While hoping throughout the day yesterday that Sugar would rebound from her gastrointestinal issues, she seemed to begin getting worse again as the evening progressed yesterday and throughout the night she was needing to go outside every hour or more. You could tell she didn’t feel well and yet she continued to put 100% of her energy into taking care of her pups and wanting to be right by them at all times.
During the morning check-in with the breeding coordinator who was at the vet for another Can Do dog I explained the latest developments and she said she would consult with the vet and get back to me. Shortly thereafter she contacted me and said that she would be coming over again today for another possible round of IV fluids if Sugar needed it and that the Vet had prescribed a medication in addition to the one she was on to be a little more aggressive in treating her issues. When you are a breeding coordinator, you don’t necessarily get the same opportunity for “time off”! When there’s an issue, regardless of the time of day, she is always ready to help and make sure that we are getting the best care for these supermoms! I don’t know if I could volunteer as a whelping home without her expert guidance, her calming personality, and her love of the dogs in her care as well as her job!
Because Sugar is being filmed for what one day may be a documentary, the videographer was also called to let him know of the new situation so he could determine if he wanted to come over and get any footage of the latest medical development. He was able to rearrange his plans and be able to film the process of a home medical visit.
As we did on Thursday, we administered the required medications, watched her closely and let her rest to see if her body would sort itself out now that she had plenty of fluids to keep her from becoming dehydrated. It was amazing to see in a couple of hours how much the fluids really did help and that she started acting like herself again! She wasn’t restless and she didn’t need to constantly go out to go to the bathroom.
The puppies are voracious eaters, and they are trying to nurse as frequently as possible! I can only imagine Sugar trying to keep up with their appetites! She’s got 7 mouths to feed and they are always calling for her with their little, tiny voices!
I sometimes think that it would be difficult for those who aren’t in this position of being a whelping home volunteer to understand how worrisome it is for us to have a dog in our care that isn’t ours and watch it becoming sick or not feeling like themselves. We want so badly to be successful at this mission of providing assistance dogs to those who want and need it that it can almost become an obsession of sorts. (speaking for myself only!) There is a great amount of responsibility we place on our OWN shoulders to make sure that we “do this thing” RIGHT; that we give it everything we’ve got and leave nothing on the table because people’s freedom and independence are counting on it. We want to make sure that when these beautiful puppies leave our home for the next steps in their journey that we’ve given them everything possible so that their great start homes, their puppy raisers, and their fosters are able to teach them all the skills necessary to be rock stars in their respective fields whether that is diabetes alert, seizure assist, autism assist, mobility assist or hearing assist!!
These puppies are meant for something-for someone; they will change somebody’s life in a way that we can’t even comprehend at this moment. And the people who they will serve don’t even know that they exist at this moment! Their destinies started the day they were born. Regardless of whether they make it through the full vision of being placed as an assistance dog, whether they get career changed…….they still have big shoes to fill and this is the beginning of giving them what they need to realize that goal. As you can see, I don’t take this responsibility lightly!