Louise is a 3-year-old mixed breed dog — maybe Carolina dog/ shepherd/ other mix. She came to To Love a Canine Rescue (TLC) in February from South Carolina as a stray wandering the streets with her daughter Thelma.
A good Samaritan noticed they were both pregnant and got them to a shelter. The shelter contacted TLC to save the dogs and their puppies from the fate of overcrowded high-kill shelter policies.
While being transported up north from the shelter, Louise gave birth to nine little fur babies in the van. Now she was Sweet Momma Louise.
She was a great mom — cleaning, caring, and nursing the pups until they were ready to strike out on their own. All nine were adopted the first weekend they were available.
Having done her job well with the help of an experienced whelping foster, it was time for Louise to get herself healthy and ready for a forever family.
Poor Sweet Louise is going through life with a lame paw. One of the unfortunate facts of her life is that she was struck at close range by a shotgun blast which left her paw and wrist full of buckshot. No rod or splint can help because there is not enough to attach it to.
The paw, maybe the whole leg, will have to be amputated. Sweet Louise is a trooper. She still uses her foot for balance and hobbling along in the grass, but she protects it by hopping when on pavement.
So why isn’t her paw fixed yet now that she’s done with mommy duty?
Well, Louise is also suffering from heartworm disease. She can’t go under anesthesia for the paw surgery until she is treated for the heartworms, which can be deadly. And the treatment is a long and dangerous process. She had her first injection of Immiticide on June 17th and is on strict orders for limited activity so as the worms die off they don’t break up and give her a clot or clog her lungs. The restriction isn’t as hard for Louise because she is pretty sedentary because of her paw.
Louise returned to Hope Veterinary Specialists for her second round of injections on July 18th, and returned home to her nice, quiet, foster home on the 20th. She will now undergo another month of treatment with prednisone while remaining on crate rest, and will then be assessed by her vet.
When she is finally heartworm free, she will be ready to have her leg evaluated again. The surgeon and the rescue will decide what is in her best interest: having a full amputation or partial amputation and a prosthetic device.
TLC is a small suburban rescue. Sweet Louise has people who care about her, a safe and calm foster home where she can convalesce. The cost to treat Louise’s Heartworm cost about $900 and the cost of her surgery is currently estimated at $4,500. Raising Aid for Dogs At Risk – RADAR Dogs has, generously, provided financial assistance to cover the cost of 1 injection for her heartworm treatment, but we still need to raise the rest for her care, which will cost more than currently projected if a prosthetic is recommended.
When Sweet Louise has finished rehabbing towards the end of the 2016, she will be ready to find her forever home.
Despite all that’s happened to Louise in her past, she remains a sweet & loving dog.
Mini Paws Support
TLC’s Mini Paws, junior volunteers have selected Louise to be this year’s “Saving Southern Souls” beneficiary. Saving Southern Souls is a program during which the kids select a dog to support from being pulled from the shelter through adoption. They follow the dog’s progress and raise funds to pay for the vetting and other care the dog needs while waiting to find their furever home. On July 4th, Mini Paws held their Cold Treats 4 Hot Dogs event at the Rita’s Water Ice in Malvern and raised $290. They also held a “Lather For Louise” dog wash on August 7th and raised $640!
Louise has surgery
Louise’s surgery had to be delayed for a couple of months because, just as we were planning her surgery, she went into heat. On Thursday, November 3rd, she was finally ready to report to Hope Veterinary Specialists for her spay and amputation surgeries. Both procedures went well and, after some post-op observation, she was ready to go back to her foster home to start recuperation on the 5th. According to her foster mom, Louise seems to be adjusting well:
“She is getting around well on the three legs. She didn’t hesitate to get up on the couch. She’s tired from her ordeal and is resting comfortably.”
We expect that it will only take a couple of weeks for Louise to get used to moving around on 3 legs and then she will be ready to start looking for her furever home.
Donate to Louise’s Fund
8/11/16: Thanks to our fundraisers and many generous donors, we have reached our goal of raising $5,500 to pay for Louise’s heartworm treatment & surgery!
Louise starts her happily ever after
Louise turned the page to start a new chapter of her life by getting adopted on 8/2/17! We could not be happier for Louise and her new family, and can’t wait to hear about their adventures together.