Yet ANOTHER good dog’s life put to risk…

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I sat browsing my facebook page, Joe’s legacy tonight and my heart stopped. Just over a year since our beautiful Border Collie died and I was faced with a spine chilling picture like this……………….

Right there on the page originally set up as tribute to Joe. There right in front of me on the screen was a beautiful Border Collie, not unlike my Joe in looks, sat on a vet table with a HUGE stick piercing right through his chest.

“OH MY GOODNESS, when will this stop?” I gasped.

The link is below.  Please – if you love dogs, even if you don’t own one, STOP using sticks as toys.  I have begged, posted, written all about it, there are facebook pages and websites, vets comments, newspaper articles, yet still people throw a stick, a harmless doggy game.  It’s NOT harmless.

I don’t know statistics but I’m sure they’re out there somewhere. The thing is, whether 1 in a hundred injuries from sticks or 1 in a million – ONE IS TOO MANY when it’s preventable by not doing it. Dog’s die – they break bones, they get ran over, they choke… there are things we cannot protect them from, but we can stop using sticks because we’re lazy, or thoughtless, or naive… there’s no hardship to take a ball, or a favourite toy and throw it.

I’ve said it before and I’ll repeat it “If you know a toy will harm a child you prevent the child from having it.  Why then do we ignore this common sense when it comes to our dogs?”

Please, look at the links – and at the very least think twice… and share if you care.

https://www.facebook.com/tierrettung.straubing.de/photos/pcb.1580550875512624/1580550652179313/?type=1&theater

Don’t let another good dog die needlessly.

People, will you help me make 2015 a successful “adopt a dog” year – starting with Barclay?

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Can £1/$1/€1 get you anything worthwhile today – YES it can.

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Dear Readers – an appeal to all of you who love dogs and have a spare note or coin in your bank account.

I don’t usually do money appeals, not via this media anyway, but this is a very special case.  This is because HUMANS have ruined the life of a dog.  I hear you think it.. “Oh no not again, someone touting for cash!” Well, I’m not ashamed to say – on this occasion yes I am.

Here’s the story of Amil, Continue reading

It’ll never happen to me……..Ooops, it just did

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Once again I’m sort of a bearer of sad news… not the worst, but sad.  A friend shared a post on Joe’s Facebook page .. STICK INJURY . The guy’s story follows at the end of this.  I will not add to it other than say that PEOPLE WITH DOGS, NEAR DOGS, LOOKING AFTER A FRIENDS’ DOG, please do not use a piece of tree in any form as a toy for a dog. Throw a frisby, and old tied and knotted rope, a large-ish ball, a dog toy …ANYTHING but sticks and wood.

After over 140000 views on Joe’s story, https://mrsskeats.wordpress.com/2013/12/28/dont-let-another-good-dog-die-needlessly/, numerous views on his facebook page, views tweets and retweets on twitter and word of mouth via other circles I believed naively that people were getting the message.  To read those words ‘it’ll never happen to me’. made me shiver.

Martyn and Jet’s story

Like most dog owners, I’ve been warned countless times that sticks and dogs are a bad combination and thought ‘it’ll never happen to me’. Well last night it did.

Jet brought a stick back and her mouth was covered in blood. I wiped it away and it came back instantly. Managed to prise her mouth open and blood poured out and onto the grass, and I do mean poured. I ran her to a water bucket nearby and washed some of it away but more and more kept coming – easily a pint in the space of a minute. Finally it slowed and stopped and I got her inside for a look. I couldn’t see much but all that blood had come from somewhere and I’ve never seen an animal look so wretched and in pain in all my life, so to the vet it was.

The vet couldn’t see exactly what she had done, but knew it was bad so took her straight in for a look. One operation later and it turns out that the stick had tore through her tonsil and soft palate, nicking an artery on the way and ploughed over an inch into the soft tissue above her palate. I was told in no uncertain terms that it was a miracle she didn’t bleed out in the field there and then, and had the stick went in even a millimetre to the side she would have been dead, no question.

Once I had her home i went and found where it happened and got a few pictures. Hopefully they will make you all think twice before throwing a stick. I’ve definitely learned the hard way.

***Update 25/09/2014***

Jet has been for her 3-day check-up at the vet and it all seems to be healing okay, but she still has a hole in her palate and is still on plenty of painkillers and antibiotics. Back on Monday for a check-up again but we seem to have got off lucky, although the hole might not heal properly and it will take her a few weeks to fully replace all the blood she lost. Glad my girl is tough as old boots!

jet stick 1 jet stick 2 jet stick 3 jet stick 4

 

 

 

 

Why pick a Romanian Rescue? – It was the “song” that played on the heartstrings.

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I came across this wall poster on yet another Rescue site on Facebook yesterday and there’s a lot of truth in it. Since looking for another dog to go with Annie (a Romanian Rescue) after Joe’s death I have spent weeks spiraling around a head-spinning array of sites for fosters required, adoption required, rescue this, rescue that… It’s mind-blowing to say the least.

Now, I had to make a decision.  As someone said recently “Taking in one dog won’t change the world, but it will change THE DOG’S world”.  So, I couldn’t go about trying to change the world per se, but I most definitely could change the world for one dog. I trawled quite a few sites, both UK and abroad – Spain, Cyprus, Romania, Spain again, Romania, UK, Romania…. One site stuck out – for me.  A lady who was a teacher by day and a carer for over 100 dogs by night/spare time had her story. It was no worse than some others I’d read, but when I read that she’d just taken in 18 pups barely 8 weeks old, that would have been put to sleep, I felt the tug.

We all get it at some point in life.  Not always about animals. Sometimes it’s children or elderly or disable people, or gardens, or buildings, or old cars … something somewhere hits a note in the heart that sings just slightly louder than the melee of other notes and there’s the tug. Some call it passion, some a calling, but whatever name you choose it’s that defining moment that leads you in a different direction from the one you intended. That’s also the point we can choose to ignore what we know and carry on our merry way, a pang of guilt or doubt or a 2nd thought soon wiped away by life itself and it’s forever busy goings on.

Sometimes we don’t ignore it, we’re tugged closer, pulled into the outstretched arms of the melody that begins to rise from that one different note.  We look, we search, we ask, we read – each time knowing that the more we know the more we’ll be dragged deeper into the song.

When I saw the pups, barely old enough to be away from their mum, I wanted to help.  After all, what animal/dog lover can turn their head from a babe in need, especially those of one of the species of animal that truly does just bond with man on a whole different level? Practically,  I couldn’t do a huge amount, I couldn’t house them all, pay a fortune for care or drive over and rescue the lot, but tiny stones dropped in a pond make a foundation on which someone can stand one day. I sponsored and offered to foster one (Maiya) , and said I’d adopt another (Tess) to have as a playmate for my Annie as was the original reason I was looking.

Maiya enjoys a chew

Maiya from a public shelter was to be put to sleep if nowhere could be found for her and 17 other pups

tess 8 wks

Tess when she was first rescued from a Gypsy cellar with her siblings who were all kept in the damp and the dark.

It didn’t seem much but the money I paid for both to be transported to the UK, plus the sponsorship money, paid for food for them and a lot more besides.  All of the medical costs for vaccines etc was included in the adoption pack for Tess and I could have avoided costs for Maiya (fosterers don’t pay these the charity does) but that note in my heart twanged regularly and I didn’t mind paying a bit extra.

All but 2 of those pups are now in safe, happy homes across Europe as fostered or adoptee pets. The success of this drive is testament not only to those who’s heart played a specific note that they could not ignore but also to the woman who took them in, loved them and made them ready to leave, whilst still caring for another 100+ dogs, working as a teacher in a school and being a wife and a human being to boot.

Why didn’t I ignore it all when there are thousands of dogs in UK rescues?  Simple answer is: – the UK rescue centers have many volunteers not just 3, they have a lot of ‘press’ and reasonable funding, some even from the government, and the dogs here are safe already.  Many people adopting a pet will go to RSPCA or the like, or even a local place: that’s the first place they’ll look. We did the same with Joe and Annie. The issue with Romania is longstanding and is now becoming known but has been overlooked to the point of utter meltdown for dogs.  The UK is well known as a country of dog lovers, there’s plenty of love to go around.

In Romania dog lovers are rarer as most people see these animals as vermin and starve them, hurt them beyond what we could imagine and then leave them to die. At the very least the country is so over-run the population is exploding ridiculously. A massive neuter drive is also happening but it can’t keep up.  Years ago dogs were loved in the country but social and economical happenings changed people’s lives and attitudes and dogs went feral.

I can’t save them all but so far I’ve saved 3…and that is reason enough for me.

My story is for the one that struck that note then struck the chord, the chord became a song I could not ignore – I still sponsor with the few pounds spare and Barclay and Sophie are among the many that need to be taken out of that dog hating trap called Romania – but for the animal lovers of this world that’s a whole other story.

If you as a reader have an interest (and if you don’t you won’t have got this far) then take a look at the links for Barclay and Sophie and go from there – Maybe your song will begin too.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.677382875677732.1073742294.580398328709521&type=1&l=ca936e704c

Joe’s story…………….

https://mrsskeats.wordpress.com/2013/12/28/dont-let-another-good-dog-die-needlessly/

Joe died but his death is still carrying a message

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It’s 19th June 2014. Joe died 6 months ago on 23rd December 2013.

Joe was a 6 year old beautiful boy taken from us after only 10 months by a cruel twist .. an accident .. lack of information .. so I started a mini campaign.  And I’ve just read about another poor soul, a friend of a friend, having to wait to see if his dog will survive a stick injury.  Heartbreaking.

Ok so writing about it channelled my grief but the whole thing goes beyond that.

What was to be thought a rare freaky accident turned out to be all too familiar to vets and families worldwide.  What was thought to be a personal kick in the nuts turns out to be a case of ignorance is most definitely not bliss.

I received hundreds of comments on my first post after Joe died. I received hundreds of facebook and twitter comments too.  The current WP views are at over 139000 which is great, and yet not enough.  Dogs are still being treated for nasty stick injuries, vets see a few each month.  I can’t preach and stay stop it, but I can let anyone and everyone who cares know what a potential danger stick throwing is: better than being totally ingnorate of the risks.

What happened to Joe, and happens to dogs all over the world at a frighteningly all to often occasion was borne of ignorance, stupidity, even years of  “that’s what we do with dogs”.  We simply never thought about the consequences it could bring.

Historically, when man decided to have dogs as pets and not merely working companions (not all that long ago in the UK) chasing a stick was a favourite game.  We’ve all seen the old adverts in faded yellows and reds with a boy, stick in hand and his faithful dog pantng happily as he waits for the ‘toy’ to be thrown.  Why should we think it’s dangerous? We see things like celebs on the One Show with their dog, happily throwing it a stick, or in videos…. Dogs and stick throwing seems synonimous

These are but a few stories of reasons why we should try and change this……………..

https://mrsskeats.wordpress.com/2013/12/28/dont-let-another-good-dog-die-needlessly/

http://www.getwestlondon.co.uk/news/local-news/dog-saved-stick-throat-scare-6645241

http://www.croftreferrals.co.uk/news  read Flick’s story

The list goes on.

Please think twice before you throw a stick for your dog to chase.

In memory of a beautiful dog, whose life will not ever have been in vain, but will mean so much more if we save others from pain.

In memory of a beautiful dog, whose life will not ever have been in vain, but will mean so much more if we save others from pain.