Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Kelly - Life at her New Ranch

By Angela

Kelly and her Brother, Simon, Sitting Pretty
Iris’ family knew she was the perfect addition to their family when they adopted her this past April from Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue. She was part of the flower litter, but now goes by the name Kelly. Since moving into her forever home at Crescent Moon Ranch she is doing great! Kelly now weighs 37 pounds and is four months old. She loves her morning country walk at six o’clock in the morning followed by chores such as rounding up and feeding the sheep and horses, filling water buckets and running through the fields to close the access gates… she completes this all before breakfast.

Kelly loves playing in her wading pool of cool water and then lounging on the porch with her brother, Simon. The two of them made it their job to assist us in keeping a watch on the property!

At the Ranch we are tackling some sort of project or job and Kelly loves to be involved in whatever the task is. Our new girl is extremely loved and has made an amazing addition to our family! 
Frisbee time for Kelly!

Kelly -  Almost the Same Size at the Horses!! 

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Protecting your Dog from Canine Parvovirus

Cajin - now Scraps beat Parvo


What It Is  
Canine parvovirus is a contagious virus mainly affecting dogs. The disease is highly contagious and is spread by direct or indirect contact with infected their feces. Parvo can be especially severe in puppies that are not protected by maternal antibodies or vaccination. It has two distinct presentations; a cardiac and intestinal form. Common signs of the intestinal form are extreme vomiting and dysentery. The cardiac form causes respiratory or cardiovascular failure in young puppies. Treatment often involves veterinary hospitalization. Vaccines can prevent this infection, but mortality can reach 91% in untreated cases. Canine parvovirus will not infect humans.

Where It Comes From
Parvo is highly contagious and is spread by direct or indirect contact with infected their feces. The disease can be easily spread by shoes, clothing and other objects that came into contact with inflected stool. Fleas can also be a transmitter of Parvo. Where the disease originally commenced is unknown. 

Dogs that develop the disease show symptoms of the illness within 3 to 10 days. The symptoms include lethargy, vomiting, fever, and diarrhea (usually bloody). Diarrhea and vomiting result in dehydration and secondary infections can set in. Due to dehydration, the dog's electrolyte balance can become critically affected. Because the normal intestinal lining is also compromised, blood and protein leak into the intestines leading to anemia and loss of protein, and endotoxins escaping into the bloodstream, causing endotoxemia. Dogs have a distinctive odor in the later stages of the infection. The white blood cell level falls, further weakening the dog. Any or all of these factors can lead to shock and death. The first sign of canine parvovirus is lethargy. Usually the second symptoms would be loss of appetite or diarrhea followed by vomiting.

Survival rate depends on how quickly the parvovirus is diagnosed, the age of the animal and how aggressive the treatment is. Treatment usually involves extensive hospitalization, due to severe dehydration and damage to the intestines and bone marrow. Treatment ideally also consists of crystalloid IV fluids and/or colloids, antinausea injections, and antibiotic injections. IV fluids are administered and antinausea and antibiotic injections are given subcutaneously, intramuscularly, or intravenously. A blood plasma transfusion from a donor dog that has already survived parvovirus is sometimes used to provide passive immunity to the ill dog. Once the dog can keep fluids down, the IV fluids are gradually discontinued, and very bland food slowly introduced. Oral antibiotics are administered for a number of days depending on the white blood cell count and the dog's ability to fight off secondary infection. However, even with hospitalization, there is no guarantee that the dog will be cured and survive.

A puppy with minimal symptoms can recover in 2 or 3 days if the IV fluids are begun as soon as symptoms are noticed and the parvovirus test confirms the diagnosis. If more severe, depending on treatment, puppies can remain ill from 5 days up to 2 weeks. However, even with hospitalization, there is no guarantee that the dog will be cured and survive.

A dog that successfully recovers from parvovirus generally remains contagious for up to three weeks, but it is possible they may remain contagious for up to six.

Untreated cases of canine parvovirus have a mortality rate approaching 91%. With aggressive treatment, survival rates may approach 80-95%.

Prevention is the only way to ensure that a puppy or dog remains healthy as the disease is extremely virulent and contagious. The virus is extremely resilient and has been found to survive in feces and other organic material such as soil for over a year. It can endure extreme cold and hot temperatures.

Puppies are generally vaccinated in a series of doses, extending from the earliest time that the immunity derived from the mother wears off until after that passive immunity is absolutely gone. Older puppies (16 weeks plus) are given three vaccinations three to four weeks apart. The duration of immunity of vaccines has been found to be at least three years after the initial puppy series and a booster a year later.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

My First Foster - and I Failed!

By Amanda A.

Amanda, Tobbie and Mylow
My journey with MMDR started in spring of 2011. I had just bought my first house and was really thinking about getting a sibling for my Pug, Tobbie. I was doing some research online and came across MMDR. I thought while I was deciding wether to adopt or not, maybe I`d foster. The day after my home inspection I got a call to pick up an 8 week old Shepherd Cross. I rushed out and got her, her name was Vi. I brought her home and soon realized I had ended up with the sweetest pup. The weekend came and I was to bring her to an adoption fair. I showed up close to tears, still unsure if I wanted to keep her or not. I sat in a corner with her on my lap for the first hour. I stepped out of the fair to go get coffee, and cried the whole time. That was when I realized that I needed this pup more than she needed me. I rushed back to the fair, scooped her up and took her home. I renamed her Mylow that night (I didn`t like Vi, but knew if I remaned her she wasn`t going anywhere) and sent in my adoption papers the next day. Yes, I am a victim of the first foster fail! Adopting my girl was the best decision I ever made. She is an amazing dog, and I ended up with the better addition to my family then I ever thought possible. 

I took some time off of fostering while my girl settled in, but now I am opening up my home again and couldn`t be happier. Making the decision to foster was one of the best decisions I ever made. In the past few months I have seen quite a few puppies, rotate through my house.  My current foster is tired out from a visit with my nieces, and sleeping with her head on my foot as I write this. Being a part of the MMDR community and being able to help mutts in need is a great expierence. No one says that it is easy. Seeing fosters go to their furever homes is super hard, but knowing that without you opening up your home and saving a life, these dogs would have never had a chance to be warm and loved! Makes it all worth it!

Amanda currently is the Event Coordinator for Manitoba Mutts and remains a long term foster for the rescue.  

Baby Mylow

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Clinging to Life at Six Weeks - Kix


Recovery Time for Kix
Kix’s life began in a way that no dog should have to suffer…. On July 13th, 2012 Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue (MMDR) was informed about a homeless six week old puppy that had been brutally attacked by a larger dog in a northern community. The puppy, Kix suffered severe injuries and deep tears in his skin and was very close to death. MMDR made the decision to fly Kix into care and rushed him to Southglen Animal Hospital. Upon arrival Kix was too hurt and traumatized to perform surgery but was kept comfortable and made it through the night. His surgery finally occurred at 9:00am on Monday, July 16th, 2012, as they had to wait until his protein levels increased before surgery could take place, in addition, his little puppy body is not strong enough to tolerate the anesthesia. The vets at Southglen Animal Hospital were very positive and hopeful for a full recovery. The veterinarian bills for Kix are extremely expensive – MMDR is doing our best to cover the expenses but were desperate need for donations.

With the generous donations from the amazing people of Manitoba and some organizations MMDR raised most of the money needed for Kix’s surgery. The surgery went very well, Kix was stapled up and off to his foster home to recover with his required antibiotics, however he was not in the clear just yet. He has had a few scares with ripping staples and oozing wounds resulting in being rushed to the vet but has been able to avoid infection. Kim, Kix’s foster mom, is keeping his wounds clean to avoid infection and nursing him back to health.  

Kix is currently making up for some lost time and eating like a horse. He has been recovering and enjoying some of the sunshine. He has a big heart and a lot of determination – we look forward to a full recovery.

We have had quite a bit of interest in adopting Kix, however he will not be up for adoption for some time as he needs to recover fully first. In the mean time, we have many other puppies and dogs that also deserve a great home and a second chance at life.  

If you would like to donate to Kix’s recovery please visit: http://www.manitobamutts.org/donate.html.  

Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue would like to send out a sincere Thank You to everyone that had donated and supported Kix in his time of needs. Also, thank you to all the media coverage that brought awareness to Kix and the MMDR organization. 

Severely Hurt Kix was a fighter

Comfortable before Surgery 

All Stapled up and ready for Recovery

Friday, 13 July 2012

Foster Failing 101 - Do not Choose your "Ideal Type"

Talla & Cosmo
By Kori Gray

I have been involved with MMDR almost since the beginning as a foster, now Volunteer Coordinator.

Growing up our family dog was a little Maltese named Buster. I loved him but could never imagine having another little white yappy dog. I LOVE big mutts and have a 10 year old 140lb dog named Beau….now that is my kind of dog!

Last spring I was asked if I could come pick up a Miniature American Eskimo to foster. There were several Eskies brought into care at the time that were pulled from an animal hoarding situation. I did not know what to expect as I have seen some awful cases involving animal hoarding. My mother came with me to pick up the dog as I did not have a kennel and wanted someone to hold onto the dog in the car. When we got to the director Sara’s house to pick the dog up, we had to wait a few minutes for Sara to pull the dog out from under the table she was hiding under - she was petrified. The dog was Lilly, a three year old mini Eskie. We took her for a walk around the block so she could get used to us before putting her in the car. She was so afraid I was expecting her to growl, or bite but she just sat there, she would not look us in the eye. She sat on my mom’s lap for the ride and at one point my mom said ‘If this dog could commit suicide she would’…If you saw the expression on Lilly’s face you would have agreed. When we brought her home, she ran in straight to the farthest corner and backed into it. When she walked she would scale the walls, I think she was used to being trampled and that was her ‘safe’ way to get around. After one night she was in totally in love with our big dog Beau, every morning she would wake up, run to Beau and clean his ears and eyes for him. I do not know if Beau enjoyed this but he let her get away with it. Lilly slowly began to come out of her shell, she would want to be in the same room as us but we still weren’t able to reach down to pet her without her running from us. She found a new friend in our cat Cosmo and tried to follow him all over the place. Lilly would follow Beau around and we could see that he was showing her the ropes. She obviously needed a lot of patience and time to come around and reach her full potential. 

We had Lilly in foster for a few months and eventually decided that we would adopt her. I honestly felt that no one would be able to work with her or make the same progress as us (which is naive) but we felt that another move would traumatize her...which is silly but we had made so much progress I felt the need to see it through. It has now been over a year since the adoption, Lilly is now called ‘Talla’, she is such a joy, she is smart, sociable and having a blast going out to the cottage and parks with all her dog buddies. She still has some fear issues when she is in the house but is getting so much better every day. She sneaks into the bed and forces us to put a hand on her head while she sleeps and is so eager to learn new tricks. She can dance, walk on her back legs, bow, spin, “leave it”, and much more. She is a great addition to our family and we are so glad that she came into our lives.

It goes to show you that you may have a certain type of dog in mind but you never know what shape or size the perfect dog for you will end up being, take a chance, I bet you will be happy you did!

Talla, Beau, Ella & Franko

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Layla's Happy New Life

By Amanda B.

My partner and I have wanted a dog collectively and individually for quite some time.  We looked on various sites and heard of dogs through word of mouth.  I came across the Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue through an internet search. We looked and fell in love with the sweet face of what looked to be a golden lab mix.  We applied to meet her instantly.

We were both nervous and excited to meet her. Our nerves were quickly calmed as she was sweeter than expected. We even got to meet her mom, Sunshine (now Marley).  Both their temperaments were great. Her mom had a love for couches, (a trait Layla soon adopted) and was gentle but alert.  Layla was a tired pesky puppy that night and only wished to play in short spurts and kept belly flopping onto the floor to rest. We came prepared with a leash, and we decided to take her home that night.  I think all three of us smiled all the way home.

From the night-time cries that broke our heart to naps on the couch, we honestly could not be happier.  While Layla will be big girl, she thinks she is a lap dog and cannot get enough cuddles.  She has her own goofy personality that is keeping us on our toes (literally! She keeps stealing our socks).  We introduced her quickly to the car, our friends and the joys of the great outdoors.  Our lives in this short time have already improved.  It is great to have someone overjoyed to see you come home, feels refreshing to go out on long evening walks and we are meeting new people all the time as everyone just has to say hello to our gorgeous golden girl. Even though it has been less than two months since we adopted her I can say with all honesty that she is exactly what our ‘family’ was missing.

We just can’t wait for the rest of summer full of swimming, camping, trips to the dog park and walks around the community.  I would highly suggest, f you are serious about owning a dog, to consider a Manitoba Mutt Dog Rescue Dog.  Not only have we been connected with a great community of dog lovers, but everyone knows that mutts are the way to go!

-Amanda Bibeau, Henry Cortens & Layla

Friday, 6 July 2012

My Foster Experience

Handsome Heff - Dan's current foster boy!

By Dan A. 

Being a foster for rescue dogs is a rewarding experience. I have fostered many dogs for Manitoba Mutts and it has taught me a variety of elements regarding their behaviours and tendencies.

Being a foster has taught me:

1.  The very shy and/or nervous dogs usually turn out to be very affectionate and caring dogs once given steady meals and a bit of attention. The key is to be very patient with them and not force anything quickly.

2.  Getting upset at a dog does not solve anything; the nervous ones will have an accident on the floor. You need to talk to them slowly and give them lots of eye contact. You would be surprised how much they really do understand. Remain calm and be assertive.

3.  Dogs need rules and leadership from their foster person or family. They usually behave better if they now what is expected of them and have a schedule. I feed my dogs the same time everyday and try and put them to bed the same time every night. I bribe them with treats to get them to go in their kennel by tossing a treat in their kennel and they run in to get it. Food is the best training tool.

As a foster, I am still learning and hope to master the following:

1.    How to walk two large dogs at the same time without going for a run...

2.   Figure out how to stop Heff from climbing my five foot chan link fence and going into the neighbour’s backyard. With Heff weighing in at 80 pounds it is hard on the back having to lift him over the fence and drop him down back in my yard. However I guess I did learn that Heff only knows how to climb once side of the fence! 

I have learned much from my fosters and have a lot more to learn. Hopefully I can show my fosters how to be good family dogs so that they can enjoy a healthy, happy life.

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Summer Safety Tips for your Pooch

Alex Monday is ready for summer! 

With summer finally here is it important to ensure your pooch is safe and healthy during these next few months. With the heat, time spent outdoors and those irritating insects make sure to take the proper precautions to ensure your dog’s safety.

  1. Heart worm is a serious disease in Canada, especially communities that have a vast mosquito population – such as Manitoba. Ensure that you speak to your veterinarian and take the proper steps to ensure your dog is tested and vaccinated against this disease. For more information on heart worm visit: http://mbmutts.blogspot.ca/2012/04/protecting-your-dog-against-heartworm.html

  2. Almost as bothersome as the mosquito, the wood tick can cause grievance to your dog as well. Ticks can carry bacteria which cause lime disease in dogs (and other animals). Prepare your dog for meetings with these blood suckers by applying a tick control medication prior to going into the long grass and forrest. These can be purchased from your veterinarian or from your favourite pet supplies store. Be sure to purchase the correct dosage for the size of your dog. If you find a tick attached to your dog’s skin, do not panic, it must be attached into the blood stream for about 18 hours before the lime disease can spread into your dog’s blood stream. For more information on lime disease visit: http://mbmutts.blogspot.ca/2012/05/protecting-your-pooch-from-lyme-disease.html

  3. With hot weather hydration is extremely important to your dog’s health. Watch for signs for dehydration, dogs cannot sweat; they pant and drool when they are over heated (their eyes can also become blood shot and they can lose their balance). Ensure you have extra water for your dog when outdoors and after a long run at the park. Also, look for creative ways to cool down you dog – kiddie pool, sprinklers and spray bottles are good options. Also, there is no better way to cool down than a family swim with your dog! And please, NEVER leave your dog in a parked car.

  4. Understand any dog health hazards at your cabin or campground and determine if there are any addition threats that you should prepare your dog for. Ask the park officials or ask your veterinarian if there are any health concerns that they are aware of regarding the location of your cabin or campground.

Most of all ensure you are spending quality time with you pooch and the rest of the family this summer! There are lots of dog friendly picnic recipes and great place t o take your dog in the summer months. From all of us at Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue have a safe and happy summer! 

Monday, 2 July 2012

Our Missing Puzzle Piece, Wendell

By Jessica R.

If my family was missing a puzzle piece, Wendell would have  been the piece that was missing. I really wish our other dog Morgan could have met him before he passed away. Wendell has a great attitude and seems to have integrated into our pack with resounding speed. He has just the right amount of energy to keep up with us, but also enough relax in him that we can just chill out and enjoy him. He respects our 4 pound Yorkie to the point that I wonder if Gaffer is boss over him already, which would not surprise me! He loves boat rides, horseback rides and camping… we have done lots with him in these last two weeks and have put him through all his paces… and he is passing with flying colors.

One thing that really surprised us was the amount of training that has gone into him. We really want to commend Dawn for the work she has done with him. Once you get past the bouncing and excited energy that comes from our first meeting, you can see where he has really good boundaries… Sit, down, high fives, stay… we are working on him so he does not enter or leave doors without permission and he has to sit before each door and before the leash goes on and it was so easy to see that this has already been done with him.

We love him lots already in this short period of time. Fate truly stepped in, especially given that this dog has been waiting a year and half to come into our family.

Thank you again,
Jessica, Adam, Gaffer and Wendell.

Wendell's History:
Wendell was adopted from Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue's first litter.  However, he was returned a year later due to anxiety issues.  His family was not the right fit for him, and he needed someone to show him boundaries and work with his energy.  One of our amazing fosters, Dawn worked with him for a very long time to bring him up to a well mannered boy.