May 2010: Marty outside enjoying the nice weather at his loving foster care home!
March 2010 Update: Charley continues to enjoy all the affection he receives from his adopted family. Because of the paralysis in his hind legs, Charley canâ€™t play as much as the other dogs. We are thankful he likes to spend most of his time lying around the house. From time to time Charley tries to play with the other two dogs in the house, Rocky and Oreo. The medication he receives daily prevents him from feeling any pain in his legs so heâ€™s able to move around as much as possible. Sometimes the dogs donâ€™t always get along, but our wonderful Charley makes the effort to be friends with everyone.
April 2010 Update: Our dear, sweet Charley is truly loved by his adopted family and continues to enjoy all the affection from his family and friends. Although playmate dogs Rocky and Oreo don’t always get along, Charley tries to fit in with them both. The medication he receives daily helps him cope with any pain he might be having in his legs as he moves around. He likes to spend a lot of time resting and relaxing at home.
February 2010 Update: Bonnieâ€™s health has been great and she hasnâ€™t had any seizures for a while. While she isnâ€™t the most social cat when it comes to other felines she likes it when people make a fuss over her. One of the Animal League volunteers often engages Bonnie with a laser pointer; Bonnie loves chasing it all over the cat room floor and up the walls! Bonnie continues to take her medication like a good girl and is being closely monitored. We have made great effort to keep her in a calm and stable environment to prevent any seizures.
March 2010 Update: Unfortunately, Bonnie has recently suffered two seizures. Animal League veterinarians are not sure what is setting off these seizures, but they will continue to closely monitor Bonnie. They have also advised to continue her on the same medication. Although she did suffer a small set back with the seizures, that didnâ€™t stop her from licking the volunteers who fuss all over her. She is most happy when the volunteers play with a laser pointer; Bonnie loves chasing it all over the cat room floor and up the walls. Because of your generosity, we can continue to care for and provide love to our dear Bonnie.
April 2010 Update: All the pets here at North Shore Animal League America experience their ups and downs and our special-needs pets are no exception. While Bonnie has been feeling good since being back here at the Animal League, there have been a few times when she has experienced a seizure. Our loving staff in the shelter makes sure to administer Bonnieâ€™s daily medication to help prevent these occurrences and this has helped greatly. The few times that a seizure has occurred, the staff comforted her with extra care. Thank you for your dedication and your support of Bonnie which helps to provide her with the daily medication she needs.
February 2010 Update: We are happy to report that Avida is doing well! Her foster mother told us that she very much enjoyed the holiday season. She likes the cold weather. She takes pleasure in curling up in front of the wood burning fireplace to warm herself. She has begun to show some signs of getting older and has become more tolerant of the other cats in the home. Overall her health is good, but she still relies on her inhalers to keep her breathing comfortable. She is certainly happy to be one of the lucky cats to be in a foster home!
March 2010 Update: Avidaâ€™s foster mother reports that she is doing well. She is on a combination of oral and inhaled prescriptions. Her skin coat has improved as well as her energy level. She still fights for the best place by the pillow. Sometimes she tolerates sharing it with her fellow housecats. They are all looking forward to spring and birds in the window! Because of your generosity, we can continue to care for and provide love to our dear Avida.
April 2010 Update: We are happy to report that Avida is doing well. She is still on a combination of oral and inhaled prescriptions. Her foster mother always comments to us that Avida is a very loving cat. She enjoys her life even though she is challenged by her medical condition. Often, she can be found purring and lounging in peace for hours. Thank you for enabling Avida and all of the pets in the Animal Leagueâ€™s Sponsor Program to live the best quality of life possible through your support.
Due to the medical condition that Sixpence is challenged with, it is difficult to take updated photos of him for you. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you and thank you for your continued support.
The Sponsor Team
North Shore Animal League America
February 2010 Update: Sixpence is doing well and thankfully, itâ€™s been a long time now that he has had any problems. According to his foster mother, he is getting very bossy, which is always a good sign. He barks for hugs, pats and just to get attention. He loves the fact that he is now allowed to have a few snacks a day. He has started a special diet food which will help his joints. Sometimes, his foster mother gives him some of it as a snack and 6P doesnâ€™t disappoint – he gobbles it down. He has also begun to have some vegetables with his dinner and seems to enjoy them. His mother lovingly steams the vegetables so that they are soft. He has not experienced any discomfort in the cold weather or even the snow. All in all, and with fingers crossed, heâ€™s happy, healthy, and on top of the world this year!
March 2010 Update: Sixpence and his family are doing well and anxiously awaiting the warmer weather. They will be so glad when the days are longer and they can spend more time looking out their beloved window. One morning they enjoyed watching outside as a cat walked very carefully on the top of their fence and then turned and walked down the top of their gate. The cat walked so slowly and so carefully it provided much amusement for Sixpence. They were certain the cat was avoiding the deep snow on the ground, but no, when the cat was ready he just hopped off and walked through the snow like it wasnâ€™t even there! The squirrels are still fun to watch. They feed them and the winter birds to attract them to their spot by window where Sixpence is often found gazing in delight.
April 2010 Update: Since his foster mother insists on his safety, Sixpence received a brand new playpen to sleep in. His old playpen was worn out with holes in the sides. Now, he has a lovely green playpen with elephants along the top rim. His foster mother worried a little about the new playpen because Sixpence gets easily stressed and she did not know if he would adjust to a new â€œbedâ€, but it turned out not to be a problem. He couldnâ€™t be happier and he even looks quite pleased with his nice new digs! Now that the weather is getting warmer and spring is just around the corner, Sixpence is very happy (and safer, too)!
Barbara, what made you decide to foster a special-needs Sponsor Program pet?
I have fostered many special-needs pets during my time at North Shore Animal League America. I think the rewards are great, and although special-needs pets are sometimes a little more difficult to manage, the feeling of fulfillment at the end of the day makes it all worthwhile. It seems as if the dogs and cats in greatest need of help know when help is being given and offer much in return.
How did you decide that Sixpence was the one for you?
Sixpence was born at the Animal League on June 5, 2000. He was not able to nurse normally because hind limb and forelimb deformities prevented him from positioning himself at his motherâ€™s side, and he could not compete for space with the other pups in the litter. He ate well from a bottle, though, and so he came to me as a foster infant. In a sense we chose each otherâ€¦he had a need, and I had the ability to help and room in my heart.
How long have you been fostering Sixpence?
I have been caring for Sixpence since that time, and I would not have it any other way. He was sent to an orthopedic specialist who said that it would probably be kind to euthanize him unless there was someone willing to assume his care, as there was nothing to be done to help him and he was not expected to live. Of course I said I would care for him. That was 9 years ago, and although he has had episodes of seizures which were unexpected – (but only under stress) â€“ we manage to keep him calm and healthy.
What positive changes in Sixpence have occurred during these years of foster care?
He is a lovely dog. He argues when he wants a treat, and seems to have a sense of humor â€“ he wrestles with my hand when we play, and tries to caper around to the best of his ability. He seems to enjoy the life we have given him â€“ he never has a cranky day.
Because of his disability, has Sixpence learned to do everyday activities in his own way?
EVERYTHING he does is in his own way. Without much use of his legs he manages to keep himself clean, which is amazing. He has essentially housebroken himself, waiting until I am home to carry him to his â€œwee-wee padâ€. Often he misses, but he does his best. He eats lying down, drinks sitting up. Whatever he wants to do I encourage him to do, unless it puts him at risk. He is, I think, fragile, since his limbs are so twistedâ€¦but he has never known any other way and seems content. Stress is our great enemy, and I try to ensure serenity.
What would you like to say to the Sponsor Program donors about their monthly support of this life-saving program?
There is no question that because of the incredible Sponsor Program donors and their generosity each month many dogs and cats which are â€œother-abledâ€ are being helped to live. The program literally gives them life. I thank them with all my heart and there is no way to repay their kindness. I have tried to express my gratitude through the website, but there are really no adequate words.
In three words or less, tell us how you feel when you think about Sixpence?
Heâ€™s my son.
Barbara, you often report in your monthly updates that you and Sixpence live a simple life.
Yes, thatâ€™s true. And we are a happy little crew.
In the eyes of the Animal League, and Iâ€™m sure all of Sixpenceâ€™s supporters, we think thereâ€™s nothing simple at all about it – your unending love and devotion to this deserving animal, the consistent, quality medical care you always provide without hesitation, and a intimate bond that appears will never be broken. Youâ€™ve shown us that this pure bliss only comes when you give of yourself to truly love an animal.
February 2010 Update: Sweet Katie has been feeling better. Her bronchitis is fully resolved and her asthma is under control. She continues to be the most gentle and loving cat that her foster mother has ever taken care of. Katie spends her days in the comfort of her foster care home with plenty of toys to keep her busy and naps by the sunlight or windowsill. We are so happy to be able to give her the best quality of life possible.
March 2010 Update: Unfortunately, Little Katie is still having small asthma attacks. She is on a medication called Prednisone which is administered by her foster mother every three days. The medication seems to be helping her. She will be seeing an Animal League veterinarian soon for more x-rays. Otherwise, Katie is doing fine and as always she remains very happy and very sweet. Weâ€™ll be sure to keep you posted on her progress.
April 2010 Update: Sadly, Katie is still having small asthma attacks. Test results from the Animal Leagueâ€™s on-site medical center confirm chronic bronchial asthma. Her foster mother is waiting for medication to arrive that the Animal League has placed a special order for. Katie will be on an inhalator and she is now on oral prednisone to help with her asthma attacks which is administered by her foster mother every 3 days. Otherwise, Katie is doing fine. Thank you for your support of Katie which helps to enable her to receive the medication and intensive care she needs.
April 2010 Update: We are happy to report that Marty is doing well and is definitely ready for the warmer weather. There were a few warm days recently and Marty took advantage of them by enjoying the outdoors and a taste of spring and all the wonderful smells that come with it. He likes any opportunity to take a walk around the neighborhood with his foster mother. He likes to â€œmeet and greetâ€ any passersby. Heâ€™s adept at walking on a leash and likes to show off his impressive behavior.
May 2010 Update: Martyâ€™s foster mother, Carolee, reports that he is doing fine. She is still working on his house breaking but is not always successful. Marty loves to chew on things just like any other Golden Retriever â€“ he requires a lot of chew toys! If you catch him chewing on something he’s not supposed to he will stop when you walk by him and he does take a correction rather well. He is a loving and playful dog, but does need a close eye on him at all times due to his neurological condition. Every Saturday Marty visits the Animal League. Everyone at the League loves him and gives him lots of attention! His foster mother told us that she feels blessed to have him, but longs for the day that Marty will find his forever home where he can be the King of His Castle.
Dear Valued Friend,
North Shore Animal League America regrets to inform you of the passing of our treasured feline friend, Stripe.
Stripe came to the Animal League when he was just a kitten. Tragically, he had been abandoned. Early on, we discovered that Stripe had a very serious heart murmur. It wasnâ€™t long before we realized that he was going to need constant care for the rest of his life. In 2002, Stripe joined the Animal Leagueâ€™s Sponsor Program.
Though Stripeâ€™s health was guarded, he still lived life to its fullest. He lived with his wonderful foster care family and even had a feline sibling, Missy, who is also in our Sponsor Program. Lounging on his favorite window sill and absorbing the warmth of love as well as the sun, was a usual day in Stripeâ€™s life. He spent his days surrounded by love and happiness. Stripe was a cherished member of a loving family.
We are truly grateful for the wonderful quality of Stripeâ€™s life. Every day was a precious giftâ€¦and he shared this gift with everyone he met.
Stripeâ€™s time with us wasnâ€™t long, but it was full and happy. We feel sadness for the loss of our life-long friend, but we take comfort in knowing that together, we gave him all the love we had in our hearts The Animal League is so grateful to all our Sponsors and to Stripeâ€™s foster family for giving him such an incredible life.
Stripe will be dearly missed.
The Sponsor Team
February 2010 Update: No news is often good news where the Animal Leagueâ€™s special-needs Sponsor Program pets are concerned. Missyâ€™s medical condition remains the same. Sun worshiper Missy is not a fan of the winter season. That means her hours spent in the sunlight are at their shortest. Her foster mother, Sabine, will often find her sitting in front of the computer modem that has little lights. Itâ€™s always amazing to us how the animals know where to find the absolute best places to nap!
March 2010 Update: Can you believe that Missy has been in our care since 2005? Thankfully, Missy is one of the luckier pets in the Sponsor Program. Her medical condition, although life-long, has not changed for the worse. Her foster mother vigilantly monitors her health and makes sure that all her needs, physical and emotional, are met. Her foster mother has been doing the same for another deserving cat in our program named Stripe, also in our care for five years. It is only with the help of generous monthly support from kindhearted Sponsor Program donors like you that this is made possible. Thank you for making a difference in the lives of all our special-needs pets.
April 2010 Update: Littermates Missy and Stripe appear to be getting along better with each other. Stripe does not dominate Missy as often as he used to. Missyâ€™s condition prohibits her from defending herself and Stripe sometimes takes advantage of that. He does not really hurt her, but Missy protests loudly by letting out a cry. Sheâ€™ll eventually settle down and go back to normal. Missy does not seem to hold a grudge. There is something new and adorable to report about them – they have been sleeping in the same cat bed together! Stripe is doing well on his medications. He has to be watched closely as he will sometimes spit them out. If you enjoy sponsoring Missy, please think about sponsoring Stripe this year. They are a wonderful pair and need your support.