New to the havanese breed with special needs pup - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 09:39 AM Thread Starter
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New to the havanese breed with special needs pup

Hi everyone,

I am new to the Havanese breed. I have a special needs pup named "Jack" that is 7 weeks old. I know from reading some of the forum threads that all of you are about the betterment of the breed. Jack has an issue that LSU has diagnosed as hyper-extension of the femorotibial and tarsocrural joints biliterally of his rear legs with appropriate bone development for his age. I am not a breeder. I have not intention of being a breeder. Jack caught my heart with his indominable spirit for survival. The breeder was going to have him put to sleep as soon as she saw his disability; however, the other women that work for her talked her out of it.

I saw Jack when he was 5 weeks old and being weaned. I was there to set up a network, and I saw Jack in his pen which was very clean and well kept. Because of his back legs when he was fed he was inhaling much of the liquid up his nose and his breathing was very raspy. Jack was reunited with his littermates and mother in the evening and the littermates were approximately 4 times his size and ran all over him. I fell in love with Jack the minute I saw him and knew immediately I had to take him home with me. He needed some one-on-one TLC.

He is now 1.8lbs and twice the size he was when I got him. Jack gets around really well even with his back legs; he kind of waddles when he walks and hops when he is running. All of Jack's body functions are normal and he doesn't soil himself nor is he in any pain at all. Early in the week we went to the vet because I wanted to get him checked out and get a diagnoses on his back leg problem. He had a slight upper respiratory congestion and ear infection so I got medicine for that and then they x-rayed him and sent the images to LSU for diagnosis which the results I mentioned earlier. We are going to make an appointment with the LSU orthopedic specialist in May when my classes are over and Jack is a little older for further diagnosis.

I had to take him back to the vet again because he was vomiting and had diarreah which turned out to be coccida. The vet which is a friend of mine called me before they diagnosed the coccida and suggested that I might consider putting Jack to sleep because he would not be able to lead a full life. The very thought of it made me sick. If he were in pain or soiling himself, I wouldn't have thought twice about it; however, since he isn't and he is a happy, playful normal pup I can't do it.

I hope that all of you will be understanding and please do not blame the breeder like the vet tried too. This was my decision and I am a responsible dog owner or the breeder would not have given him to me. I love this pup and he loves his Moma. Jack is a joyful blessing. I don't know anything about the Havanese breed and I have a lot of questions because it seems that they are a little different and have some unique qualities.

I know that this is probably a little too much information, but I need to know that I have some support with this baby from somewhere.
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post #2 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 09:56 AM
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I agree if a dog is not in pain and can lead a full life (not just lay in a crate) there is no reason to put it down.

We would love to see pictures of your new baby!

I see your from Ruston, I am not too far away in Tyler, TX. I am going to be at a dog show in Bossier on April 23rd. There are 6 Havanese showing and I will be taking my dog Sugarbaby with me. If you can make it, we would love to meet you.
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post #3 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 10:46 AM
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Welcome and we like to see pics lol!

I think it's a great thing you are doing by taking Jack. I agree if he is in no pain and can live a happy life with his disability then why put him down? I guess you will know more about his condition in May. Keep us posted and let us know how YOU and he are doing! They are a very unique breed and very easy to fall in love with!
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post #4 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 10:50 AM
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Welcome Susan. What a great thing you are taking on. You are a true hero. Was he socialized enough so far.?

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post #5 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 11:49 AM
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Jack is certainly a lucky little guy to have such a caring Moma I'd love to see pictures.

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post #6 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 11:54 AM
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Welcome, Susan! I agree with you completely and hope you don't have to make some hard decisions down the line. But, it sounds like he is doing well so far.

I am also getting a puppy on Friday who was "special needs". You can see the story of McGee if you do a search for the thread "We need your help......."

I hope things continue to go well for your little guy and we are here for you. I will add that we need pictures!!!

Kathie, Abby & McGee's Mom
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post #7 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 12:40 PM
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Years ago I rescued a dog who turned out to be pregnant. The vet said no, my neighbors said she was, and my neighbors turned out to be right. Up to that point, I'd always had male dogs so I had no clue. To make a long story short, I kept the mother (Jaime) and a few of the puppies, finding homes for the rest.

When I moved to my current home, one day I found my big boy (Christopher) dragging his rear legs. He always ran the perimeter of the property, and I heard later that the kids or their friends of a neighbor around the corner had thrown a brick at him, injuring his spinal cord. After taking him to Manhattan to a specialist, I was told he'd never walk again and they suggested I put him down. Prior to that, when he stood up, his paws were on my six foot tall son's shoulders.

I should tell you there was something special about this guy from the moment I first saw him. I swore I could look in his eyes and see God. I cried my eyes out, moved my whole world to the kitchen near the back door and lived on a sofa bed with him by my side for the next six months.

He had no sphincter control and dragged his hind legs as he joyfully still ran the perimeter of the yard, always with me out there watching him. He ate well and loved well, never showing any pain. We lived like this, with my house constantly smelling, much as I tried to keep on top of it all the time. I bought area rugs and replaced them every few months.

I got to love him for three and a half years after that and the day he died, I cried my eyes out. Would I do it again? I know I would. I miss him to this day.

Your little guy has a lucky start. I pray that his luck stays with you both.

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post #8 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 12:53 PM Thread Starter
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thank you all for your words of encouragement. I will post picture and a short video of Jack. He is Mister Personality. He finds the potty pads, and we do have a few accidents, but that is any 7 week-old pup. He may need a wheel chair, but my husband and I are both willing to do that for him.

I don't have any really good pics of him, but I just took him outside to see if I could get one. I just have to load it to see what it looks like. I will post it as soon as I can.

Thanks again!
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post #9 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
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I'm not sure what you mean by socialized?
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post #10 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 03:37 PM
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You are a brilliant person taking on this little sweet heart,may you have many happy years together.

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