This Page is for some very special girls whom without them, this site & would not have been created.
Their personal stories have been shared to give somebody reading an insight and of course with the aim of preventing another puppy farm sale.
The photograph above was taken shortly after Zoe had been rescued from a puppy farm.
Where it started:
I've decided to put here the start of a diary i kept when i brought Zoe home. Zoe's luck started the day i saw her in her kennel - Tuesday 30th December 2008. Her life then began with me when i brought her home on Friday 2nd January 2009.
Where do i start with my new girlie Zoe??? To be honest i knew the first day i saw her (tues) she was coming home with me, i just couldn't leave her there, such a sweetie a real darling. Quiet, friendly with soulful eyes.
Wednesday she had gone for her spay and i didn't see her all day.
Thursday i sat in her kennel with her when she appeared back from surgery and i cried, she was sooo down and sad. So the home vet was sorted and ok'ed, and i was going to take her and foster her.
Friday she sat by her kennel door all day as i passed with many other dogs that needed walking, i think she knew i was taking her! Her kennel was situated in a way that you had to pass her kennel door each time to take dogs out for their walks and return them to their kennels. She was as good as gold all the way home in the car and slept the whole way, which turned out to be 4 hours as i had two others in the car i was transporting to foster homes.
Saturday not a peep from her all night, is learning fast that the garden is for toilet, has been for a stroll. And not even 24 hours into my home and she is staying, she has a new bed and collar and lead already. I'm a failed fosterer as they say and you know what i knew it!
I've chosen Zoe as it means Life!
What has being a breeding bitch all her life done to Zoe?
The basics which are often overlooked - Zoe hadn't been walked, so she didn't know how to walk on a lead, she wasn't toilet trained and she didn't know what to make of human interaction.
She has had numerous litters which is apparent by her saggy tum and arched back. During her spay there was evidence to suggest she has had multiple caesarians. She had poor muscle in her hind legs probably through lack of any excercise and a tie-mark on her back leg, which sadly hasn't ever gone away. When she first arrived her ears were covered in scabs, which were suggested to be bites from other dogs, or through severe ear infections which led her to shake her head again and again. Zoe also has a chipped tooth and several teeth that are worn down thought to be because of biting the bars of her confinement through boredom. She also has two mis-formed pads on her paws, which cause her trouble when walking on hard surfaces. When Zoe first came to live with me she had frequent problems with bloody blisters popping up between her toes, which required vet treatment that included having them lanced and banadged, it is thought the reason for these occuring is ingrowing hairs and her mis-formed pads.
Zoe - Now
Zoe was believed to be around 5 years old when she was rescued.
She has adapted brilliantly to home-life and rehabilitating her has been the most wonderful experience ever! She has three favourite things in life now her favourite person who happens to be me, food and swimming with me.
I was fascinated with Zoe and kept a Diary to record what i did to help Zoe adjust, i must say i worked hard to help her on her way to being well-adjusted and live the life a dog should. So anybody reading this thinking it is easy don't be fooled, i worked hard and devoted time to her. Also the vet treatment she had for bloody blisters was expensive and also the anaylsis on a lump which was found on her chest was expensive, thankfully it was a lipoma (harmless fatty lump), all money spent is worth it but something to remember when taking on an ex-breeding bitch.
I recorded her first bark (06/01/09), the first time she wee'd on a walk which she wouldn't do at first (11/01/09). The first time i saw her dreaming in her sleep (11/01/09) and the first pub trip to discover humans eat at the pub (16/01/09) and her first beach trip (20/01/09). And many other things i could bore you with!
There is one last date i must mention October 20th 2009, Zoe was assessed to become a Pets As Therapy dog - she passed! She enjoys her visits especially when digestive biscuits are involved from residents!
Zoe is a happy, loving, beautiful brown bear and i think she is wonderful and i love her very very much.
The photograph below shows a transformed happy girl!
07/06/10 - Zoe had an operation on the cyst on her eye lid around 3 weeks ago, which i was very apprehensive about doing because of the anaesthetic and leaving her. But it had gotten quite big and was beginning to obstruct her view so i decided to go ahead and have it done. I am so so pleased i did she looks fabulous and her hair has grown back so quickly! Heres a pic of before and after:
The photograph above was taken when Polly was rescued from a puppy farm.
Very very sadly Polly couldn't carry on her journey in life and in January 2011 slept peacefully, please read on for the full story
Where it started:
I deliberately tried to stay away from becoming attached to Polly when she was rescued but i failed miserably.
I can remember quite clearly when Polly arrived at kennels (30/06/09), she was in the bottom cage of the collecting van, after saying i didn't want to be involved in any unloading of the new arrivals as they were all labradors, knowing my weakness was exactly that especially the chocolate variety, but still i stepped onto that Van and knelt down to a sweet, inquisitive, small brown labrador in her crate sniffing my hands but with scared, mistrusting eyes and with overwhelming hard bumpy ears. This is exactly where it all started for Polly....the moment i saw her.
After that moment i disappeared for sometime and cried a bit for her, as i wanted to take her home and give her the life i knew i could give her. But life isn't that easy, there were other issues that i needed to consider before just making the decision to adopt her.
The week i spend at the kennels was hard, praying that somebody would rehome her by the time i went home but at the same time praying she wasn't adopted just so i could take her home. During that week i spent quite a bit of time with her. And i took her home with me on the 8th July 2009.
Her name had to be Polly as she is a Pretty Polly, small, beautiful with gorgeous brown eyes and Polly pocket because she is compact and small.
What has being a breeding bitch done to Polly?
Polly was believed to be around 2/3 year old when she was rescued.
Again the basics which are often taken for granted, Polly hadn't walked on a lead before, she wasn't toilet trained and would often pee with anxiety/fear when people would greet her.
Polly arrived in a bit of a state physically, she had mange, poor muscle on her hind legs, haematomas in her ears, a saggy tummy and still expressing milk.
Polly had been handed over by the puppy farmer she lived her life with as she had sadly given birth to 1 dead puppy just 2 days before being given up. But luckily this meant the start of Polly's life away from breeding. Simple equation here - No puppies = no money for puppy farmer.
Polly - Now
Again the process of rehabilitating Polly has been so rewarding, her fear of people has improved, her muscle tone in her hind legs has built up, she has grown a beautiful shiny coat, her saggy tummy has improved lots and she now has happy eyes! Not an easy journey but i've loved every minute of the hard work and devotion to her needs!
On 11th February Polly was assessed to become a Pets As Therapy dog - she passed! Polly also loves to retrieve, so i have been doing some retrieve training with her which she adores!
Polly is kind, beautiful, exciting, attentive and i love her very very much!
At the beginning of 2010 Polly was diagnosed with muscle atrophy of the head, muscle wasting and nerve damage to the left side of her head. These symptoms in an older dog may point to a tumour, however Polly is young and it indicated a trauma to her head at some point, this could have been self inflicted whilst running about jumping for a ball or playing with Lucy, but i don't recall her yelping. It could be a previous head trauma, maybe at some point she has been hit over the head? Her behaviour when she first came to live with me certainly indicated some negative contact with humans. We are never going to know. The good thing is that her head hasn't deteriorated any further and although you can still see the dip in her head, she is as beautiful as ever and her general behaviour hasn't changed. She may even over time gain the nerves back in that area. But for now she is waiting for her vet check which for the first time since it appeared is down to every 6 weeks.... just to make sure all is well!
07/06/10 - A little update on Polly's head. We think it has improved and my vet agrees! I'm very very pleased. Still don't know what happened. We are still keeping it under watch. The first pic shows the dip in Polly's head in March (on left in pic) and the second pic was taken last weekend.
Polly was diagnosed with Central Nervous system Lymphoma on 24th Dec 2010, an incredibly rare cancer in dogs, she also developed megaesophagus around the same time. Words can't describe what you feel when you are told this.
Lucy is my very special beautiful girl!
Lucy has aided me to learn all i have about canines!
Having learnt all i have, i have suspicions about the so called breeder Lucy came from was maybe a small time pet breeder or maybe a seller of puppy farmed dogs. A lesson which i've learnt and which has led me to where i am now.
Let me tell you about some of my girls achievements:
Lucy is a Pets as Therapy dog who visits regularly in a care home, where she makes a difference to the residents. Lucy has represented the charity at Crufts in 2008, 2009 and 2010, taking part in fundraising on stalls and parades in various rings.
Feb 2007 Lucy took part in filming for Its Me or the Dog for an IQ test which she won jointly with another dog. It was a fab day, and i was so proud of Lucy Locket.
September 2007 Lucy became a finalist for JWB/ADPT Tails of Achievement Awards, it was a fabulous day, one which will never be forgotten.
Once again Lucy became a finalist for Tails of Achievement Awards in 2008. Another wonderful day. I felt i had to nominate Lucy again for this award as she deserved it!
Lucy was Companion Dog Club Member of the month for March 2008.
Lucy was a runner up in the Dogs Trust Honours Awards 2009.
Lucy aided me to win The Shaun McAlpine Award for 2009 and joined me in the ring when i was presented with the award.
2009 also made Lucy and Zoe the winners of the KC's We Love our Dogs Award, and here is the video that won.
The Photograph above was taken on the day of Tessy's rescue.
Such a difference living in a home with me, she looks like a different dog in the below photograph.