Cristy Coffman, Richard, Megan + Canines Joe & Abbey



Megan + Canines Abbey & Joe

A Story Of Love

"Daisy" (that was Abbie's name before!) spent 2 months at the Plano City Shelter. She had been surrendered because she had sarcoptic mange and the previous owner didn't want to pay to treat her. The previous owners said she was housebroken, liked kids and dogs, was about 1 year old, and a pit-bull mix. The shelter vet was treating her for her mange. Her condition deteriorated quickly.

She proceeded to lose ALL hair on her body. She first caught my eye on the Plano Website- mostly because it said she was a pit-bull mix, and by her picture, I thought she looked incredibly small, and kept wondering why they were calling her a pit-bull mix. I kept watching the website, also and noticed that she was STILL there for so long. Why? Finally, one day I went by the shelter just to talk to my friend Craig; the volunteers there. When I went there, I remembered this dog Daisy, and immediately started to look for her. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw her in her cage- she was standing by the door, shivering, looked like a hairless rat. She was oozing and bleeding and shivering, and looked more pitiful than anything I had ever seen. Also, her little brown eyes just pleading for help. I stood there and cried, thinking there was nothing I could do for her. The guy at the shelter admitted that he had actually cried over her too. She was such a sweet dog in such pain and misery. It was awful to see. He assured me that the shelter vet WAS treating her and she was on medication. She had been dipped and that although she looked so horrid, that she was in the process of a recovery from the mange that she had. I left that day, and couldn't stop thinking about her. I kept thinking about her all week. Richard and I went to the shelter the next Saturday with me to see her. She looked better.

She was no longer bleeding and oozing, but she was covered in scabs. A volunteer up at the shelter had just finished bathing Daisy- so she brought her out to us wrapped in a towel. The volunteer, Sandy, told me that she didn't think the name Daisy fit this girl, so she was calling her "Scabby Abbey". She said she had been coming in every day, and bathing Abbey, and putting stuff on her to help soften her skin, and break up the scabs, etc. I also talked to Craig and asked him if she was in danger of being put down. He said that No, the vet was still treating her, and she was actually in a good place there. She was being seen by a vet every day, and that Sandy was giving her daily baths in medicated shampoo. So, at that point, probably best to leave her there where she was getting so much attention. I was promised that they would call me if the shelter decided to put her to sleep.

The next day, Craig called me and told me that Abbey was coughing and had green stuff coming from her nose. That was her ticket to being euthanized of course. I begged and begged Richard to let me go pick her up. His point being valid, "WHAT in the world would we do with that dog?? I mean- NO hair, now very sick w/ green stuff coming from her nose- STINKY like you can not believe". But, he gave in. I kept telling him she was going to die, and he agreed that she didn't seem to deserve that.

I picked her up Monday morning and took her to a vet in Allen that I knew would help out (I think most vets would've taken one look at her and told me to have her put down). This vet, took one look at her and said "I have to keep her here". He proceeded to inject her with probably everything known to man.. He also scraped her because she had demodectic mange now. She weighed 19 pounds and was VERY thin and emaciated and she would no longer eat. He offered her canned chicken, she would have nothing to do with it. Her situation didn't look good at all.

A week later, I picked her up on Dec.14th. He sent me home with an armful of antibiotics, ivermec, and told me "Don't get too attached to this dog". I took her home, literally panicked because of not knowing WHAT to do. She smelled so bad, it literally burned your nose and made your eyes water. I got her home, bathed her in some shampoo he'd sent. That seemed to take away 90% of the smell, but, we discovered quickly, the smell came back fast too. None of the vet techs had given her a sweater, so now she wore a sweater most of the time. I was bathing her once or twice a day to keep the smell manageable. She wouldn't eat unless you fed her out of your hand, which I started doing. We were thankfully having some decent weather in December. When I went to work I would leave her outside. We fixed her up with dog house and a bunch of blankets in the dog house, pluss lots of water and tons of food.

Within a week, she was making noticeable improvement. She had started eating on her own and was eating about 6 cups of dry food a day. We were actually seeing hair coming up on her too. It was growing at a surprising rate. At the very first, Richard had suggested that we would need to take frequent pictures to reassure ourselves that she was getting better, but I swear every morning I could SEE more hair on her. The runny nose was the major issue for her, Really! It was NOT going away. I had to keep towels under her all the time. So much green goo was coming out of her nose; YUCK. About 3 weeks after I brought her home that just STOPPED. I mean suddenly stopped. It was there one minute and then no more runny nose.

By the 2nd week in January her body was mostly covered with hair. I took her back to the Vet to get a Bordatella vaccination. The Vet just about fell over. He couldn't believe it was the same dog. She now weighed 27 pounds. Mid January, this dog started to PLAY. It was like a miracle to see her pick up a toy, take it to Joe, and want to run around. Now, she has become ours. She has GROWN too. she is now 35 pounds.. Not fat- I really think at the shelter, she must've been more like only 6 or 7 months old . She has extreme energy. Sometimes too much even for my boxer! She and Joe are best of friends. He's sort of like a big brother to her. She loves him. She's definitely MY baby, too!!!

My hope is that you might see this and will realize: #1- What an awful situation that pet overpopulation really is, and #2- That a shelter is a great place to find a wonderful pet and companion (as opposed to buying from a breeder). Adopting from a shelter is saving a life!

If anyone would like to help, or perhaps adopt a shelter animal , please contact me or click on Pet Finder for a shelter in your area.