Stories from the Dog Rescue Railroad.

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Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
I am the author of Every Rescued Dog Has a Tale and a volunteer with many dog transport groups on the internet. ALL profits from the sale of the book have gone to dog rescue groups and rural animal shelters. Follow me on

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


I received an email this morning from the Dalmatian Rescue that saved Turk from dying on the end of a chain in Kentucky. He may not have a lot of time left on this earth but it will be spent surrounded by love and warmth. These are the words of Jenny Brock from the rescue...

" Thank you to everyone who has sent e-mails offering their thoughts, prayers and donations for Turk. As you know, Tammi with Dogs Deserve Better sent out a plea to help Turk (a senior Dalmatian) and Daisy (a 6 year old Rottie) who were both living a life chained up and out in the frigid cold. I am happy to say that Second Chances Dalmatian Rescue was able to take in Turk and with the help of our volunteers, we picked up Turk on Friday, January 16th.

Because Turk has touched so many people, I wanted to send this update so people know what his future will be. Please feel free to post this to others who may be interested in his condition.

Here is the latest update on Turk as of 1/20/09:
Turk received a complete exam, bloodwork and a nice hot bath once he got to our vet in Columbus, OH on Friday. Immediately we noticed that his urine was dilute and had an offensive odor, the vet suspected that Turk was in Renal Failure. The bloodwork came back and it does appear that he is in the beginning stages of kidney failure. Additionally, his red blood cell count is also low, that combined with other blood work results indicate the potential of cancer somewhere in his body.
There is also an indication that he has chronic inflammation (not associated with the arthritis) however, we do not know what is causing it. Without doing a full body ultrasound there is no way to confirm the cancer. Unfortunately, we don't have the funds to do this so we are going to watch his behavior, appetite and monitor any changes. He does not have full control of his legs due to the arthritis, he does not lay down easily due to the pain and needs help getting back up. He is now being started on KD diet (for the kidneys) and pain medicine, which he will have to be on for the rest of his life. He was loaded with worms, thankfully was heartworm negative and is now on antibiotics due to the infection from the sores on his back. He has a grade 3 heart murmur. According to the vet paperwork that came with him, he is actually 13 years old, not 11!! The most amazing part is that Turk still has that spark left! He nuzzles with you, he craves attention and enjoyed some cheeseburgers on his ride to freedom!

So, he is still at the vet because we are trying to see if we can get his urine regulated once he is on a set schedule and we are also monitoring him with the pain medication to make sure we get the right dosage for him to start to feel better. Without the pain meds, his quality of life is poor. With them, we hope we can at least get him comfortable and improve the quality of life even though it will increase the chance of hastening the loss of kidney function.

Due to his legs not working well, and always being an outside dog, he pees whenever and where ever without the ability to hike his leg so his back legs are stained from the urine and he will walk as he pees creating a nice zig zag pattern to clean up! Also because he is in the early stages of renal failure and the kidney cells are sloughing into the bladder, the smell is pretty off-putting. As long as we are able to provide him comfort and quality of life, he will remain in our rescue program. Right now, he is not adoptable and he also isn't going to be able to go to any of our foster homes.

So, the plan is that I will take him here in Dallas, Tx. I work from home, I have a set up that might work for him (and I have my own 14 year old Dal going through some of the same issues, just not as severe) and the weather here in Dallas is much nicer so he would be able to be outside if he wanted to and it wouldn't be so cold. Right now, we think this is his only option. We are going to transport him Friday, our intake coordinator, Penny and myself will meet halfway between Ohio and Texas. But, only if we can get him comfortable on the pain meds. This is a 16 hour trip and we fear that the stress of the trip will be hard on him if he isn't comfortable.

Turk is a reminder of why we do rescue. He may not be young, well adjusted and adoptable but, HE is why we rescue. To give him a chance that he wouldn't have otherwise had. Yes, he will be with us until he crosses to the bridge and we will incur significant ongoing medical costs but, HE is what rescue is all about. Even if he only knows the warmth of a bed and the gentle touch of a loving hand for a few weeks (or whatever time he has left), we will know that we changed his life for the better.

Thank you to everyone who has offered to help and who has kept Turk in your thoughts. Please check out our website for updates on Turk and if you wish to make a donation (we are a tax exempt, 501 c 3 organization)
I am attaching a few pictures of Turk taken the day he came into rescue and started his new and improved life! Thank you to all who helped make this possible! "

Jenny Brock, Director/FounderSecond Chances Dalmatian Rescue

I realize that hardly ANYONE has extra money to send to help a dog rescue, but if you are one of the lucky ones, I hope you will consider sending a donation to this wonderful group of people who went above and beyond to get this dog to safety. No matter how long he has, he will know love all the rest of his days.

NOW let's make sure that Daisy the rottie gets to a rescue.....I will keep you updated on her progress.

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