June 29, 2017
Meet Authur. He was an owner surrender, picked up on June 28. Although he was loved, the owner didn’t have any time for him or the ability to care for him. He spent all his days alone in a small outdoor pen. Years ago, we were told that he had a goat and other dogs to hang out with him but they had passed on.
We dubbed him "Arthur" because there is a certain air of nobility about him even when most of his body is covered in scabs and sores from mange and long-neglected yeast infection. He is a sight that makes one do a double-take, and he smells like a 100-year old cheese. I can only imagine how badly he must feel, but he is calm and his gaze is direct and he walks up to you unafraid, full of sweetness. Sweet is the word that is used again and again to describe him by all those who have met him since he came into our care, including the vets and the clinic staff alike.
ID Number: CS-D001
Breed: Husky mix
Age: 5 years
Good with other dogs: yes
Good with children: yes
Good with cats/small animals: no
Status: Not available. Medical hold.
Volunteers involved: Carole H. / Helen S.
Fosters: the porter family, the yamane family, the harada family
He spent the night at emergency vets’ office to make sure whatever mange he has was not contagious, and to get a medicated bath and a very thorough ear cleaning. When we picked him up today he still stunk to high heaven, but the mats had been washed out and the scabs and flakes were falling much less. He is to be bathed every 2 days with his medicated shampoo and will be on antibiotics and steroids and ear drops to control a number of different infections.
He is starting his first night with his new foster mom and dad, and 2 golden retrievers. His introduction to the 2 goldens were pretty uneventful. He was neither threatened nor nervous. He was not playful or ingratiating. He simply stood with them as equals. It is this combination of his quiet dignity and sweetness that makes it a privilege to know him.
Ready to check out from the Vet's. Tail wagging!
Waiting for treats from the Foster Dad with his foster siblings, Elsa and Noah. Yum!
He is eating well. He is underweight and his spine and hip bones are a bit sharp but otherwise, the vet was optimistic about his general health, and we hope to put some good muscle on him with daily walks. He walks a little gingerly. We were told that he likely has dysplasia and since he was never walked, he is probably very stiff. He is not neutered but he does not lift. He squats to pee, and he holds it for a long time. We were told that he peed around 6am while at the vet clinic, and he didn’t pee again until about 6pm even though he was presented with many opportunities to do so. He hasn’t pooped while with us yet, and we are hoping that he will do that tomorrow, and fall into a good rhythm.
For a dog who has never experienced everything that has happened to him in a whirlwind - multiple car rides, meeting tons of new people, the vet's office (people poking and prodding him, taking ear swabs, skin scrapes), a visit to the store - Calvin & Susie :-) for supplies, new foster family... he has taken it all in stride without any anxiety, silently and proudly. He is a treasure.
His blood test results should be in soon as well as his vaccination titers. We are keeping our fingers crossed for good results.
Although we were told that he had never been inside of anything before, he handled the car ride like he’s done it a hundred times. We draped the car seats in bed sheets, and wrapped him up in a towel because he really was so unbelievably smelly and scabby, shedding flakes all over. He looked out the window a bit, and then quickly settled down, lying down next to me. And quite unexpectedly, he gently lay his giant head on my lap as if we were old friends… I caught a big lump in my throat, and his stench that was giving me a bad headache didn’t seem so bad anymore.
June 30, 2017
Arthur is settling in nicely. He slept for the first time indoors with his Foster Uncle! Well… with the door opened to outside, since he still stinks quite a bit. He is totally comfortable with his golden foster siblings although he doesn't really engage in play with them and he doesn't know how to play with toys. He is eating well and seems very hungry. He needs to gain weight, but we want to do it slowly. He finally pooped! And given that his food, snacks, medication, etc. were all new to his system, we were so happy to see decent poop. Calvin & Susie customers know that all our staff are very interested in poop. It’s a window into the gut and we watch all our animals’ poop carefully. :-) So far so good.
It's pink, but we are not insecure!
As I took him for a little short walk today, I noticed that he has absolutely no marking tendencies, which is very unusual considering he is a 5-year old intact male. This, coupled with the fact that he has one undescended testicle makes me wonder if all his hormones are working properly... Hormone imbalance can cause all kinds of health problems including compromised immune activity. We will have to get this checked out when we go to the vet in a week for micro-chipping. We also need to schedule his neuter as soon as he is ready. We don’t want to overload him when his body is going through so much.
Because his chip appointment isn't until next week, we are being very careful to make sure he does not get loose. His foster home has 2 layers of fences and he is wearing 2 collars - one with my dog's tag with my phone number. We are using my Emma's harness to walk him because the underside of the harness is very soft flannel.
Hmm. Dude, you really smell!
July 2, 2017
Arthur had some good and some bad news the last couple of days. The good news is that he is cleared for Parvo and Distemper. So we are now just waiting for leptospirosis titer.
The bad news is that he has heartworms. Realistically, since he lived outside all his life in a fairly wet area of the island, with most of his fur missing with that ripe funky yeasty smell attracting all kinds of flies and mosquitoes, how can he not have heartworms? But we were hoping against the odds... Oh well, like everything else, we will work through it. So for the next 3-4 months, he will be confined to very, very limited activity - just walking around the yard to use the bathroom. We will be going for an X-ray soon to see the extent of his infection.
Woohoo! My first trip to Costco!
Sometimes car rides can be so boring...
After the bath, I brought him to Calvin & Susie Kapahulu store where he held court (haha - he is still very regal despite his funk and stink). He mostly stayed with me in the back stockroom while I tried to do some work. He dozed most of the time, but he came out to get some treats and met some customers who came in to shop.
Hey, this guy Henry is so funny looking! At least I'll be handsome when my fur grows back!
Then I brought him to my house for a bath. He really is still very stinky and still shedding flakes all over, so I thought a bath might calm his skin and wash off some of the flakes. While getting a bath, he was introduced to Henry, who will be one of his foster brothers from next week when he moves in with me. They sniffed each other through the fence. Neither barked or jumped around, but they seemed to like each other and Arthur even wimpered a little like he wanted to get closer. That was the first time I heard any sound coming from him.
I don't mind office work as long as there is air-conditioning.
I also finally figured out why Arthur limps much more at times and sometimes he walks ok. In the store, he was walking around without much problem. But when we left the store and walking to my car, I saw him limping quite badly. It was such a sudden change that I thought maybe he had a thorn or a pebble stuck in his foot so I checked. That’s when I saw that poor Arthur does not have any black pads on his feet - just pink really soft ones like new puppies. He was kept all his life in a concrete pen, and that may explain why his pads are all so worn or burned off, and his nails are filed down so short, and why his feet look so swollen. He must have been scratching on the hot concrete floor or something. Now his pads are so tender that he cannot walk on hot pavements or on gravel very well. How painful it must have been...
With all this going on… malnutrition, ear infection, yeast infection, heartworms and sore feet, he still does not complain or whine. He is calm, steady, and sweet.
So after getting the bad news, I picked up Arthur from his foster home, and we went for a car ride to Costco to pick up his prescription.
July 16, 2017
A lot has happened with Arthur since the last update. For one, he moved in with me on July 5th, and he will be at my house until his heartworm treatment is finished and he is neutered, which will be another 4 months or so. He is adjusting only too well and making himself quite at home, and has seamlessly transitioned from an ‘outside dog’ to an ‘inside dog’. He has never had any accidents in the house, he doesn’t chew or break anything. He is the perfect house-guest. And he slipped right into our family's napping schedule as well.
Henry: I miss you... Arthur: I miss you, too... Emma: HaHa! Busted!
We also took advantage of $10 microchip at Kalihi Pet Clinic. Dr Obara was great and all the ladies were so nice to Arthur. He is already very strong now, and he pulled his way around the waiting room wanting to meet every human and every animal there! And people in the waiting room were so nice and gave him pets, even though he still looks quite pitiful and smells!
So I found out that he is a social butterfly at heart. He’s very different than when we first got him. He meekly trailed us when we pulled him along the leash. Now, he is alert and so very curious. He sniffs everything and yes, he does lift and he does mark. He has blessed all the trees and bushes around our yard.
Patiently waiting for Dr Obara to check me out before microchip.
He especially gets along well with his young foster brother, Henry. In fact, I am worried about them being a bit too playful with each other. During the first month of his heartworm treatment, Arthur must be on reduced activity which means maybe he can walk around the block, but definitely not roughhousing with his 2-year old brother. This means I am constantly forced to be the party-pooper and separate them when they start to get a little too frisky.
Although he has a long way to go still, Arthur's skin is looking better and he hardly scratches anymore. He is done with 3 of his 5 medicines. Also, he started a raw diet last week. So great food plus the raw goat milk should protect and heal his gut and help his immune system while he goes through his treatment. Thank you, Primal Pet Foods, for sponsoring Arthur! He so needs it right now.
Meal time is our favorite time!
Yesterday, a couple of awesome ladies were so touched by Arthur's story that they baked these beautiful cookies for him. Lots of weekend shoppers at the Calvin & Susie Kapahulu store donated money for the Foundation and took home cookies (for humans only)! Although the cookies were in honor of Arthur, the money will be spent sponsoring spay/neuter around the community.
Thank you, Auntie Dale and Auntie Jill, for the cookies! I hope when my fur grows out, I will look as good as the cookie dog.
My foster family. They are all nice to me, but the grouchy old sis mostly ignores me. Hmmm... I wonder if she's still mad at me for trying to pee on her when we first met...
Brothers... always nap together.
July 31, 2017
Arthur's Heartworm treatment finally started in earnest last week. He went back to Dr Ho at VCA Pearl City on Friday and stayed overnight. And because he really now has to stay completely excitement-free for the next 2 months, we thought it best that he is moved to another foster home where there are no other dogs, and no chance of him playing. We thought it was best for him. Otherwise, he would have to be crated all day long.
There was way too much of this going on to risk him staying with his bro Henry. 😭
Everytime, I turned my head, Henry and Arthur were playing. It was Henry who used to initiate play, but now, Arthur was getting just as playful and sometimes they were breaking out into a full-out chase around the yard. It was so great to see Arthur happier and peppier, but at the same time, it was becoming worrisome.
Rough-housing like this...
Would leads to this!
And less and less of moments like this.
Not only was he getting more frisky, but he was also making good progress on his overall health as well. He still smells yeasty, but he no longer has any flakes on his body and his fur is filling in. His twice/week ear cleaning was definitely helping and his ears are pink and clean. Even Dr Ho commented on how good his ears looked. I credit his Primal raw diet and my old trusted Liquid Health ear cleaner. :-) He also gained 4 lbs!
Although his underside is still very bald...
His other fur is filling in slowly yet surely!
Even his chest is growing a little peach fuzz!
Hanging out with his family before leaving for VCA.
At VCA Pearl City. The staff is very nice to him and noted how much better he looked! His vet Dr Ho is especially sweet on Arthur.😉
He had to stay overnight for observation, and I picked him up the next morning and we drove straight to Kailua where he will be staying for the next 4 weeks. We are all missing him already...
Already a seasoned car rider, he's a perfect passenger as we drive from Pearl City to Kailua.
All settled in at the temporary foster home. Bored and a bit lonely perhaps... but that's just what the doctor ordered!
October 19, 2017
It has been almost 3 months since Arthur's last update. He has come a long way in those months. He finished his heartworm treatment, and finally got the OK to play without any restriction. He still gets tired easily but we are looking forward to building his endurance in the coming months. And after caring for him almost 4 months, he has become a part of this family, and we could not bear the thought of moving him to a different home. This is his home. This is his family. So last week, we officially adopted Arthur.
Arthur thanks everyone for all the support and well wishes he received in the last months. We will take good care of him. He is a treasure.
Arthur's old journey ended here.
Arthur's new journey will always be with his family. He will never be alone.