Male, 11½ years old
Beau Neutered Dog aged 6 and a half
Beau was brought by a lady as a puppy but her daughter turned out to be very allergic to his fur and so a friend took him on. And he lived with this family for the next 5 years. Then the owner had to move house and go into rented accommodation and it turned out that the landlord would not allow large dogs at the property.
Beau had seen the vets a few months before this came about as he was in pain and the vet thought he had a disc problem in his back the x rays showed that he had calcium growths in between the discs his back. The owner had no pet health insurance and whatever was/could be done would be expensive.
He was treated by the vet with pain killers whilst the owner tried to get someone to do a full investigation and agree to do an operation to sort this out whilst several organisations were asked they would not commit to helping Beau. Beau is a very big tall dog and at this time he was also overweight because of the pain he was in and the lack of exercise because of this. He was on pain killers but nothing else.
Eventually the owner had to move into her rented accommodation it was then she contacted British Dalmatian Welfare to see if we could help with getting him rehomed and see if we could help with his back problems.
We put out an appeal to ask for someone to foster Beau. We had no idea at this time what the extent of his problems were and at the time we had no adopters on our books who would have been able to take him. Time was running out so we asked for someone to foster him and take him though the process of getting his weight down taking him to vets and getting the full extent of his pain and back problems assessed.
We were very lucky to have a couple who were very willing to take him knowing that he was going to be backwards and forwards to a vet or a veterinary hospital. Beau was picked up by one of our volunteers from Buxton and driven part way to meet his new foster mum and dad Lucy and David. They took him home and got him settled in with them and introduced to their vets. Beau was overweight and so they put him on a diet and gave him limited exercise to help him get moving around a lot more easily than he was when they received him. He was also put on some additional pain killers of a different type to help with his movement problems.
When he was handed over to them it was very obvious that Beau had more than a back problem, one of his hind legs was quite thin and appeared to be out of line with the others. He also walked in an odd way throwing out one of his hind legs. So a full investigation was undertaken and further liquid scans were carried out by an orthopaedic specialist at a local veterinary hospital. The specialist there confirmed that the discs did have some problems but the main problem was his leg – Beau required cruciate ligament surgery, his leg was probably the partial cause of his back pain. The leg had been like this for some time perhaps years but no mention of this was made in the notes we were handed from the previous vets nor from the owner.
So Beau in readiness for his surgery was put on some extra pain killers in addition to what he was getting so that his muscles around his back and leg could be helped to get stronger with gentle exercise so that his body was more prepared for the operation. Beau had a check-up 4 weeks later at the hospital and he was doing very well – so well that because they had a cancellation they thought they would do the surgery that day! Much to the surprise of us all, not least his foster carers.
They were already well prepared for the operation and what it would mean – Beau would need crate rest for 6 weeks and not be allowed to jump up on the settee – his favourite place and only allowed very gentle lead walks around the garden. That was back in late September 2018 and he goes back to have further checks and x rays later on in October. So far he is doing very well, almost finished his pain killers and anti-inflammatory and the leg is getting stronger and he is walking much better. It will still take some time for him to build up the strength needed to get the leg back to working as normally as possible but we are planning to rehome him once we think he is strong enough to lead a more active life than he will have had for a long time. A proper dog’s life!
Dalmatian Welfare has foot the bill for all of his treatment and we are very grateful for the discount reduction on his treatment and drugs we have received from the vet practice looking after him. So far this has cost more than seven thousand pounds and there have been other supporting costs for his food and as well as mileage costs for vets visits. Our foster family have given up a lot of time and effort to help him and we are very grateful to David and Lucy.
So assuming he continues to make steady progress we hope to rehome him in the right home probably after Christmas 2018 to a family who can give him the home he needs for his health needs.