Adam and Sunny were literally rescued from an appointment with death. In September, their guardian agreed to relinquish approximately 60 dogs in her custody in order to avoid animal cruelty charges. When our team arrived on her Goochland County property to evaluate the condition of the dogs and determine which were most in need of the resources the Richmond SPCA could provide for veterinary and behavioral treatment and rehabilitation, we were told these particular dogs were excluded from consideration because they were “too old” for anyone to want them. Therefore, a veterinarian had been summoned to euthanize them at the end of the week.
When asked what medical conditions prompted the decision to euthanize these senior dogs, their advanced age was the only justification given. After much pleading to allow the Richmond SPCA to give these dogs a chance, the former owner finally relented. They showed many signs of the years spent neglected outdoors – fly strike on their ears, filthy coats, runny eyes, inflamed skin – and we knew there would be additional veterinary needs beyond what we were able to observe.
After many weeks in the loving, expert care of our veterinary services team, Adam and Sunny are ready to be adopted into a loving home, and it is imperative that this bonded pair remain together. We are counting on readers of our blog and our supporters who use other social media to share their story. Adam and Sunny will have some ongoing medical needs, and the individual or family who commits to care for them and give them the home they deserve will have access to low-cost veterinary services through our Clinic for Compassionate Care.
Adam is the elder of the pair. He is approximately 10-12 years old. When he first came into our care, he presented symptoms of severe periodontal disease, an inflamed eye, flaky skin and arthritis. Following a course of antibiotics, Adam had a dental cleaning. Our staff also performed radiographs to diagnose the cause of his distended third eyelid. He displays signs of Horner’s Syndrome, and there may have been some trauma to the left side of his face at some time in Adam’s past. Our veterinarians recommend follow up X-rays within 3-6 months of adoption, which his new family may have performed at our Clinic for Compassionate Care. An estimate for sedation and X-ray is available. He is being given join supplements to decrease the discomfort he experiences from arthritis, and it would be beneficial for his adopters to continue supplements.
Sunny is approximately 10 years old, and we believe he has spent much of his life in Adam’s company. Like all the dogs the Richmond SPCA takes into our care, we tested Sunny for heartworms, and his test was positive, but he was not immediately healthy enough to begin treatment. After several weeks under observation and treatment with antibiotics, Sunny successfully completed heartworm treatment at the beginning of October. His adopters will receive a supply of heartworm prevention and instructions to return for a heartworm checkup in April of 2014. Like Adam, Sunny had advanced dental decay and has had a dental cleaning. He has also been diagnosed with mild hip dysplasia and spondylosis of the spine for which a supplement is prescribed. If his adopters chose to use our Clinic for Compassionate Care for ongoing veterinary care, they will be able to purchase these supplements at reduced cost. Sunny also has a lipoma (fatty tumor), which our veterinarian decided not to remove as it is causing him no harm at his age.
If you believe, like we do, that advanced age has no bearing on adoptability, love and companionship, then please share their story. If you think you could be their perfect match, call our adoption desk at 804-521-1307 or come to get to know them in person.
Tabitha Frizzell Hanes is the director of advancement for the Richmond SPCA. To read the biographies of our regular bloggers, please click here. Before posting a comment, please review our comment guidelines. Please note that our comment policy requires a first and last name to be used as your screen name.