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  • Adopted Murdock in December 2006 when he was 10 Mos old. He has been the best boy ever! We just learned he has Lymphoma & are devasted. I can't imagine life without him & am hoping he responds well to treatment and lives many more months!!
  • Marie, PA
  • I lost my best friend, Evie, a year ago September. I adopted her in 2006, she was 2 years old. That sweet girl was the love of my life and I miss her dearly. Thank you MAESSR for bringing that beautiful dog into my life.
  • Carrie, VA

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    << Previous in Available Dogs Next in Available Dogs >>
    Entered: 06/12/2017
    Status: On Hold
    Age: 10
    Color: Liver/White
    Weight: 46.6 lbs.
    Gender: Altered Male
    Location: Fayetteville, WV
    Health: UTD, HW-, recovering well from left-side perineal hernia repair, continuing stool softener for digestive support and medication for low thyroid,
    Health Cont.: healthy weight attained, dental and treatment for struvites complete, treatment for ear infections complete
    Temperament: Overall ease when meeting adults, unknown with children, accepting of resident dogs, unknown with
    Temp. Cont.: cats

    Obi's Story . . .

    “Dear Santa,

    Obi here with something very special on my list this year.  What I want and need is a family who will share their home and life with me.  Being a good dog, I know I would grow to love them as much as they would love me ... "


    As part of MAESSR’s Home for the Holidays program, Obi’s adoption fee is being waived through December 31st.  This is a wonderful opportunity to open your heart to a dog that really needs you. Akin to the spirit of the season, such giving is selfless and enduring.


    Ask anyone who has welcomed a Senior or Special Needs dog.  One look into its eyes and you immediately realize how meaningful the gift of adoption can be to a grateful springer … and to you too!

    Update 11/07/2017:  “Summer seemed to last all through October and life was good for Obi.” 
    Obi’s surgery in September completed repair to his perineal area on the right side.  When the stitches came out and a recheck was done, the surgeon was pleased and gave him the nod to slowly resume normal doggie activity.  With pure delight, Obi traded his 6’ leash for a 25-footer and, in due season, began enjoying off-leash time in the field at home.  Summer seemed to last all through October and life was good for Obi. 
    To better insure continued stability in Obi’s “rear assembly,” MAESSR weighed seriously the surgeon’s recommendation that repair be done on his left side.  Weakness there had been consistently evident since his first exam in June.   So, once again, Obi is recovering from surgery.  He should be discharged from the hospital and back in his foster home tomorrow.  Yes, he’ll be wearing his inflatable collar and walking on a 6’ leash for a few weeks, but, good days will come again soon for this boy.  It’s truly hard to keep a good Springer down!!

    Update 09/23/2017:  Regular meals and basic vetting, paired with some advanced medical care over the last 3 months, have turned yet another Springer in need completely around.

    Obi is one tough gent.  He optimizes the amazing resiliency of his breed and its ability to recover from less than suitable circumstance.  Regular meals and basic vetting, paired with some advanced medical care over the last 3 months, have turned yet another Springer in need completely around.

    Few believe when meeting Obi that he’s a senior.  His overall health is quite good.  His only hurdle has centered on perineal hernias.  Surgery is the preferred treatment for this problem which can stubbornly recur, despite the best of care.  Thus, Obi sailed through his 3rd surgical repair last week.  His tail flutters again; he can vigorously shake his rear end and dance for his meals.  Though all are hoping this is Obi’s last surgery, it’s clear his quality of life and future are brightened by his opportunities for help.
    Between surgeries Obi traveled to MAESSR’s summer Splash.  Over mega-miles that day Obi’s OTR skills proved flawless.  At Lake Anna he mixed confidently with other 2- and 4-footed attendees.  He gingerly stepped into the warm lake, though only up to his chest.  The idea of actually swimming seemed new to him.  Without complete confidence in his recall in an unfenced situation, Obi remained on leash while most others enjoyed free run of the expansive yard.  He didn’t seem to mind this and quietly crated when asked, rounding out a successful step into his first social scene.  Good boy!!
    Stitches will come out this week along with a recheck of his surgical site.  Obi’s full of energy and offers a happy, expectant look to those he meets these days.  Barring surprises, he may be looking for his own forever home before long…

    Update 08/15/2017:  It’s really fun to watch him dash around the yard these days.

    While Obi’s overall health continues to improve, he’s experienced 2 setbacks.  For one, he’s revisiting ear infections.  They may be related to a low thyroid level that was recently detected.  A thyroid supplement has started and daily meds to treat his ears have begun.  With a bit of luck, this may be his last ear infection…ever? 
    Continuing on 3 moderate meals daily, Obi has gained almost 6 pounds.  The hollowness in his flanks has filled in.  He has a very nice waist now and tons more energy.  It’s really fun to watch him dash around the yard these days.  Further gains should be muscle now.  His body-wide flakiness is disappearing and he sailed through his dental, keeping all his now pearly whites. 
    The second setback for this lively senior centers on his tail end.  Each perineal hernia healed without complication after surgical correction but, as is sadly common with this health issue, recurrence of the original hernia has happened.  Fortunately, Obi’s not in pain; it just takes him a little longer outdoors to do his business.  His vet is working with MAESSR to determine what the next and best step will be for Obi. 
    Obi’s manners continue to improve too.  He sits politely for treats and, with the word “easy,” doesn’t snatch.  He does this for strangers now too.   His behavior at mealtime reflects growing trust that he doesn’t have to defend his kibble.  He has progressed from being hand-fed to eating out of his bowl while his foster mom holds it on her lap.  If the bowl is set down on the floor, he still “takes possession” and guards it.  But, when eating at knee-level, he will pause on request and wait for a few seconds without protest.  For a dog that must have been hungry for a very long time, these baby steps are celebrated!!
    Check back for continuing progress as Obi grows into his name…

    Update 07/17/2017:  One thing Obi doesn’t fully understand yet is that he will never go hungry again.”

    What a joy to see Obi’s progress since becoming a MAESSR boy.  He feels and looks so much better than when he arrived in foster care.  Desperately-needed vetting, regular meals, and a safe place to think of as home are all working to his betterment.
    Health-wise, Obi’s basic needs are almost complete.  He has a dental pending, a booster to go, and a few pounds to gain.  What wasn’t basic but was imperative to correct was a perineal hernia.  That surgery went very well.  A surprise, however, was that before the stitches from that procedure came out, a second hernia developed.  Ten days after the first repair Obi was in for a second major surgery.  Thankfully, he did really well again.  Unlike most dogs who sleep away the hours after anesthesia, Obi was alert and ready to move as soon as he woke up.  The only follow-up required to his hernia repairs is a daily stool softener taken as a treat.  That and small meals are important.  Obi doesn’t mind this regimen; his total daily intake is the same but he eats 3 times a day instead of 2 and enjoys small treats between meals…not so bad!

    One thing Obi doesn’t fully understand yet is that he will never go hungry again.  He still inhales his kibble; a brake bowl barely catches his notice.  To slow the pace, build trust and shape manners, he’s hand-fed 2 meals each day.  There’s progress with this small investment of time.  Obi eagerly, but without snatching, takes each handful…and then inhales it...J).  By contrast, when his meal is served in the brake bowl, he almost goes into panic mode and his foster mom knows she needs to step aside quickly.  The two will continue to work toward a short “sit” and a quick release at all meals but, for now, that‘s more than Obi can manage.

    A softening temperament has emerged now that Obi’s chronic discomfort and long-term hunger are behind him.  He notices and meets strangers with ease.  He enjoys longer walks and leaves home to check out the town park or woodland trails.  Like a good Springer, his nose is always to the ground but he keeps himself moving along, making him a delightful buddy for light exercise.
    Obi is living with 2 resident Springers.  He’ll sit alongside both of them, honoring them, to receive his treat when it’s his turn.  He and the senior resident, a master at sharing all, do well together.  They can loaf away a hot summer day on the porch without a peep.  By contrast, Obi and the younger resident both have a bit of tendency toward jealousy when it comes to their foster mom, so, unless she’s at hand, those two are gated apart.  Obi may be more drawn to people than dogs anyway, so an adopting home in which he could be the only dog with one human to provide belly rubs might be his preference.  Yes, this boy offers up his belly with surprising ease!

    Obi’s come a long way in a short time.  He has some pounds to gain and manners to shape but the hard part should be behind him now.  He’s almost ready for new pictures!  Check back for further progress by this tough little Springer.

      “Rounding out a very full visit with the vet was a rectal exam which led to the diagnosis of a perineal hernia.  This will require major surgery and is likely contributing to Obi’s unease as well.“

    Lucky is Obi to have landed with MAESSR.  When some very persistent MAESSR vols learned of his situation in a Virginia shelter, they worked diligently to pull him ASAP.  He had landed there as a stray and likely had little time left.  During his first 2 days with a short-term foster family, Obi got 2 baths, a shave-down, and pumpkin treats...yum!  The morning after he traveled to his long-term foster home, he met his vet for a thorough exam and started desperately needed veterinary care.

    With a nod from his vet, Obi is dining on small meals 4 times a day.  He’s severely underweight; a gain of 10-15 pounds is needed to cover his bony frame and put him into a healthy range for his size.  With a week in foster care, he still inhales a meal as if it may be the last.  Ointment for ear infections was provided by the shelter but Obi was quite resistant to the treatment, so the vet did an infusion in each ear.  The med in the infusion should eliminate the infection and is much more to Obi’s liking.  His ears are less inflamed and one can be touched; the other…hopefully soon. 

    Adding to Obi’s discomfort at intake was the extreme filth and matting of his coat.  Removing the coat allowed the vet to assess the skin underneath and made him feel much better.  Fortunately, there was no skin infection but it was very tender.  The vet recommended a short-term med to protect him while he begins to grow in new fur and that’s underway.  Obi’s required urinalysis was clear of infection but showed a heavy load of struvites, so he’s transitioning to a specific diet to rid them.

    Rounding out a very full visit with the vet was a rectal exam which led to the diagnosis of a perineal hernia.  This will require major surgery and is likely contributing to Obi’s unease as well.   Once he’s sufficiently stabilized and settled, that will be scheduled. 

    All in all, it’s been easy to understand Obi’s mixed emotions.  He has nuzzled his foster mom’s hand for attention at times.  He goes to his crate when asked and sees it as a safe haven.  He hasn’t barked yet but does have quite a grumble that lets anyone know when he’s uncomfortable or feels threatened.  He has accepted lots of very gentle brushing to lift away flakiness from his skin.  Obi’s definitely on a roll with what surely can only be better days ahead.  Another month should make a huge difference for him.  Check back for progress!