Sunday, May 27, 2012



Hey everyone, my name is Duke.  I am an 18 month old Anatolian Shepherd Dog and this is my story.....

Last September my owners found out that I had heartworms.  Soon thereafter I started losing a lot of weight and my back feet felt really strange.  I kept licking them all the time but no one really thought much of it at first.  Then my back feet started to turn a funny color and look odd so my owners took me to the doctor.  The vet told them that my feet were dying due to lack of blood supply.  I thought to myself, "That can't be good."  And I was right.

I went to several different doctors and they finally found out that the heartworms were not in my heart but were instead in the arteries of my back legs and they had pretty much shut off the blood supply to my feet.
I'm not well versed in the language of humans but I definitely knew this did not sound good.
And again, I was right.

The doctors did emergency surgery and removed about 50 heartworms from my feet and legs.  They also found a big blood clot in my femoral artery and removed that as well. They did maggot therapy to eat the dead tissue but after all of these efforts my feet and toes were too far gone and had to be removed.
I was hoping that my lack of understanding of human words had caused me to interpret that whole conversation incorrectly.  Unfortunately, though, again, I was right.

So in November they amputated both of my back feet.  Since then I have spent most of my time at several different vet hospitals recovering from my surgery.  It has not been a lot of fun, let me tell you.
 I was in a cage most of the time and I was not too happy having all those people messing with my bandages and making me do things I didn't want to do.

The humans decided to put these fake feet on me and I tried my best to walk in those things but it just didn't work out.  Plus it hurt really bad and they made big sores on my stumps.  Yes, that's what I call my back legs now.  They are my stumps.

I guess you could say I was not a happy camper and the doctors at the vet hospital thought it would be better for me to be back home.
That would be all fine and dandy but my owners didn't think they could give me the care I needed.
So.....long awkward pause here......  what's going to happen to me??   No one knew what to do.  Then someone suggested they contact a rescue group and, long story short, I ended up hitching a ride to Little Rock Arkansas.

The one neat thing about when I was at the vet hospital in Tennessee was I met this really nice man named Russ.  He has made arrangements for me to get a custom cart and special liners that I wear on my stumps.  This allows me to be able to run around outside with the other dogs at my foster home and I can sniff around and go potty or whatever.  I also get to have a short walk around the block while my decubitus ulcers heal on my stumps.

I've got a really cool lady living with me.  She has this awesome bed that I lounge around on and she has an amazing yard with all kinds of exciting things for me to sniff around in.  There are other dogs here, too, which is fun.  Most of them are ok but one is kind of crabby and she doesn't like me much.

I have these liners that my friend Russ got for me and My Lady puts on my stumps then she takes me on walks.  It is so much fun, way better than that cage at the hospital.  And those sores I told you about before, they're getting better.  One is almost gone now and the others are getting better day by day.

I had four sores when I first got here and now I only have two left that haven't healed yet.  I'm going for some special laser therapy several times a week and that helps them get better faster.  I also get daily bandage changes.....sometimes three or four times a day.  That's because I like to take a look under the bandages when I'm not supposed to.  For some reason the humans are the only ones allowed to take my bandages off and they tell me I'm supposed to wait for them and not do it myself. Not sure what that's all about but whatever!  Grown ups have a lot of rules, am I right?

 When I first got here I had to take six different medicines so they could try and make me live in a cage most of the time.  Now I only have to take three medicines and each week I'm taking less.  My Lady said the plan is for me to not have to take any more medication by the time my ulcers heal.

  Then I will get some new and better shoes that will be custom made for my stumps.  I overheard some of the humans talking and they said these special people made a shoe for an elephant at the zoo too!  Can you believe that?  An elephant with a shoe?  Get outta here!  Well at least Im not as big as an elephant so surely they can figure something out for my stumps.

 I'm so happy and excited now because things just keep getting better and better.  I had given up all hope when I was living in that dumb old cage.  Plus they kept giving me something called Anna-Stee-Zha.  Not sure what it is but it made me sleepy and they gave it to me every three days when they wanted to change my bandages.  Boy, I did NOT like that at all.

Now that Im with My Lady, I let her do whatever she wants with my bandages because I know she is helping my stumps heal.  I just want to say, for the record, that I really am a very good boy.  When I was at the vet hospital I just wanted to check things out and try to help them with my stumps.  My Lady doesn't mind me helping but those other people did not like it at all.

  Anyway, the point of all this is that I am looking for a place to call my own and a person or family to call my own too.  My Lady is amazing and she takes great care of me but she said I deserve someone that can give me all their love and attention.

If I had to picture in my mind's eye what would be my perfect home it would be....... someone that doesn't mind that I'm missing two feet.   I still get around pretty darn good for a two-footed dog.  I do have a cart being sent to me but right now I walk on my stumps (with my boots on) and I have to say, I have quite a bit of fun just like this.  I'm loving life!

In that perfect home it would be ok if they had another dog, too.  I wouldn't mind that at all.  But I'd be ok if they didn't have another dog too.  Either way is fine.
I'm still a normal teen ager and I like to sniff around and explore the world as much as I can so it would be great if I could find a human that liked to go on walks with me when I'm in an investigative mood.
Just remember, I am still an Anatolian Shepherd dog and I do like to bark.  My Lady says I have a loud bark.  But hey, it's in my nature and I'm just trying to protect what I've got good going on here.

 So, hey, that's my story!  Stay tuned, though, because life has just begun and I plan on making each new day count.  Check back in for more updates on me.

If anyone has questions about adoption, or to hear more about how awesome I am,

Take care and I will TTYS
Best Wishes,
The Duke

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