About a month a go I received a phone call about an 8 week old puppy (Chihuahua and Shitzu mix) that had some health issues and needed a place to go. Puppies are not the typical addition to the Manor family but it is something that we have talked about ever since Petunia passed away last February. Though we had passed on several other inquiries on puppies when I received the call about this little girl my inner bell knew right away that she was meant to be here.
A few days later Bret and I went to pick her up. Bret laughed when he saw her; “that’s not a dog… it’s a hampster”! She was so small…barely over 1 lb. We named her Sophia Rose in honor of our beloved Rosie.
Sophia Rose has some serious health issues. Some of her very important parts are not developed properly. The least of her issues is that she does not have a tail…just a nub. The more serious is that her vagina and anus are too close together and both are not fully developed. Her vagina is misplaced. She does not have a full vulva so when she poops bacteria and debris go right in to her vagina.
When we first brought her home she was having chronic diarrhea and the task of keeping her clean and infection free seemed overwhelming. Once we got her on a course of antibiotics though the situation improved a lot. Unfortunately, as her stool normalized in firmness, we quickly realized that she doesn’t have strong enough sphincter muscles to get her poops out alone. Honestly, there is nothing worse than a constipated puppy. She cries from the pain of trying to poop. The first week or so of figuring this out was heart breaking.
I have touched more poo in the last month than any normal person ever should in trying to help this poor girl take care of business. Over the last month we have found a system to keep things working as best as we can for her. She is on a stool softener (a lot of it), she eats liquified food and I use warm water and warm towels to help her get her first poo out in the morning. For the most part, with the exception of her first poo in the morning, things are going much more smoothly now. Our vet suspects there are issues with her colon not functioning properly that cause her stool to harden over night…making that first little piece of poo so very difficult for her.
Other than the issues I described she is a happy, rambunctious and very loving puppy. She will see a specialist on the 20th of this month in Louisville. Our vets do not believe she will have a quality life unless she has reconstructive surgery on her vulva and anus. I am still hopeful that as she grows the entire situation will improve a lot and perhaps surgery won’t be necessary. We will do whatever the experts recommend though. Regardless, she will require extra care and hygiene management her whole life. She is worth every moment of care though. She has brought so much joy to this house already.
The other Misfits have welcomed Sophia Rose warmly. She is incredibly rambunctious and they are incredibly tolerant…especially Buster. She brings a renewed energy to the house and has lifted all of our spirits.
Each time we bring a new Misfit home I am reminded how blessed I am to be able to live this life. Sophia Rose deserves the best and I am so blessed to be in a position to take care of her. When I took her in to the vet for first appointment the vet chuckled when he walked in the room and saw her…chuckling at me not her…I am not sure he quite gets me and my passion for working with dogs with challenges…”where do you find these dogs” he said…I responded…”I don’t…they find me.”
Wishing you peace and happiness from Misfit Manor,
Nancy & The Misfits