Poor Hopps, a 3-4-month pit/lab-x puppy, came to us a couple weeks ago after he was found stray and had been presumably hit by a car. Unable to stand he still wagged his tail and licked our hands. We posted him on Facebook (we post all strays there and on Nextdoor.com to let people know their lost pet is waiting for them at the shelter – it’s amazing how effective these two tools are in helping us reunite animals with their families. If you haven’t liked our page yet, please do and help us widen our connection in our community.) in the hopes of finding his family to take on his care. When that didn’t happen we rolled up our sleeves and started the diagnostics to see what was wrong.
Hopps definitely had a broken femur and it looked like both his hips had fractures at the growth plate area. Fortunately no internal organs seemed damaged – he was able to pee and poop just fine! The good news is that he is just the sweetest pup and extremely friendly and apparently well socialized. Someone on our Facebook page posted this comment about Hopps, “Thank you for saving him. Just think, not that many years ago, this baby would have been euthanized immediately.” It’s true! Animal sheltering has changed a lot in the last 20 years!
Part of the change is that aggressive spay/neuter programs have cut the number of animals coming into shelters dramatically so we can take the time and money to do more for the ones that do come in. We’re lucky that there are caring, generous veterinarians out there willing to give us a discount in order to help stretch our dollars. In this case, Dr. Gurevitch of Veterinary Referral Surgical Service gave us a great deal on doing this pup’s surgery. Attitudes have changed a lot over the years and people are less accepting of euthanasia as an answer except in cases of extreme illness, injury, or aggression.
But you can only do so much with what’s in the budget and that’s why we are so fortunate to have the support of a non-profit, the Animal Shelter League of Rohnert Park, to fundraise on our behalf and cover the costs of extraordinary medical care. Facebook has been a game changer too – by posting Hopps picture and explaining his need for surgery we got enough donated in just 2 days to be able to cover that expense. Of course, there was a real need, and two big brown eyes to beg for help – that worked like magic!
Hopps will probably need another surgery since they only repaired the side with the break in the femur during the first surgery. And there will be follow-up x-rays to monitor his healing and lots of other expenses too. So if you’re not on Facebook and feel moved by his story, the ASL is still accepting donations to offset his costs. Checks can be mailed to ASL, 301 J. Rogers Lane, RP 94928 or credit card donations can be made online at www.animalshelterleaguerp.org. Hopps, and all the other broken animals that come through our door appreciate your support and generosity!
“Get Them Back Home” Campaign – Every lost pet should have a way to get back home. FREE pet ID tag and a back-up microchip are available to all residents of Rohnert Park and Cotati. No appointment necessary, just come by the shelter during our regular open hours: Wed. 1-6:30; Thurs.-Fri.-Sat. 1-5:30; Sun. 1-4:30.
Fix-it Clinics – Free spay and neuters for cats; and $60 dog surgeries (up to 80 lbs.) for low-income Rohnert Park and Cotati residents. Call 588-3531 for an appointment.
Mickey Zeldes is the supervisor at the Rohnert Park Animal Shelter. She can be contacted at email@example.com.