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October 2014

Great Dane receives hug from little girl

Alex - rescue dog

Meet Alex ‘The Miracle Dog’

Alex, a Weimaraner breed, weighed just 43 lbs when found wandering the streets of New Orleans, rescuers described him as severely malnourished, terrified and barely clinging to life.

Deanna Theis, the assistant director of the Southern Animal Foundation said, “He was still so nice and sweet and forgiving despite, obviously, the neglect he has suffered for some time.”

After seeing a picture of Alex on a local animal control center website, Theis knew that he would be put down unless someone saved him, so the Southern Animal Foundation took the dog in.

The severely emaciated dog was x-rayed and nothing but rocks and twigs were found in his stomach. The staff at the center attempted to restore Alex’ health, but unfortunately they overfed him because his stomach bloated out substantially.

Alex - rescue dog
The bloated stomach flipped required immediate surgery, fortunately for Alex he survived the operation and is now getting stronger. The Southern Animal Foundation plans to find Alex a proper home after he has made a full recovery.

Deanna Theis said to Fox 8, “How he is still alive at this point is pretty much a miracle. He was extremely close to death.’

It is unknown who abandoned him. Anyone with information on what might have happened to Alex is being urged to come forward.



Ben and Meg

Dogs Make you Healthier

A very ill man in the hospital made a complete turnaround after staff allowed his dog in. So how can our furry friends help us?
Some states in the US that allow patients to have their pets brought in to see them know that this can significantly help with their recovery. It makes people feel comforted, and it lowers blood pressure and cortisol, a stress-related hormone. This helps people to recover faster.

Some studies show that dogs can reduce blood pressure response to mental stress, and they can reduce mental health problems like depression. This is because they encourage physical contact, distract from negative thoughts or situations, and love us unconditionally.

They also make us responsible, which is another factor that helps depression – a sense of responsibility for another life means we feel more self-worth and respect.


Research done in 2008 found that reading aloud to dogs helped boost confidence in young children. In 2009, another study backed this up, finding that students who took part in a Sit Stay Read program in Chicago increased reading fluency by up to 20%.

Indeed, UK charity Pets As Therapy run their own Read2Dogs program, which sees them take dogs into schools. One reason it may work is that the dogs used for therapy are very placid, nonjudgmental and accepting, quietly listening to children and not reacting when they struggle with words.

Dogs have also been proven to help increase focus on learning, and they can also help autistic children to be more pro-social, develop their motor skills, and sleep better.


Studies done in 2008 found that when elderly people in long-term care homes were given animal-assisted therapy (AAT) with a dog, they were less lonely than those that did not have that companionship.

This could be due to the fact that dogs are quite accepting and placid creatures. Often we feel like we have some “other” connection with them that can transcend verbal communication, and it’s this that means they’re just as good for us as human companions.


This one is a no-brainer, but having a dog comes with responsibility and the most obvious of those is to cater for their physical needs by taking them for a walk. Scientific studies have proved that if you have a dog, you’re more likely to be more active.

According to a survey by pet healthcare experts Bob Martin, dog owners preferred walking the dog to going to the gym, and they spent around 8 hours a week taking their dog out.


Dogs blood transfusion saves Cat’s life

A Florida’s Key West cat named Buttercup has been saved after receiving blood from a dog as there were no other suitable donors.

In a rare procedure called a xenotransfusion, blood was transfused from the dog because it would have taken too long to get cat blood shipped in to save Buttercup.

The local news station, Keysnet, reported that Dr. Sean Perry from the Marathon Veterinary Hospital said, “It’s a situation where you can’t give type A blood to a type B blood cat because it’ll cause a severe immune reaction.

“It was actually safer to give the cat dog’s blood. It’s a practice that’s been used in the past but it’s not common.” he added.

Ernie Saunders, the cats owner brought his cat Buttercup to the vets after the cat became lethargic, where it was discovered that the cat was anaemic, with red blood cells count down to 7 percent.

“Cat’s blood is a little harder to come by and not as available as dog’s blood.” Perry said.

“We had greyhound blood packs that we get from a blood bank that has red blood cells separated from plasma, so we tried that, and Buttercup has since showed no signs of rejection.”

He joked that now with his newfound dog blood hopes this doesn’t lead to a further identity crisis.
Lazarus the dog who wouldn't die

The Dog Who Wouldn’t Die

This black shepherd mix at the Ozark City Animal Shelter in Alabama, USA has defied death!

After 1 week in the shelter no one adopted this dog, so the decision was made to have him put to sleep.

That evening the local vet arrived to perform the deed, ‘After euthanizing the dog’, he then verifies that the heartbeat has ceased.

Checking the dog, he heard a faint heartbeat, so he euthanized him again.

After rechecking and finding no heartbeat, the dog was signed off on the records that the shepherd mix was dead.

When staff arrived the next morning, they were shocked to see the dog looking at them. They even noticed that he had eaten his left over food from the day before.

Coming back from the dead, the staff decided to name him ‘Lazarus’ in reference to Jesus bringing Lazarus back from the dead.

Lazarus was both scared and wobbly from the euthanizing attempts but quickly recovered and was adopted by the head of the shelter.

The new owners said, “When one reads of a modern day miracle, you do not have to think about whether you should raise your hand to help. Who does not want to be a part of a miracle? Who does not want to lay hands of love on the survivor of all time?”
hope for paws pup

Hope For Paws rescue LA dog with pups

Hope For Paws team members Eldad Hagar and Lisa Chiarelli received a call about a homeless dog alongside a LA freeway.
The concerned citizen reported that the dog was hiding in a den, rarely caming out of hiding except late at night.

Mr Hagar and Ms Chiarelli arrived at the seen and after 10 minutes of searching in bushes, they located “Iris” and her puppies.

Rescuers quickly realized the dog was injured and had three young pups with her.

The non-profit organization called Hope For Paws had to first gain the trust of the scared dog in order coax her out of bushes along with her puppies.

Ms Chiarelli offered Iris with some food and said, ‘I want you to smell this, look good girl,’ and she then was able to put a collar around the dogs neck.

Iris’ left eye was badly damaged which Ms Chiarelli said was caused by blunt force trauma.

The pups were named Seth, Nathaniel, and Meg and a message then appears on the video saying, ‘Please share and help Iris, Seth, Nathaniel and Meg find their loving homes together.’

Mr Hagar says that times when the Hope For Paws team goes to the rescue location they are able to find the dog, but this doesn’t always happen.

He said, ‘The search for the dogs is a challenging part because they usually hide. Finding Iris was difficult, but it could have been dangerous. We didn’t know how she would react when we entered her den, and there is always a risk when going to these rough neighbourhoods in the middle of the night.’

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October 2014

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