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Discussion Starter #1
Would I love to get my hands on the breeder that turned him in to be put to sleep! Grrrrr. I would love to know who it is too, so everyone can know who to stay away from.

http://www.petfinder.com/petnote/displaypet.cgi?petid=11561388





Quote:“Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” Like Gump, my name is Forest too and I come with a long tale to tell and a long journey to travel. This is my story of special needs. I am 10 weeks old and came to the shelter after the breeder brought me to the vet to be killed. I wasn't of any use to him. Perhaps a victim of poor breeding or a bacterial infection, the vet examined me and knew my problem could be corrected. I've got this problem with my legs and I can't walk very well.

PLEASE CHECK OUT MY VIDEO and you'll see what I mean. My muscles are very weak and my knees don't bend well. I've been to a few vets and a therapist and they all say I have a very good chance of healing because I am so young. I'm having a special brace made for me soon (that's going to cost the shelter about $700) It will help stiffen my legs and give me some support. Then I'll need ongoing therapy treatment for about 8 months, maybe less. Someone will need to bend my legs 4 times a day with the comfort of a moist warm compress applied. I yelp when this is done because it hurts me. But I know it is what is best for me to make me better. I also need to go to a therapy-for-pets facility in Shelton, CT, for now, once per week, but, less frequently as time goes by. This is so my mobility can be measured and I can take advantage of the pool therapy there. That will cost about $85 per visit. I also need massages on my hind hip area and muscles. I like this part the best. It feels great.

You can see the Shelter Manager, Laurie doing that for me in one of the photos. She really cares about me very much and takes me home from the shelter with her every day. She and the shelter folks are hoping to find someone just as committed to provide my treatments so I can grown up to be a handsome and normal guy. I can't wait for the day when I can "run, Forest, run". Hey after all, Forest Gump needed a brace too, but look how everything worked out for him and it will for me too.

NOTE: DONATIONS - When our non-profit (Outreach to Pets In Need) was formed, it was meant for animals just like Forest. He is the most needy animal we have helped so far. We just couldn't turn our back on him. It goes without saying that the medical costs for Forest will mount quickly. If you would like to make a donation to our shelter's "Forest's Fund" to help with the cost of his medical care, please mail a check to: OPIN, Inc. c/o Stamford Animal Care & Control, Laurie Hollywood, Manager, 201 Magee Avenue, Stamford, CT 06902. Checks should be made payable to our non-profit organization, OPIN, Inc. (Outreach to Pets In Need) Your donation is 100% tax deductable.
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

Another one of these guys? Seems like there are so many now! Spirit and Eli have this condition (anyone remember what it's called?) and they are both doing great. And isn't there someone who is keeping track of all the puppies with this condition? Guess this is another thing to add to the list of gsd ailments...sigh.

Joanne, are you out there? Want another one?
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

what a dear little face!
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

We still don't know what is causing this "defect", but it is likely a motor neuron disease that is as yet undocumented. The vets at NC State and UT are trying to figure things out. I'll write to the shelter and let them know about the other dogs I know with this condition (Spirit, Eli, Quent, BeBe, Delilah, Connor, Bach, Axel, Gabby ...)
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

So sad.... I hope Forest can find a forever home! I sure wish I could bring him home.... he looks like he could be my Angel's brother! (she is about 10 weeks too)
He looks like a sweet heart, and with the right family, he can have a life full of giving and getting love!
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

I would take him in a heartbeat, except that I am fostering Atticus, the 6 month spinal injury GSD who was posted on the board a couple of weeks ago. He has a severe spinal injury and will need surgery and extensive rehab. With 3 wonky GSD's I literally have to wait for them to move their legs before I do!

I have written to the owners of the other GSD's like Spirit and Eli, and the vets at UT and NC State, in the hopes between us we can help Forest. Of course, if it came down to it, I wouldn't see Forest euthanised.
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

This shelter seems very committed...and are going above and beyond....kudos to them!!!
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

Thank you Joanne for sharing your experiences with them. They are definitely going above and beyond for this guy and I'm sure they would appreciate it.
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

I am local to Stamford so I emailed Laurie to see if I could help in anyway. I work during the week day so I could not foster given his therapy requirements but if she needs help on weekends or in raising money - that I can do. I have been to the shelter and while the staff does a good job - it is a very basic municipal shelter. THey get more pits than GSDs.
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

There is actually not much that can be done for these pups except for core strengthening exercises (I have written to the shelter). They all get rigid hind legs, a result of quadriceps and sartorius contractions. Surgery and rehab have been tried on other pups - unfortunately unsuccessfully :-(

The "best medicine" those of us who share our lives with these special angels have found, is simply to let them be, supporting them as they learn to walk with stiff legs, and doing core strengthening exercises on a theraball.
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

Thanks for writing to everyone. I knew you'd pop up--I couldn't remember your login name!
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

Is this a breed specific condition?
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

These dogs present like dogs that have Neospora,which is found in other breeds, however every dog tested has tested negative for both Neospora and Toxoplasmosis.

I am working with the vets at NC State and UT to get tissue samples from affected dogs, in the hope that people can determine the exact cause of this anomaly. The thought is that it may be a motor neuron disease that causes the secondary orthopedic anomalies we see (luxated hips, rotational long bone deformities and luxating patellas). When Eli is neutered next year we will be getting numerous samples from him and possibly doing MRI/EMG to try to pinpoint further the effects.

To answer your question - it does seem as though this is a GSD problem. Anyone who hears of pups affected (some with both hindlimbs, some with just one) please let me know!
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

Thanks Joanne!!
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

It is most likely that this GSD pup has the same unknown congenital anomalies that Spirit, Eli, Connor, BeBe, Quent, Delilah, Finnegan, Axel, Bach, Gabby and possibly other GSD's have.
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

I called and spoke to the shelter staff about Forest and what help was needed. THey told me that little Forest is home with the shelter manager on weekends (God Bless the both), and that she does the therapy on him - but they are in need of funds to continue his treatments. He is not in danger of being pts, but all donations would help them in their efforts. Donations can be made to OPIN - "Forest Fund" - see background and details below:

"On March 1, 2007, OPIN held its organization meeting with Shelter Manager, Laurie Hollywood and a working partnership was formed. OPIN recognizes Laurie’s success, commitment to public safety and compassion toward the well-being of the shelter’s homeless animals and supports the no-kill philosophy for which the shelter has become recognized.

We hope you will share in our vision and our efforts to Outreach to Pets In Need - to make a better life for our homeless friends. Your generosity is truly appreciated. Thank you.

All contributions to OPIN are fully tax deductible.

Donations should be made payable to: OPIN, Inc.

Please indicate for "Forest Fund"

Mailing address:
OPIN, Inc. ~ c/o Stamford Animal Care & Control ~
201 Magee Avenue ~ Stamford, CT 06902"
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

While I applaud the shelter trying rehab, if Forest has what the other similarly looking GSD's have (I don't know if he has had radiographs/ labwork run), then rehab unfortunately won't be affective, except if it helps core strength. His hindlimbs will become permanently straight and stiff - no amount of rehab can help because in addition to muscle contractures these dogs have luxated hips and rotational bone deformities.

Having said this, these deformities/anomalies are not painful and affected dogs can, and do, live happy, normal, independent lives.
 

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Re: Stamford, CT--10wk old pup--SPECIAL NEEDS

On the video, when she does rehab - he cries out in pain. Is it unnecessary to put him through that? She is doing what was recommended by the vet.
 
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