

Rocky came to his forever home in early January, just one month after finishing treatment for heartworm disease, and the start with his new family was “rocky”, to say the least. As a rescue dog, no one was sure how long he had lived with this easily preventable disease or how much this disease would impact his life. However, one that was sure: Rocky had a long road ahead of him, if he ever wanted to be a real dog again.


Within hours of arriving at his new home Rocky’s new family fell in love with him, including his cranky older Chihuahua sister (though at thirteen, she’s a little justified in being crotchety).

Rocky’s new family knew that he needed to be kept calm after his treatment while his body worked on clearing out the heartworms that had recently been killed. In fact he was living the life. He was getting carried everywhere and he didn’t have to go outside for more than a minute or two at a time (Rocky much prefers the dry and clean indoor environment).

However, just three short days later Rocky’s breathing began to change. His concerned family took him to his veterinarian, who after taking a quick look at him, referred him to NCSU College of Veterinary Medicine Emergency Service. It appeared that Rocky had dislodged a large chunk of worms from his heart and they had plugged the vessels that allowed blood to flow from his heart to his lungs, preventing his body from receiving the oxygen is needed to survive. Rocky spent nearly a week in ICU and was completely dependent on oxygen for most of that time. The first couple of days were the worst. He wasn’t even able to be removed from oxygen for a physical exam or to do his business. His new family came to check on his multiple times a day, hoping each time to hear that he was doing better. It was tough knowing that this poor dog had just stumbled into a wonderful opportunity, only to have it jeopardized. It didn’t help that Rocky fell in love with his new family so quickly, that just the sight of them would send his heart racing. Of course this wasn’t good for his recovery, and so his new parents were only allowed to watch him from across the room.

The doctors remained hopeful throughout his treatment, though no one knew for sure if he would overcome this hurdle. Then one day Rocky was able to stand outside of his oxygen cage for a physical exam. The next day he was able to do his business outside – without supplemental oxygen. It was a day to remember. Then, six days after he was admitted, Rocky finally got to come home. This was not without a large bag of medication though. Rocky had seven medications to take when he got home. These included two different antibiotics, blood thinners, sedatives, and a medication to keep the blood pressure down as it flowed from his heart to his lungs. Of course these medications had to be given at all different times throughout the day and night. His parents even set up an air mattress in their living room to be close to his kennel, not only to give him his medications in the middle of the night, but to keep an eye on his breathing.

Slowly Rocky was weaned off his medications one at a time. And it was after taking him off one medication a week after bringing him home that his breathing seemed abnormal. So off he went to the emergency room, and it was determined that this medication would be restarted for another two months. His parents were given strict instructions to keep him quiet for those two months before slowly restarting his exercise over an eight week period. So it was looking like it would be mid-March before Rocky would be off all his medications. He hit that milestone and so far hasn’t looked back. He’s still waiting for mid-April to come, when—fingers crossed—he should be able to fully exercise: going for long walks and maybe even going to a dog park or two.

In the meantime, Rocky continues to show his family a new quirk every day. He has recently earned the nickname “Veggie Monster” for his love of all things vegetables. His favorites seem to be broccoli and cauliflower, but there are plenty more he has yet to try. He also loves wearing bowties that make him look oh-so-handsome, though usually he manages to flip the bow to the top of his neck so he looks like a little girl. His family just laughs and gives him a kiss anyway.

A note from Rocky’s family: We cannot thank BTRNC enough for giving us the opportunity to welcome Rocky into our lives. Even through all his troubles he has made our lives more complete. Thanks for giving all these great little dogs the opportunity to find the forever home they deserve.


A note back from BTRNC:  We cannot thank you enough for adopting Rocky and seeing him as a member of your family so quickly.  Your dedication to his treatment and recovery is a wonderful tribute to the compassion that rescue too rarely sees and what keeps us going time and time again.  Please let us know when Rocky passes his mid April milestone!

And one more:  Heart worms can be so easily prevented by a monthly treatment.  Now there are even some that can be administered every 3 or 6 months.  Please, if you have a dog, don't play the odds on this disease, keep their treatment current.  Even if the treatment goes better than it did for Rocky, it is costly and very hard on the dog as they must be kept still during the kill process.  The coughing that they do while the heart worms are dying is something you don't want to hear.  We thank you!