On Friday November 8th while at work, a stray dog appeared outside my office. The Humane Society was contacted and they told us that Animal Control had to be called for strays. As I stood looking on at this sad puppy that was covered in mange, malnourished, and yet so sweet, I knew that I had to do what I could to help her. It is obvious that she is a type of pit, and not knowing the personality of the city I was not willing to have her taken and put down. Loading her up in the truck, it was off to the vet I went. All I hoped was I would be told she could be brought back to health and then I would get her a proper home.
THE FIRST VET VISIT
After examining the dog, the vet brought me into the office and said to not waste my time and money. Now, don't fault the vet on this, he was trying to make this easier for me to let the puppy go as she was diagnosed with Generalized demodectic mange; he never outwardly said to put her down, he understands the community, and I live in a rather poor area in the mountainous foothills of Northern Georgia. I asked a few questions and said I needed time to think.
I stepped out of the office and called my husband asking for "permission" to put her down, all the while crying. He said that he had not met the dog and it was my decision but would support me if there was or was not a new dog at the house when he got home. I then called the office and spoke with my Director. She asked if I wanted her to come down and I told her no, I had it taken care of. Ten minutes later she walked through the door to the clinic, thank God she didn’t listen to me.
We wanted more answers from the vet so we talked with him for a while. Here is the deal, I am a military family and we have 2 children (4 & 1), 2 dogs (both labs, one blind), and a cat. I asked if the mange was contractible to the family - no, we asked if dogs can come back from mange that is this severe - yes, we asked what the bills would look like - $1500 - $2000 over the next couple of months for everything from weekly mange baths, shots, wellness visits, fecal tests etc. My Director said she would help out with some of the costs if I wanted to take little girl on.
I said yes, something so quickly grabbed hold of my heart with this little lady and I knew she needed my help. The next day I was able to bring her home. She looked horrible but I know there is something special in there. My son was scared of her and ran away crying, she of course playfully chased him and frightened him even more. My one year old loves her already and through all the crusty scabs, leaned in gave her a kiss and rested her head on the puppy's side. The dogs accept her but are trying to figure out the pack order, not through fighting each other but through who can get the most attention from us!
WHAT'S IN A NAME
This little girl has been named Sparta. In Greek mythology, Sparta was said to be a fair and beautiful maiden worth defending and protecting at all costs. Villages and armies would often shout her name before entering battle representing what they were fighting for. Many of us know Sparta as a city, unique in ancient Greece for its social system and constitution, which completely focused on military training and excellence. Our lady Sparta is worth defending and protecting at all costs.
The bills... I am raising money to help alleviate the cost of her vet bills. I know that she needs a mange dip weekly for a few months; this runs $40 each visit. Shots, I don't know the full cost, but I know that it will have to be done. Fixing her - hey, I'm a responsible pet owner! Medications- Sparta needs antibiotics to fight the infections that currently cover her body. I'm not entirely sure what this will come to monthly, but I can tell you the injections she got on her first go round came to $87.
Any funds rose above and beyond what is needed for Sparta will be then redonated to a dog who suffered a similar background. It takes a village to raise a well rounded child, she is now my child and I will do anything I can to help her.