|Barked: Wed Apr 16, '08 4:36pm PST |
|I wasn't sure where to put this, so a mod suggested this forum (Thanks Jasmine!!).
Since the Oprah show, I have seen many puppy mill threads and find people here are looking for information. I thought that those of us who own PM dogs could post their stories, background and where they are now.
Kaluha came from a Lancaster PA mill. He spent 10 years in a tiny cage producing puppies for the pet trade.
Last March, some rescue friends of mine got a call to pick up a load of dogs by the weekend, or the miller was going to shot them. I was asked if I would take the three poms, two bred out females and Kaluha.
Ginger and Brandy, the females, were a little friendlier and quickly adopted. Kaluha had issues.
He came to us with that dead look in his eyes, the one that says "Do with me what you will, I don't care anymore". He reeked that smell that PM dogs have, one that doesn't wash away, and seems to be embedded in their skins.
His mouth smelled like rotten garbage and the vet said she had never seen worse teeth. He lost most of them and would have lost them all, except the vet was afraid that pulling anymore would shatter his jaw.
He has a heart mummer and is missing a lower eyelid. His conformation is so bad that the vet advised against exercising him.
The worst part was his total fear of humans. He would not eat out of a dish and refused food if anyone was in the room.
You see, millers use food to lure dogs close enough to grab them.
He eventually learned to trust DH, who fell so in love with him that he refused to part with him, so, after about 8 months, I finally gave up and agreed to make Kaluha dog #6.
It took 6 months till he would take food from our hands, but after over a year, he waits and expects his treats with the rest of the dogs.
He can't go up and down steps, so gets carried every time we go outside. If anyone but daddy or mommy is carrying him, he will squirm and try to jump out of their arms.
While playing is a normal part of life for most dogs, Kaluha doesn't play...until last week when, for the first time, he played a 2 minute game of hide and seek with Daddy. It may sound like a small thing, but for Kaluha, it is huge and we celebrated appropriately.
I don't think Kaluha will ever be "normal", but he is ours and we will love him till he has to leave us for the bridge and look forward to being reunited with him, whole and healthy, on the other side.