If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. Mark Twain

Saturday, April 9, 2011

I Want My Mommy

My name is Little Princess. I heard my rescuers calling me that when they were cuddling me and kissing my tiny head, despite being flea infested! I’m all of 2 months old.

A song for the street animals - click here.

My mommy gave birth to us in a filthy worksite amidst glass and metal shards. There were six of us. I heard the rescuers saying that it is impossible to catch my mommy for sterilization because despite feeding my mommy for years, she won’t even go near them and they feel sorry for my mommy who has given birth to so many litters before us.

Scavenging for food
The six of us spend our days sleeping under the containers in the worksite and scavenging for food. My mommy is a good mommy; despite not always having enough food for herself, she nurses us and gives us what little milk she has. Many times we were almost hurt when the humans were working and driving big noisy vehicles around, so we have learnt to hide under containers and wait till they stop work. We only come out when it’s quiet and cooler.

Our home under the container

Workers helping to catch my brothers and sisters

During the day, it’s sometimes so hot that our mouth and throats are parched. And when it rains, we huddle together; freezing in the cold and wet from the storm. There have been days that we have been so hungry, as soon as the rain stops, we run out to lap up the mud to fill out little tummies. After lapping it up, our tummies feel so heavy and swollen from the mud, but that keeps us going.

Like little puppies, we play rough and tumble in the mud and amidst rubbish, without a care in the world, without the faintest idea how bleak our futures are, or if we even have one. Many of us stray puppies don’t live past the age of 4 or 5 months because that’s when we grow a little bigger, braver and we start to wander out of our “homes”, out of our comfort zone and onto the streets in search of food. We get flattened by vehicles driven by people who are quite happy to get rid of us so that there are lesser strays. They call us a nuisance.

Mommy and my 5 siblings while I was hiding away in pain

That's me hiding underneath. I was afraid people would hurt me more.

My siblings often play catch and we chase each other round our compound. They can climb the steps real fast as they are bigger and stronger. It took me many days to finally master the steps and I was real proud of myself when I made it to the top of one flight of steps. I am the smallest of the lot and my siblings often bully me. They growl and attack me when I try to share their food. I know it’s not their fault, they don’t mean to be selfish to me. We sometimes go on for days without food or water. 
Mommy always says not to play with our food!

One day while playing, two of my siblings ran up the flight of steps and I chased after them, wanting to be a part of their game. I finally caught up with them at the top of the steps but I didn’t know that it was an unfinished flight of steps. Before I realized, it was too late and I fell off the flight of steps. I landed on my right side and I cried and cried but no one came to help me. My head hurt. My body ached and my legs hurt. My mommy came to lick me but she didn’t know what to do. It was so painful. My right eye was bleeding and I hit my head and I had broken some toes in my front paw. I lay on the ground for what felt like eternity. I must have fallen asleep or suffered a concussion. When I awoke, it was in the early hours of the morning and I felt a man lift my limp body and carry me to the side of the compound so that come daylight, I would not be in the way of their work.

In the morning I tried to walk but I couldn’t even stand. Each move sent painful shockwaves through my tiny frame. I dragged myself to hide under the containers, so my siblings would not pick on me. The lesser I moved, the better it was. I hid there for 2 days before a kind worker pushed a packet of left over Indian rice under the container for me to eat. I ate it all up even though it was really sour and foul smelling. I know he meant well and I was really hungry.
Me with my broken paw (right)

Then I heard two new voices coming closer, asking the workers if they want food to feed the dogs. Food?? Did they say food? I lay still under the container, not wanting to feel more pain, yet straining my ears to listen if they did indeed bring food. I heard a worker tell the ladies, “many baby dog have. One broken leg. Accident 3 days”. I felt a sense of hope; God had sent my guardian angels. The ladies asked where I was and the workers came to where I was hiding and slowly pulled me out. I screamed and yelped in fear and pain but they just took me out. They helped me to stand and opened some dog canned food for me. It was paradise. I never smelled real fresh food in my entire life. Balancing on my three good legs, I wolfed down the food in seconds. The ladies had a discussion about the vet being closed and that they would come back for me the next day. They gave me another can of dog food and waited while I finished Round Two, then they lifted me up and pushed me back under the container, to rest, away from the dangers of machines and vehicles.

The next day, the same ladies came in the evening with 3 pet carriers and told the workers to help them gather all six of us. They said that there was no way they would take only me and leave my siblings behind; that it wasn’t fair. I felt so proud of myself. Did you know I sacrificed myself and my pain so that they would come and take my siblings and I away from this place? I was the little heroine. Maybe now my siblings will like me more and stop picking on me.

Soon all six of us were in the carriers and me being the smallest, cried the loudest to be let out! I was scared. I didn’t know where they were taking me to. I have never been in such a small space. They seemed kind and genuine but strays don’t always trust humans, it’s just in us to be cautious.

The ladies tried calling my mommy and luring her with food but she stood and watched from a distance, while all of us sat in the carriers waiting. She refused to come near. She was sad. She was worried that we were taken away from her, yet her instinct was to protect herself too. The vet was closing and the ladies had to leave. They left my mommy behind . . . . .

We threw up our Indian rice in the van and we salivated throughout the journey. Not a very polite way to repay human kindness.
Sorry I threw up my Indian rice :(

At the vet, all of us had our weights taken, microchipped, vaccinated and Frontlined because they could see the fleas playing hop scotch on us.
All of us were microchipped and we were all very brave about it

Blood tests for all of us and look at the fleas on our necks and body!

Dr Lesley Teo said she would see me last because she needed to do an x-ray on my leg and check my bloodshot eye. I was taken to the x-ray room and the results showed I had 3 broken “fingers” on my front right paw. My eyes had stopped bleeding but it was still bloodshot. She said she could give me eye drops for my eye and bandaged my entire front leg. Dr Teo said I was a really sweet girl because I was the only silly one that wagged my tail non-stop throughout the vet visit. I was just so happy to be saved. Dr Teo said I needed “bed rest” for a month and to visit her every week to have my bandage changed. The ladies needed to feel my tiny toes every day to ensure there was circulation and that my toes were still warm. I was young so my bones would fuse back together in no time at all. I didn’t need a surgery!

Getting the X-ray done

The broken bones in my paw

They said they would put my five siblings in the kennels and because we were all so small, all five would fit into one kennel. Save money, they said. I was kept in a super large carrier with nowhere to go because they said the kennel floors would be wet and dirty and I had to keep my bandage clean and dry. Fortunately they found a friend who would take me for a few weeks until my bones fused together.

The ladies also ordered blood tests for all six of us because having been flea infested, all of us had terribly pale gums. They wanted to ensure we were healthy and well. Fleas sucked our blood. Again, I am always the special little Princess, I was anemic when no one else was. Oh, and my older brother has a pretty bad hernia that needs to be operated on when he is older.
Getting my broken paw bandaged up - I was such an angel!

 Do you think my arm is as heavy as my entire body?

Puppy with a hernia

I have not seen my siblings for a few days because I am in a foster home while they are all five together in a kennel.

Would you please take one of us home? If you take us home, we will make room for the ladies to be able to rescue and help more dogs. For every happy ending, there are thousands of tragic endings of death and disposal of strays. 
All set with nowhere to go
We are now available for fostering / adoption. I can’t wait to walk and run again. My bandage is really uncomfortable. I want toys. I miss my mommy. I want my mommy.

Life has been RUFF!

To adopt or foster any one of the puppies, please email Fiona at dogs_ink@singnet.com.sg

Adoption drive for these 6 puppies is on April 16 (Sat) from 3pm to 5pm at Pasir Ris. Pls email us for more details. The pups are not HDB approved.

Written by Fiona

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"He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion."- Unknown