I will no longer be updating this site. Instead please click the link below to view my new site and become a member!
Small Dog Rescue is now Happy Tails Pet Adoption Center (or Happy Tails P.A.C.) new e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org
Marvin was found by a kind woman on November 14th/2009. She rushed him to my vet's clinic. He was severely emaciated, dehydrated, and could not even lift his head. He was given a tiny amount of food and was absolutely ravenous! So much so that he had to be muzzled for the rest of the day as he thought that anyone who was handling him was feeding and he tried to nibble at our fingers (and by nibble I mean eat them..!) Once we were able to get a lot of water and a little more food into him he calmed down and the muzzle came off. After about 4 hours he began to be able to lift his head. By the end of the day he was standing. The next day he could hobble/walk. He is improving more each day, he gained almost 1 kg (abut 2 lbs) in just 3 days of being given a proper diet and water. He is so caring and loving and a true cuddle bug!
Because he was so malnourished for so long, his bones and even toenails were not able to grow properly. Many x-rays were taken of his shoulders, legs, and hips. His left shoulder and both right and left wrists are dislocated due to improper bone growth. In one x-ray where his stomach can be seen, you can see wire in it as he was so hungry he must have been eating anything he could get into his mouth.
Right now I am just worrying abut feeding and watering him to help him gain weight and muscle mass (as he has none..) Once that is done and he looks like a dog instead of a sac of bones, he is going to need surgery to repair his limbs and enable him to walk pain-free. These surgeries may cost $2500+ and so I am asking for donations to go towards his cause. They can be made one of two ways:
1) Call McPhillips Animal Hospital (204-589-8381) and let them know you would like to make a donation over the phone with a credit card. The account number is 7823591R. I am asking for minimum donations of $2.
2) I have set up a Paypal account for my rescues, if you wish to donate through Paypal my account there is email@example.com
Please PLEASE tell every one you know about Marvin and this site and have them tell everyone they know etc. If I can just get enough people to donate $2, I should have enough to help save Marvin!
If you would like an e-mail to forward on to people, here is what I have been sending out:
I am sending this bulk e-mail out to as many people as I can in order to try and raise funds for a very special little dog, Marvin. As some of you know I began rescuing dogs & cats in need just over a year ago. Since then about 75 pets have come and go through my home. All of them have been spayed/neutered, vaccinated, dewormed, and seen by a vet for an exam. I had been trying to ask enough for an adoption fee to cover most of the expenses I incurred, though I do not want to know how much of my own money I have spent on my rescues in just one year... Many of them (especially adult cats/older dogs) went for free to a good home.
Marvin is approximately 10 months old (my vet thinks, according to how the growth plates in his bones looked on x-ray). He has been starved his whole life. Someone found him in a back lane on November 14th. He is a husky mix. He weighed 7.1 kg (15.62 lbs). He should be closer to 20 kg (44 lbs). Because he has been so malnourished his whole life, his bones and even toenails have not been able to form properly. He is going to need some major surgeries in the coming months to correct his bone conformation to enable him to walk pain-free.
He is a very loving dog, and a true fighter. My vet cannot understand how he is still alive! He is eating and drinking well with me, he gained 0.9 kg (1.98 lbs) in just 3 days. He seems to feel better now with a full belly.
What am I asking?? I am asking that everyone who receives this e-mail can donate a minimum of just $2 to his cause. This can be done using a credit card over the phone to McPhillips Animal Hospital (204-589-8381) and put on account number 7823591R. I have also set up a paypal account for him, if you wish to donate through paypal, please send it to account firstname.lastname@example.org
I also ask that everyone who receives this e-mail send it to everyone they possibly can. My goal i $2500. His surgeries may cost more than that, I have already done about $500 of tests on him.
Please contact me at email@example.com if you have any questions about him, or would like me to send photos of him. I am also getting videos of him up on youtube.
Thanks SO MUCH in advance for anything anyone is able to do,
Marvin is doing great! He is walking around and thins he is the boss of all the other dogs, and they think he is crazy! He seems to be very happy now and really enjoys coming to work with me every day. Just about $700 has been raised already for Marvin and more is coming. A HUGE thanks to SEVEN OAKS SCHOOL DIVISION who is holding a fundraiser for Marvin! THANKS!!!!!!
Remember, even if you can only afford to donate $1 that will help! Most importantly, tell all your friends and family!
More and more people are stepping up to help. I especially thank Cindy and Olga for all the dedication and help the have provided for Marvin and I. I have spoken with both CJOB and The Winnipeg Sun and they are helping to spread Marvin's story.
More x-rays have been done on Marvin and the wire that was in his abdomen has passed, so that is no longer a worry. Also, his right shoulder is also dislocated. Whether it always was or has become so since the first x-rays, no one knows. I have seen no change in him, in they way he walks or anything, so I think it may have always been dislocated and just didn't look like it was in the first x-ray.
I have spoken with Dr. Bebchuk of Great Plains Veterinary Services (he is a specialized bone surgeon) and he is fascinated with Marvin's case. Marvin will be having his surgery in about a month, once his body is strong enough to undergo the long procedures under anesthetic. He may need 2 surgeries, one for his left, then after he heals, the right to be done, just so his entire front end isn't out of commission all at once.
I am aiming for $3000 now as a goal for fund raising. Especially if he must be anesthetized twice (having the surgeries spread out) it will cost more. Right now we have just hit the $1000 mark so we are going well.
Keep spreading the word! Marvin thanks you!
Below are two x-rays. The one with one on the left (with two legs in it) is Marvin's x-ray. The one on the right, with just one leg is what his legs should look like. You can see that his wrists are not at all where they should be and are pretty much dislocated.
I have to send out a HUGE thank-you to absolutely everyone who has helped with Marvin!! A big thank-you out to all the people who donated any amount, it is so greatly appreciated! Thank-you to the few who donated $100+, I was never expecting anything near that! Special thanks to McPhillips Animal Hospital for providing excellent care for Marvin, Hill's Pet Food company for donating food to Marvin, David & Debbie at Ifix Building Maintenance & Repairs, Cindy K., Olga & the 7 Oaks School Division, Landau Ford, and especially to Joy H. who found Marvin and brought him to us!
The donations we have received put us well on track. I encourage people to continue to donate as we now know we will have to do each leg separately (roughly $2000/leg without complications).
If all goes well and Marvin recovers as expected, he will be up for adoption. There is already 3 families on a waiting list for him, but if you are interested, I can ad your name are we will see when the time comes. He will most likely not be ready for adoption for 2-3 months yet.
If he does not recover fully, or will always need a high amount of care, I am prepared to keep him for his whole life. No matter what, Marvin is safe. He will not be euthanized.
Thanks again to all! Your generosity has helped save this little dog!
If anyone wants to meet Marvin, he is at McPhillips Animal Hospital every day Tues - Sat.
Yesterday Marvin was not feeling as well as normal and it has been suggested to be by my vet to take him to Saskatoon where they have the Western College of Veterinary Medicine. There are many experienced specialists there and he would get the best care possible. The vets here are a little worried about his liver, he may have a congenital defect called a porto-systemic shunt (repairable by surgery) or his liver may have been damaged by malnutrition. Either way the vets in SK should be able to figure out what is going on and fix it as well.
The plan is to leave this Sunday and have him seen this Monday (21st). Right now we have raised enough money to take him and do anything he needs done. He will likely need an MRI, that way we can look at everything and make sure that nothing has been missed.
Otherwise he is still doing great! He keeps trucking on, he seems to be feeling better this morning as I write this. I appreciate all the help that has come pouring in for him, it is wonderful that I didn't have to worry about whether he could afford to go to SK or not.
Thanks SO MUCH for all the cards received from the school kids!! Marvin got to see them all and they are posted up in the waiting room at McPhillips Animal Hospital. I think he loved your visit and it made him feel much better to know that so many people care so much about him!
I will update more later tonight or tomorrow once we have the appointment booked.
Marvin's appointment has been booked for 10:00 am Monday morning in Saskatoon. Myself and a friend will be driving him there and back, we should be back Tuesday.
Thanks again to everyone who donated, large or small, it has made a huge difference! If so many people had not been so generous, there is no way we could afford to take him all the way to SK, where he needs to be.
I will not have access to a computer there, but I will update as soon as possible when I get back.
Wish us luck!!
If you are following Marvin's story, please leave a comment in the guest book and become a member of the website :)Marvin wants to know how many people have heard his story and are looking out for him!! :)
Marvin did well on our journey. He tolerated the car ride very well and had a good time meeting all the new people. Multiple specific blood tests were run as well as a very thorough ultrasound. In the end it has been decided that Marvin has a Porto-systemic Shunt. What this means is that there is a blood vessel that is re-routing blood around his liver instead of allowing it to pass through his liver to be filtered and cleaned.
This is a condition that can be eliminated through surgery. It is a very specific surgery that must be preformed in the clinic we went to in Saskatoon. We have already switched his food to a very low protein diet which has helped already. He is SO bright and alert and PLAYFUL for the first time since I have had him! THANK-YOU to OLGA who bought him a stuffed toy today, he LOVES it and has been playing with it all day
Marvin will be traveling back to SK for his surgery in abut 4 weeks (end of January). He will need to be hospitalized for about 3-4 days at the least. After that he will need 2-3 months for his liver to regenerate itself. Once his liver is no longer giving him any issues, he will finally be able to have his legs repaired. The orthopedic surgeon in Saskatoon is reviewing his x-rays this week and will call with what he feels is the best plan of action for his legs once everything else is good.
As far as costs go, this weekend was about $1700. Next month will be near $5000. Right now we are able to cover that only because of all the generous donations we have received, however the food he is on is $4.30/can and he is eating 2-3 cans/day. He should ideally be on this food for the next 3 months (until his liver is at full capacity again) That will be roughly $1000 in food alone. The food that was donated by Hill's is now, unfortunately, not what he needs. He needs Hill's l/d (liver diet). I am going to talk to Hill's to see if they will donate more, or trade the unopened bag of p/d for l/d.
Finally, the $3000-$4000 of repairing his legs has all gone towards repairing his liver and so we are still accepting donations.
I encourage anyone who wants to meet him to come down to McPhillips Animal Hospital to see him. He LOVES visitors. Just give us a call first (589-8381) to make sure I am here with him.Here are a couple photos of Marvin with his new toy. You can see the big shaved patch on his belly from the ultrasound.
Sorry there haven't been any updates for a while, Marvin's progress has been very steady. He was at 11.2 kg yesterday! His weight gain has been excellent, about 0.1 kg every two or three days! We leave again on Jan. 25th to go back to Saskatoon so he can have surgery to remove the porto-systemic shunt that is allowing his blood to by-pass his liver. He has been doing so amazingly well since we got back the first time with just a simple food change.
About 4 days ago, I noticed he was licking his right hind foot and there was a little sore on it (which he has gotten before on his feet; he get pressure sores occasionally because of the was the bones angle). Yesterday morning though, his entire foot was swollen, right up to his hock, and very painful. Dr. Gould added another type of antibiotic to the list of meds he is on (he was already taking one to keep away a bladder infection he had been fighting since I got him). If his foot is no better today we are going to x-ray to make sure one of the bones did not break. I don't know how he could have broken a bone, but they are very thin and brittle so it wouldn't take much. His foot looks more swollen this morning, but seems less painful for him to walk on it. I will see what the Dr. thinks today when I get to work.
Marvin's bloodwork continues to improve, the chemistry levels in his serum for both his liver and kidneys were better last week than they ever have been, as well, the number of red blood cells in his blood is increasing slowly, but steadily. He is still anemic, though at this rate his bloods should be close to normal by the time we head off for his surgery.
Sorry, no new photos today, I will try and do updtates more often!
Marvin is still doing so well! He has been getting stronger and gaining weight steadily since Christmas time when we arrived back from Saskatoon the first time. He is now 12.4 kg!! Almost DOUBLE the weight he was just 2 months ago.
His foot has completely healed, no one really knew what happened there, but we added a second antibiotic pill to him daily meds and it sure helped!
We will be packing up and driving back to Saskatoon on Monday, Jan. 25th. He will be getting surgery this time. It is to close off the porto-systemic shunt. Though this surgery is risky, letting him go without it isn't fair as he would never be completely healthy, never be able to go off the 5 different medications he has every day, and most of all, would never feel as good as a healthy dog does.
Part of why he is doing so well right now is because we switched him onto a very low protien diet. This diet is easy on his liver, but does not have enough protien to support a dog healthily, long term. Also, the Dr. in Saskatoon said that we cannot expect his anemia to completely resolve until his liver is fixed. Those of you who have come to meet Marvin have seen how quickly he tires when he is playing. That is because of the anemia. He should have much more stamina when the anemia is gone.
So we couldn't leave today because most of the hiways are closed, or in such bad shape travel is not advised. Marvin's appointment is on Wednesday the 27th, so as long as we can get out tomorrow it should be fine!
Wish us luck!!
Sorry for the late update, I have been really busy since I came back and have not had a chance to sit down until now. Marvin is doing great, he did very well through the surgery. When the Dr.s there opened him up, they saw that not only was there one large vessel re-routing the blood around his liver, but there were also hundreds of tiny tiny vessels and capillaries in his liver doing the same. They use a special dye and x-rays to see the vessels while he was under anesthetic. They were able to operate on the large one, but there is nothing that can be done about the little ones. There are just too many and it would be too invasive.
In about 6 weeks I will be repeating a blood test on Marvin (called Bile Acids). This will tell me if the surgery helped at all. We are hoping for a change, it is possible that this surgery will be helpful, but not likely that it will make him 100% better.
The best thing Marvin has going for him is his attitude. He is always happy, he enjoys himself, loves people and truly wants to live. He is a fighter, and as long as we don't give up, he won't either. We appreciate all the prayers and good luck wishes; Marvin loves everyone that has come and continue to come to say hi to him, the best part of his day is when someone new comes to meet him!
So many people keep asking me how he is :) He has been doing so well, I have started leaving him at home a bit more instead of taking him to work everyday, but he seems a bit depressed, I guess he wants to come with me, so I will start brining him again.
I am going to be sending his blood off to the lab tomorrow to check a certain liver level (a test called Bile Acids) to see how much or how little his body was affected by the surgery. The results of this test will tell me if he will be able to be adopted out, or at least what type of care he will need by his adopter. There is one person who is most likely going to adopt Marvin, if it does not work out though, I am wondering how many other people would be seriously interested in adopting him. He likely will not live a long life, but I want it to be happy for him. I think he is happy now. He plays, barks, roughs around with the other dogs - he looks happy.
I would like if the person who adopted him had LOTS of time to spend with him. Either a family with one person not working, or who works part time, or a family who works alternating shifts, so someone is there with him lots.
He would also LOVE to go to a home where he could get out and see new people. I believe his absolute favorite thing to do is to meet new people. If he could go to a school or retierment home, or anything like that on a weekly basis, he would be so happy.
The last thing is money. I do have some money left over from what was raised and I will continue to cover his vet costs until that money is gone, no matter who owns him at the time, it is not my money, it is his. The money though, will run out and whoever adopts him is going to need to be able to afford anything he may need, from his food (about $100/month) to bloodwork, to trips to the vet (both planned and emergencies), I need to know he is in good hands.
Anyway, like I said, there is likely someone who will take him, he has been asking all along if it would be possible for him to adopt Marvin, but things can change and if he cannot care for him, I would like to find someone who can.
Thanks to all who keep reading, sorry I do not update more often, there really isn't much to say (and that is a good thing) Marvin continues to do well (as well as he can anyway) and if something bad happens, I will post as soon as I can. As for the results from the blood, I will have them up as soon as I get them, about a week or so.
If the results are good, Marvin is up for his neuter!! That should help him to gain a bit more weight too... :)
Marvin was doing so well and about 4 days ago his leg got all swollen again. It didn't go down on it's own like it normally does and it began to be extremely painful for him. After 2 days of it staying swollen, the Dr. decided to lance it (stick a small scalpal blade into it to relieve the pressure) and lots of blood and infection came out. The Dr. sutured a drain in place to allow the fluid to continue to drain. The day before yesterday it was starting to look much better, the draining fluid was more straw colored and not solid blood as it had been. The swelling had also gone almost completely down. Yesterday I brought him to work for the Dr. to recheck and when I picked him up I saw that there was a big hole right through his skin just above his hock on the back of his left hind leg. There also were areas where the skin had turned black. We have been flushing it wtih an antiseptic rinse, have him on IV antibiotics every 4 hours and are wrapping his leg, changing the bandage 3 times daily. All the skin that had turned black is now sloughing off, but there are no new areas of necrosis (dead tissue) and the areas that have already sloughed looked good and pink and healthy now.
Unfortunately this sets back his neuter, and his adoption. It will likely take him a longer time to heal than a normal dog would because of the issues he has with his liver.
He is again spending his days at McPhillips Animal Hospital, if anyone would like to come say "Hi" to him, I know he would really like that!!
Marvin's leg has been healing at an incredible pace! He definitely will not need surgery to close it. We have been doing a bandage change every day and packing the wound with honey donated by Smith's Honey and Seed Farm in Oakbank (204-444-3908 if you want to order some!) The honey creates an enviroment where bacteria cannot grow. It also gives lots of nutrients directly to the tissue and stimulates new growth. I expect that by the end of next week, or beginning of the one after that he will be able to have his neuter (the lucky guy!) and then 10 or so days after that he should be ready to be adopted.
As I said before, there is someone who likely will be taking him, but if you are interested, please let me know and I'll keep you in mind!
Marvin's leg has completely healed from the infection about a week ago. He is doing super, though he does have small sores on both left feet. I think they are from pressure sores because of the way his feet are "put together"..... If anyone knows of someone who could maybe make some padded booties for him so that this doesn't happen, please let me know :)
I am waiting to hear back from someone in the States about possibly adopting Marvin, if there is anyone else who is seriously adopting him, please contact me.
Sadly, Marvin took a turn for the worse this weekend. He was doing great until Sunday when his legs (front right, left hind, and left front) began to swell again. His front right was the worse. Monday they became extremely painful and he was hospitalized. This morning (Tuesday) they opened up again and my vet believes that it is the same bacteria (Streptococcus canis - the "flesh eating disease" of dogs) that caused his previous infection. Because of the amount of pain Marvin was in and that he could not walk, my vet advised that this is the time to let Marvin go. He was euthanized tonight. Thanks to everyone who helped with Marvin, whether it was donations or coming to see him, or even an e-mail to wish him luck, he wouldn't have gotten this far without all the help he and I recieved from hundreds of people.
I have to share this one last photo of him, taken tonight.