Posted on Jul 24, 2014
In January 2008, we rescued over 200 dogs from a hoarder that were left for dead in a never-ending sea of cages. Many of them were either injured or sick. We had 24 puppies who had Parvo and upon examining the weakest one, the vet said that we should just put all of them to sleep as they would surely not make it. At The Gentle Barn, we don’t give up that easily so we took the pups home and put them through our Parvo treatment program, which consists of hydration, immunity boosting, and holding therapy. We give Sun Chlorella Algae Super Food to boost their immune system and make the body stronger. We give sub-Q fluids a few times a day to keep them hydrated. Most importantly, we hold them and do not let them isolate. Puppies who get Parvo typically do not have moms so they are already compromised. When you isolate them in cages at the vet, they are so depressed and sick that they don’t want to live. But, when we hold them and pour love into them, they have something and someone to live for and it increases their chances.
We were very concerned for the weakest, smallest one because she was so listless and sick that she could not even lift her head from the pillow. We needed a volunteer fast! Our son, Jesse, overheard and exclaimed, "Please can I do it?" It was a pretty hefty job for a 9-year old, but we didn’t want to thwart his enthusiasm. We explained to Jesse that the pup was very sick and might die. The only chance she had was if someone held her and gave her the love and the chance that she deserved, but it was a very rigorous job and a huge responsibility. Jesse insisted that he could do it.
So our son, Jesse, held this baby pup for three days straight. He woke up with her in the middle of the night to take her to out pee, he sat with her all day, and slept hugging her all night. He patiently held her while she ate and if she peed by mistake on his bed, he didn’t mind at all. Jesse’s huge heart and his determination amazed us!
Each day this baby girl who the vets were sure would not make it, got stronger. On the 4th day, she was eating on her own and playing. I think the nutritional supplements and the fluids played a big part, but I think Jesse saved her life! The pup went on to get adopted and have a wonderful life, and Jesse went on to heal and love many more animals at The Gentle Barn, always at the ready to serve and to save lives.
Written by Ellie Laks
Founder, The Gentle Barn