After months of recovery Juan is expected to survive. This dear little Chihuahua was rescued by Hearts United for Animals from one of the most filthy, horrific puppy mills in Nebraska. He had a sore on his side and his ribs were misshapen. Initially the veterinarian thought that Juan had caught his side on wires or sustained the injury from dog fights at the puppy mill. He has been on multiple types of antibiotics, but nothing was helping, the infection was becoming worse. This week Juan made a trip to the Iowa State Veterinary Hospital where it was found that his infection was from a contaminated microchip that the breeder inserted. It migrated and the infection spread throughout his body as the chip moved. The surgeons at Iowa State performed deep tissue surgery, removing a large amount of infected flesh. Juan stayed in intensive care there for several days. He has just been released and is staying with Erica, an adopter of HUA dogs and employee of the veterinary hospital. In addition to Juan’s infection it was also found that he had three broken ribs from a blunt trauma injury he sustained at the puppy mill, veterinarians said either from being kicked or hit with an object. His ribs healed poorly and calcified making them twice the size that they should be. There is no way to fix it, it will be a permanent condition. His lung x-rays showed bright spots that veterinarians felt was from inhaling a chemical reacting agent at the puppy mill. That will also remain a permanent condition caused by neglect at the puppy mill.
Despite all of Juan’s issues he is one of the brightest, happiest, most adorable fellows we have ever met. He knows he is being helped and appreciates the support of the caregivers and volunteers at HUA and Iowa State. His caregivers describe him as sweet, innocent, and undemanding. He adores attention from the people. A soft stroke, a hug and a kiss mean so much to him. He has an amazing spirit to have endured all he did for so many years and still be so forgiving of humans. Although his body is damaged and broken, his heart is telling him that life is just beginning, and he is so happy about that. The smallest things mean so much to him; a soft bed to sleep in after years living in harsh conditions on filthy wire cage bottoms, good food and clean water, and most of all people who care deeply about him and express love and concern. He is finally able to rest peacefully and comfortably. Reports from Erica on Juan’s first night at her home where he is staying for several days to finish his recovery were that he was sleeping comfortably next to her on the couch, enjoying watching his first movie, while having comfort and care. He was smiling with relief to have his burdens lifted and soul soothed. Juan will soon be back at HUA, where he will be available for adoption. Our wish for Juan is to find a wonderful home with a family who will spend every day adoring him, caring for him and helping him make up for all of his lost, desperate years at the puppy mill. If you are interested in learning more about Juan please write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Contributions for his surgery and care can be made online at www.hua.org.
Juan’s story has struck us to the core and shattered our hearts. His fight to survive steels our resolve to help continue the fight against puppy mills and the pet stores who peddle the puppies of the sick, forlorn, abused and neglected parent dogs who are prisoners of their greed. Mountains of evidence have been presented to the county attorney and Nebraska Department of Agriculture, and yet nothing is done to shut down this house of torture. The abuse has been ongoing for years. The puppy mill is listed on the Horrible Hundred by HSUS, as well as a top offender by the Animal Legal Defense Fund. Nebraska’s answer has been to strike deals with the puppy miller, downsizing her from 400 dogs to 300, then 200, and now hoping that she can care for less than 100. HUA’s stance is that if she had only one dog she would likely not care for it properly. She has proven over and over again that the business of selling the offspring is all she cares about. The dogs should be seized and she should be shut down for good. For residents of Nebraska, voting counts. Knowing the candidates stance on puppy mills and if they will continue the same old dirty, devious ways of protecting the breeders and their buddies in appointed offices, or if they will have the integrity to do what is right by the dogs is particularly meaningful right now as November approaches. HUA and other animal welfare agencies cannot endorse candidates, but we can and do encourage you to conduct research before casting your votes. Please think of Juan and encourage your friends never to buy puppies from pet stores, and to help fight the legal and moral issues surrounding the plight of thousands of suffering dogs. Juan is just one dog, but he is one mighty little fellow who has a powerful story to tell regarding greed and corruption in this state. Collectively animal loving voters in this state are a huge voice, one that can effect change for the animals. Please help be a voice for Juan.