Helen came to ODH after landing in a shelter in pretty bad shape. Many rotten teeth, very thin, hair missing from the back half of her body plus most of her chest, legs and tail too. She looked like she had been suffering from a severe flea infestation for a very long time that sadly, had been left untreated. She also appeared to have been tied up with a collar that she had outgrown long ago because she had lost all the hair under the collar, probably from pulling or straining to get loose. She had terrible infections in both ears and was suffering from acute “cherry eye” caused by very dry eyes, again, that were left untreated. She was pretty much a wreck! She had a complete Vet exam, and a short time later, had fourteen of her teeth pulled. She must have felt better instantly! We also got going on treating her dry eyes and ear infections. Both took some time to clear up, but within a few weeks she was a much more comfortable dog. We also addressed her skin issues, with good meds, food and flea baths.
Helen was very nervous when she first came to her Final Refuge home, and stayed by herself for quite some time before she felt safe enough to venture out and get acquainted with the other dogs in her pack. She was pretty cautious around people, and it took her quite awhile to learn that the people here were going to treat her kindly, feed her extra well and give her a loving home she could relax and feel safe in. Soon she was running the length of the pastures with wild abandon, (at full speed!!) looking like she was having the time of her life! It made us smile to watch her. We think she was making up for all the years she was tied up and couldn’t run anywhere!
After seven months with her Final Refuge family, Helen began to have issues with anyone reaching out to pet her, and seemed very afraid if anyone moved towards her too quickly. She began to react differently to many of the regular things in her life, and many experiences she had accepted in the past, now seemed to make her edgy and uncomfortable. While we felt we had been able to help her physically, we knew that mentally she was beginning to show signs of dementia, and some of her behavior concerned us, so with much regret, we sent her on her way. Her ODH family will certainly miss her, but are so happy they could give her a loving end of life. She deserved that!
Rest in peace sweet Helen.