Archive for the ‘Community Help’ Category

Therapy dog: basset hound helps cancer patients in Appleton, Wisconsin

Fitzgeral William, AKA Fitz, is a 4-year-old basset hound. He is a therapy dog who, once a week visits the ThedaCare Regional Cancer Center in Appleton, Wisconsin. His volunteer ours are 1 to 2 hours.

It’s been shown that interacting with a pet releases the chemical oxytocin, a beneficial hormone also known as the “feel-good hormone.” An infusion nurse at the center claims that the chemical helps decrease the patient’s heart rate, helps lower anxiety, and helps reduce feelings of depression. The nurse also claims that “When Fitz comes, it completely brightens the day of our patients and us as staff as well. It’s fantastic for everybody. People don’t want to be here. They don’t want to have cancer, they don’t want to be getting chemotherapy, we have the daunting task of giving people medication that makes them feel very sick and Fitz comes and makes them feel better.”

Way to go, Fitz. I bet you enjoy the petting as much as the patients are enjoying giving it to you.

Fitz and his slave, Molly Johnson, have been volunteering since November of 2016.

Living with Dogs with Cancer

I currently live with two basset hounds. Living with Bassets hound is nothing new for me. I have been sharing my home with the breed for over 30 years. In the past 30 years, I’ve lived with about 8 bassets (and many other mixed breeds, as well). I’ve had single, as well as packs of dogs. So, I encountered all sorts of health problems. This time, I have something new to conquer. I now have two bassets suffering with cancer. I did have two dogs that were euthanized because they were suffering with the final and debilitating stages of cancer. But their cancer was discovered late and there was no longer time for life. This time, my dogs are terminal, but still having time to live out a little bit longer with their disease. I will try to describe our journey together.

Dudley—Spleen and Lymphoma

Meet Dudley. He’s soon 12 years old. He’s his adopted. We have an open-adoption arrangement with his former family. It’s a win–win arrangement. Dudley and his family get to see his each other fairly often. We get so see his puppy pictures and get to know his temperament. And, to boot, a great friendship developed among the humans.

In June 2015, Dudley was diagnosed with lymphoma. His illness started with various blood tests demonstrating anemia and an enlarged spleen. When his spleen was removed, it was a bloody mess and weighed 4 pounds. The lab work came back positive for cancer. Dudley was extremely sick after his surgery. It took him 2 weeks to recover. He had no interest in food, water, and life. Lucky for all of us, on the day we were going to have him euthanized, he perked up. In fact, he was wheeled into the ER hospital for euthanasia, and on the way to the building from the car, his sweet face perked up. He was not ready to go to the Bridge. He received care in the hospital, and 24 hours later he came home to slowly recover.

We chose not to administer chemotherapy. He was so sick just with the surgery. We didn’t want to add more to his misery. We currently give him prednisone for comfort and some homeopathy medicine. We figured that at this stage of his life, it can’t do him much harm. In October, we were told, he didn’t have much longer to go. It would be a matter of a few weeks. Today it’s December 14. He’s still here. We are blessed.


Carrie—Mast Cell Tumor

Meet Carrie. Carrie came to live with us when she was 9 weeks old. Her father was of champion lines. Carrie was going to be trained to be a therapy dog. Life intervened, and she remained a pet. One day, in October 2015, my daughter noticed a hard growth on Carrie’s genitalia. As Carrie loves to sleep outside near the bushes where we had a nest for wasps, we thought that she may have been stung by them and was having an allergic reaction. Unfortunately, once she was checked out by the veterinarian, she was diagnosed with mastocytoma (mast cell tumor). According to PetMD

Mast cells are cells that reside in the connective tissues, especially those vessels and nerves that are closest to the external surfaces (e.g., skin, lungs, nose, mouth). Their primary functions include defense against parasitic infestations, tissue repair, and the formation of new blood vessels (angiogenesis). They are also associated with allergic reactions, since they contain several types of dark granules made up of various chemicals, including histamine and heparin, serving biologically to modify immune reactions and inflammation. Mast cells are derived from the bone marrow, and can be found in various tissues throughout the body.

We chose not to do any surgery on Carrie because the procedure would be from her vaginal area to her thigh, across her belly button, down back to her vagina. The recuperation period was 2 weeks. (Horrors of what Dudley went through crossed our mind). She was given 6 months to live without any intervention, 10 months with surgery only, 14–18 months with surgery and chemotherapy. She was not going to be comfortable during the process. I’m not even discussing the cost ($10,000), which we were willing to meet had she been promised a better outcome and better conditions.

Currently, Carrie is on prednisone. We take each day one at time.

Next entry will be how dogs on steroids behave.

Basset Hound: LOST (Possibly Stolen) in Miami, FL Area

HAVE YOU SEEN ME?

MY NAME IS CHICO.

IF YOU SAW ME, PLEASE SEND EMAIL BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK ASAP.

Pit-Bull Advocate, Pet Blogger, and Dog Lover Needs Our Help

Although this blog was created originally for basset-related posts, I have deviated many times from posting just about bassets. I’ve posted about cruelty to animals, sweet cat stories, the plight of wild animals, and sweet penguins. Today, I’m deviating even further. I want to ask that my readers would open up their hearts to the plight of a human being.

CeliaSue and Cici

Background

Pet blogger and professional writer CeliaSue and her dog Cici, have written about dogs, pet travel and pit bulls for more than seven years now. CeliaSue put herself through college and worked hard all of her life starting at age 13 when she was the neighborhood babysitter. She grew up middle class and over the years, supported herself with several jobs and projects simultaneously. She achieved her dream of becoming a newspaper reporter and editor and even traveled around the world and interviewed celebrities and best-selling authors. Her life was beyond her expectations until her 50’s when she became very ill with fibromyalgia. And still with the help of a good friend, she relieved most of her painful symptoms (98% over a few years).

CeliaSue’s Accomplishments

She has written numerous times about the former Michael Vick dogs, Patrick (the starved pit-bull dog), Susie (the pit-bull mix that was beaten and set on fire) and many others. She has contributed much and spent many hours doing this labor of love (her blog) for the pit bull and dog loving community with little pay. She has given free publicity to many who have received tangible rewards (sales and media coverage).

The Landlord

Now, she and her dog Cici really need a helping paw UP. They’ve been living in a terrible situation with a hoarder landlord for the past four years. He routinely threatens, harasses, calls her names and lies.  He torments CeliaSue by telling her the dog is hurt or run over. She has had to call the police on him several times. And she has had lawyers write letters asking him to cease and desist from his lewd and bullying behaviors.

He has now retaliated upon CeliaSue for the last police phone call by sending her a 30-day notice (even though by law, she deserves a 60 day notice and it is also illegal for him to retaliate. She was sticking up for her rights). He has even declared that he cannot wait for her to be without her dog and to be sleeping on the street. He laughs and laughs at her plight.

No one deserves to be living under these stressful conditions but she is without a car and living on Social Security retirement and food stamps now. She planned to work into her 70’s and 80s like her parents. It took her two years of being hungry ALL the time to finally apply for food stamps. (She never ever thought she would have to depend upon the government for anything). Now, she lives below the poverty line. She cannot afford to pay $650 a month or more for rent plus utilities and come up with first, last and deposit. Her family has gone to the Great Beyond.

Landlord Woes

Celia is worried about her health and her dog’s well being. She is approaching 65 years old and has osteoarthritis. One night, she was coughing and could not breathe and the landlord would not even extend the courtesy of giving her some water. He called her names and told her that he wanted her to die.

Why is this man so cruel? He drinks. He is dr jekyll and mr hyde and you never know which one is going to surface.  And he thought that by having her as a roommate, he’d get a roommate with benefits. CeliaSue established from the beginning that benefits would not be part of the deal. He has become more and more abusive over time.

Hope

CeliaSue’s dog is in danger as well. This creep has opened the gate and left the dog to roam the streets. How can one live under such intolerable conditions? Well when you go from making $35,000+ a year to less than $7,000, I guess you endure a lot. But there’s hope for CeliaSue. She still dreams of helping other women her age (and women over 50 years old who are homeless). She has found out that some cities have created tiny house villages for people to live in. However, these homes cost between $7,000 and $13,000 (with wheels). There’s another less expensive choice for now: A used RV. It only costs $1,500.00. There is a place she could park it (off ground). She and her dog would be safe.

The RV

Cici

Have I mentioned that Cici is a pit-bull mix? If CeliaSue ends up in the streets, Cici would be facing going to a shelter, and we all know what happens to pit bulls in shelters—they are the first one killed. Despite the fact that Cici  is a very affectionate dog, she more than likely would not survive, not an 8-year-old pit-bull mix.

How to Help

So, can you look into your heart and help a fellow human being and prevent a dog from going into a shelter. A small donation, any amount will help a destitute woman, soon to be 65 years old, with health issues (osteoarthritis) and suffering with chronic pain. Let us make her golden years without stress. Please click here and help out.

Cici Thanks You

A Great Video about Basset Hounds

So you decided to get a basset hound? Great! First, however, make sure that you get your puppy from a reputable breeder. A reputable breeder will make you sign a contract that will bind you to spay/neuter your dog and will also inform you that your basset can always be returned to the breeder. A backyard breeder will not adhere to these two rules. A backyard breeder has no interest in the dogs, the betterment of the breed, or you. They are only interested in the profit. A better choice, however, is to get a dog from your area rescue organization. Sometimes, rescues have puppies. But most of the time, they have many great dogs in need of a good home. Think about adopting from your local rescue. In the meantime, enjoy this video:

19 Bassets from California to NY: It Took a Village

Dawn Smith: The hounds were in the air 4 hours and I think 35 minutes. Compartment is pressurized. Our protocol for flying hounds is: Feed with gas-X & Pepcid 5 hours pre flight. 2 Hours preflight we give another gas x and pepcid, along with carbo veg. As they are put into crates we use lavender oil essence topically. All Daphneyland hounds have been trained for calming with the song “When you wish upon a star” simply singing this song to them assures them it’s bedtime, and they lay down for sleep. All hounds slept through loading.

What do you do when you run a rescue organization, you are bursting at the seams, the holidays are soon approaching, which means more animals will be coming up in need of good homes, and you have no room for the new dogs to go to? That was exactly the dilemma that Dawn Smith of Basset Hound Rescue Network of Daphneyland, in Acton, CA, was facing. Luckily, the basset hound rescue community is a tightly woven community and for Dawn Smith, there was a solution. ABC Basset Hound Rescue of New York was experiencing a shortage of bassets and an abundance of homes wanting to adopt. So, the solution was a no brainer: Bassets were going to be flown from California to NYC and then placed onto vans to go to their new homes in upstate NY.

The whole process was not an easy one. There were vet checks, blood checks, health certificates to get, paperwork to fill, airplane arrangements to make, etc. It took months of planning. The weekend before the actual flight that was to take place on Monday, December 2, 2012, the hounds needed to be bathed, their crate labeled and assembled. Volunteers were called, who answered in kind.

The hounds were off on Monday. Twenty were originally scheduled to go, but one stayed back home due to illness. Nineteen took off for the 4.5 hour flight. What is the secret of sending 19 hounds on a cargo plane flight without a hitch, without a potty accident (well, one dog had an accident)? In Dawn’s words, “Each crate had a label with the hounds name, vet records showing health cert, HW testing, rabies, vacs., etc., taped on top in waterproof baggies, all hounds wore collars with names on the ABC numbered metal ID tag, as well as the back of the collar. We were taking no chances of identity theft. We worked for the last 2+ months on setting this u … we sent a “pack” of well socialized, rehabilitated hounds to ABC for placement in their homes, [thus] freeing up 20 spaces for hounds that will be facing euthanasia in the month of December. Flying hounds meant only stress for 4.5 hours vs the stress of a 7–10 day ground transport in winter.” And, there was another trick up her sleeve, “Over the many years, we have developed a protocol that has kept our babies calm during flight—or as calm as can be expected. Five hours before preflight, they are fed and given gas-x pepcid and carbo veg. About 1 hour before crating, they get a cookie with another gas x and carbo veg. We let them run and play for 2 hours before crating so they are well exercised, then we dose them with 7–8 drops of pure lavender oil essence. All hounds are ingrained with the bedtime song of When you wish upon a star, and throughout the loading process, volunteers are walking and singing to them to reassure them. They did great. All 19. All hounds slept through loading.”

Daphneyland and ABC Rescue proved that it takes a village to make miracles happen. Today, Saturday, December 07, 2013, 10 of the 18 adoptable hounds (one went home to his/her furever home upon landing in NYC) found their furever homes.

The basset community kept an eye on the FB sites and joyful tears were shed for these lucky hounds. Yes, no-kill solution is viable, it just takes people who can think outside the box.

esbaker's CA2NY album on Photobucket

Bubbles: Update

Bubbles’ surgery was a big success. The tumor that was removed weighed 8.81 lbs. It must have been a great relief for her once that heavy load was removed from her face. She no longer tilts her head to the left and she is able to use regular sized bowls that’s fit for a dog her size for both eating and drinking. Gone are the large tubs she had to use before. Bubbles is now able to eat more and is gaining weight. Despite the fact that she weighs 88lbs, that’s way to thin for a dog of her size.

For the next two weeks, Bubbles will be going in and out of the hospital, and in two weeks, she will begin chemotherapy. Her chemo will be based on the pathology report that will be back in 10 days. Her team of oncologists will determine the best course of action based on the report and the type of cancer she has.

Bubbles eye will remain sewn shut for two weeks. It is not a normal eye right now and needs to be protected from drying out. At the end of two weeks, a specialist will remove the stitches and determine how viable the eye is. At that time, it will be decided whether to keep the eye open or to have it removed.

According to Noah’s Ark, the rescue taking care of her, Bubbles is one of the happiest dogs you will ever meet. She will sit outside and look around with the most peaceful expression. She is finally free to be a DOG and is loving every minute of it. Should you wish to donate to her cause, please follow this link.

How to keep your pets safe during the Fourth of July Holidays

Fourth of July is a big event in the United States. We celebrate our nation’s birthday, and we celebrate it with a bang, lots of bangs, actually. Unfortunately, many pets are afraid of the loud noises associated with fireworks. Here are some tips in helping your pets cope with the holiday:

  • Leave your pets at home.
    Many pets are not used to large crowds and a lot of noise. The noise and commotion can be extremely frightening
  • Have quiet place to keep pets if you are hosting a party.
    Fireworks make pets very uncomfortable and agitated, and can hurt their very sensitive hearing. Have a place for them where they will not become frightened and hurt themselves.
  • Oddly enough, don’t comfort them when they are scared of loud noises.
    Comforting a pet when they are scared of loud noises tells them that they have reason to be frightened. Turn up the radio to help drown out the noise and put lots of lights on so that the flashes are less noticeable. Act normally, keeping your voice light and unconcerned.
  • Don’t tie your dog outside during fireworks.
    This will increase their anxiety.
  • Don’t leave your outdoor pets unattended, even in a fenced yard.
    The chaos may cause them to panic and hurt themselves trying to escape. A scared animal is not careful, and many are hit by cars when running wildly away from something they think is dangerous.

    A Worthwhile Petition

    Patrick was once a starved and abused pit bull. When his weakened and starved body gave out, he was put in a garbage bag and thrown down 19 flights to the garbage dump. Lucky for Patrick, the building maintenance person who found him perceived a slight movement inside the garbage bag. He went to investigate and was horrified to see a starved dog that seemed to be lifeless, but for his eyes. It was in this moribund dog’s eyes that the maintenance person saw that there was a bit of life pleading for mercy. So, he called the proper authorities to save him. Patrick was sent to Garden State Veterinary Services (GSVS), a 24-hour veterinary hospital and teaching school equipped in providing the proper care needed to bring this beautiful young pit bull puppy to back to a healthy life. Throughout his hospital stay, Patrick’s expressive eyes captivated the world. The world fell in love with him, and everybody wanted to adopt him.

    Under GSVS’s care, Patrick flourished and fell in love. He fell in love with his caretakers and they fell in love with him. The public witnessed the love blossoming. There was no doubt that Patrick and Dr. and Mrs. Scavelli (the owners of GSVS) had found each other. When Patrick was ready to be discharged from the hospital, he went to live with the Scavellis. With the Scavellis, besides gaining his proper weight, Patrick learned to love and trust, not only human beings but another canine companion. At this point, to take Patrick away from the loving home he found is to once again abuse him. It would be abusing his heart, his trust, and his well-being. So, I ask my readers or anyone stumbling at this blog to please sign the petition to let Patrick stay at the home he is loved. Just click on the widget to your right, and you will be directed there.

    Patrick and his many fans thank you.

    Raven Needs Help

    It’s sad to see a life slip by, especially when that life is young and vibrant. Raven is just one-year old. She is full of life. Tomorrow, because no one saw into their hearts to possibility of helping her, she will not understand why she is so tired, and we will have to mourn her short life, because she will never wake up.

    Raven lost the capability of using her hind legs. She could have been a good candidate for a K-9 cart. But for that she needs a good home that will deal with her handicap. On top of that, she is losing feelings of one of her front legs. That makes her ability to use a cart a bit more difficult. She needs more therapy (which is costly) and she needs a tender loving home. So this blog is now requesting for the final time for someone who could provide a loving home for as long as she needs to be rehabilitated and to have a life. Are you that person? If yes, please contact Dawn Joslin at 609-277-4684.

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