Avery - A Special German Shepherd
After spending some time with the spunky little shepherd, it was clear that Avery was up against some long odds of anyone from the general public coming in to the shelter and adopting her. Avery’s back end and hips were wobbling, she was listed as 8 years old, and she would need to be the only dog in the household. Those are tough odds for any dog in a shelter environment.
We kept in touch with one of the shelter managers and cross-posted Avery’s picture and story to help generate some interest in hopes that Avery might be adopted from the shelter. There were no takers for Avery and no other rescues available or that had the resources to take in Avery, a dog that with a low probability of being adopted, a dog that might possibly need surgery or some other type of rehabilitation program for her weak hips.
It didn’t take any strong engineering or financial skills to do a cost analysis or probability tree to realize that we would be taking a risk bringing her into our program. We knew that there was a high likelihood that she would be in our program permanently. The cold hard facts are that each rescue, big or small, has finite resources and sometimes has to say “no.” The shelter had gone above and beyond for Avery, especially given that she had no takers for a number of months.
Avery was out of options and soon to be out of time. Despite knowing the odds were stacked against her, to turn our back on Avery would be to turn our back on our mission. In rescue sometimes you just have to believe. Our mission at Sedona is to take that leap of faith on a dog like Avery. Since being in our care, Avery has responded well to her acupuncture treatments, though she still continues to wobble in her hips when she is active. She has a little motor in her that never stops and Avery just loves to chase her tennis ball, or soccer ball.
Like all dogs, Avery has her little quirks that only make her more adorable to us. In the first month in our program we had three potential adopters or foster homes, but each fell through for different reasons. We are still looking for her guardian angel to provide her with a home to play in, sleep in, enjoy her retirement years and provide her new family with companionship and joy. Please help us make Avery’s story complete and allow us to take leaps on faith with other dogs like Avery.
It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing away of Avery, one of the earliest dogs saved by Sedona Shepherd. Avery was a remarkable dog. She was feisty and friendly, lovable and intense. Avery first came to our attention from a worker at the Hempstead Shelter in Long Island. She had been found as a stray and was not kenneling well. Her back legs were a little wobbly, she had bloodied her tail from whipping it back and forth so hard against her kennel walls, and she wasn’t particularly friendly with other dogs. All in all, Avery didn’t have much of a chance of getting into a home.
When we met her, we fell in love with her spunk. Despite eventually being diagnosed with wobblers syndrome, degenerative myelopathy, arthritis, and a prior broken tail, Avery had a motor that kept on running. We knew it would be difficult to find a home for her, but we knew our mission was to help dogs like Avery. Over the years in our program, Avery received acupuncture and other treatments, medications and supplements for her muscular-skeletal and back issues. In the fall of 2015, we caught up with an old rescue friend who had recently lost her dog and did not have any other animals. She was moved by Avery’s story and spunk and agreed to be her permanent foster mom.
Avery’s prior life was most likely a difficult one. Her foster mom did everything to make Avery’s last two years of her life rewarding and full of joy. Avery was a constant companion, whether it be on the tennis court, trips to conventions, client visits, shopping or family trips to Michigan, Avery got to do it all. When her back legs gave out, we set up Avery in a cart donated by one of our supporters, extending her life for another year. Even the cart didn’t slow Avery down, she still played catch, took trips to the beach and was a constant ‘rear view driver.’
There is a saying, “Saving one dog will not change the world, but surely for that one dog, the world will change forever.” Avery’s foster mom, truly made sure that Avery’s life changed for the best. We know that Avery was forever grateful, even during her feistier times. Avery’s journey could not have been completed without help from so many people and organizations. Hopefully we do not forget anyone, but we would like to thank (not in any particular order):
The staffs at American Animal Hospital, Crown Veterinary Hospital, Fanwood Animal Hospital, Animal Clinic of Morris Plains and Animal Emergency & Referral Associates.
Pam, Hollie and the staff at Tip Top Kennels. Suzanne and the staff at Elizabeth Ann Kennels. The staff and volunteers at The Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter.
Dr. Aleda Cheng for her acupuncture and alternative treatments. Dr. Frantz for easing her way over the rainbow bridge.
Cecile and Joe for donating Avery’s cart and items. Arlene for helping out on those occasional short term overnights. Lisa, Maggie, Kim, Cindy, and all the volunteers who spent time with Avery. Mark for taking some amazing photos of Avery. Everyone who donated to Avery’s Go Fund Me page, especially Monica for being ready to adopt Avery from all the way out in Colorado.
And an amazing thanks to Kimberly for being Avery’s guardian angel for 2 years. Although it is a sad time, there is a joy in celebrating Avery’s life and an embrace of the goodness that so many people showed in saving Avery.
In the beginning of the fall, her legs and joints really began to bother her and we switched her over to a new protocol of rimadyl and tramadol. Since then she has been moving much better and is always anxious to get outside and patrol her home or just play with a toy.
Additionally we recently signed her up for 6 treatments of cold laser therapy, which has helped her joints loosen up and increased her mobility. While the acupuncture treatment she received earlier this year was successful, Avery doesn't always easily sit still. Consulting with her vet, we felt that the laser therapy would be more therapeutic. She is still looking for her animal free forever home, but in the meantime, she is enjoying the comforts of her foster home.