In early June I was contacted about taking in 7 English Setters from living a life of misery in southern Illinois. Their owner was very ill and they needed help. As the pictures started coming in, I knew I had to line up foster homes fast. Many were tied up with chains and a few others were confined to cages above ground where they had to pee and defecate over the bars.
On June 11th, the first 3 girls came on transport, and they were all in rough shape-- very thin, dirty; and one Mamasita had a terrible wound on her front left leg and 2 huge mammary masses besides an eye infection. All of the dogs were a bit reactive and stressed.
I immediately took them to my vet and we did bloodwork which included a Complete Blood Count and Chemistry, tick serology and 4DX snap test. They were all updated on their vaccinations too. Sadly all three girls-- Mamsita, Gracie and Liz Beth were heartworm positive. Unfortunately, all 3 also tested positive for Lyme disease. So we started them in our heartworm slow kill treatment plan, which also includes antibiotics to help with the Lyme disease.
On June 18th, Grimm and Dorthea came up on transport and also got their vetting updated. Both are also infected with heartworms and Lyme diseases. Both also started in our heartworm slow kill program.
These dogs lived secluded lives, and everything was new to them. Mamasita-- especially was very irritable, was very reactive to any dogs coming near her and some of the other dogs were a little snarky. Our foster homes hung in there, and after several weeks of antibiotics, most of the aggression is gone, and their true sweet personalities are coming through. ALL of Mamasita's crabbiness is gone-- she is feeling so much better. It's gratifying to see them all starting to feel better. Her natural instincts are also beginning to kick in as she started pointing.
Sadly, Mamasita's recovery is going to be complicated. First, she needs to be strong enough for surgery, especially with the heartworm and Lyme diagnosis. We will be doing chest x-rays hoping that the cancer has not metastasized anywhere else in her body. Second, it will take months or even more than a year for her to test negative for heartworms. Third, Lyme disease is not curable but manageable, and once she gets through the significant parts of her treatment plan, I will need to find a thoughtful adopter that will give her the best care for the rest of her life.
The vetting expenses to help 1 of these special dogs will be over $1,000 each. Mamasita's expenses will be much more with the mammary surgery and x-rays. We need a lot of help with fundraising to help these dogs recover so we can continue to help so many more in need. Thanks, Lisa