I would like you all to meet my fur baby Pancake. I rescued Pancake and his brother Waffles from a backyard breeder almost 10 years ago.
This story is actually a pretty long one, but for the sake of getting my important point across to you I will keep it brief.
*Warning, there are a couple graphic images later in this post*
This “breeder” had many different breeds and they were all stuffed in enclosures stepping on each other with no room to move. They were all barking, crying, screaming, just standing there my heart was breaking. Waffles looked healthy, but Pancake was bald, and his eyes didn’t look good. Even though he was most likely feeling horribly, he still wagged his tail, gave kisses, and wanted out of the enclosure. When I asked about them, I was basically told pay for the little one (Waffles) and you can have the other one free (Pancake). I couldn’t leave either one of them there, in fact if I could have I would have taken every dog she had. The reality was I couldn’t, but Pancake looked so sick I knew I had to get him out of there; I paid her and was on my way with two Pugs.
I took them both to my Veterinarian the next morning. Waffles was given a clean bill of health, but poor Pancake was diagnosed with a severe case of demodectic mange and eye ulcers. For those who are not familiar with demodex, it is a common infestation of the dog’s skin with tiny, cigar-shaped, eight-legged mites; Also referred to as demodectic mange, the mites reside and feed on the hair follicle and oil glands of the skin.
Pancake was also dragging one of his back legs a little, cause unknown. My Veterinarian prescribed medications for his mange, but was extremely worried about his eyes and insisted I take him to an eye specialist. She said she was worried he could end up losing his eyes.
There was no doggie eye specialist in my area, the nearest one was over an hour away. I left the Vet and immediately drove to the ophthalmologist. Tests were performed and then many medications were prescribed: eye drops and pills and liquids, oh my! Thankfully we were able to save Pancake’s eyes and clear up his mange. Through it all Pancake exhibited the sweetest most loving disposition. He wagged his tail and went on to live his new life, enjoy soft beds, play with toys, eat good healthy food.
Many wonderful years went by, Pancake healed well and he and his brother Waffles lived life to the fullest, being spoiled like all my fur babies! Sadly, Waffles passed away from cancer at the age of 7. Pancake was sad he and his brother were very bonded, but his other fur siblings stepped in and helped ease the pain of the loss, and again he moved forward to enjoy life.
Then, a couple years ago, I was trying to help a rescue dog, Blossom. If you read my post about Blossom’s Journey you read that she attacked 2 of my own dogs without provocation. Until today the cause of that attack is unknown but one of the dogs she went after was my sweet Pancake, ripping off the top of his head. Rushing to the nearest Veterinary ER I didn’t know if he would make it, he had a seizure right there in the car. It was the most frightening dog fight I had ever seen and working in rescue I had seen many. Pancake was such a sweet sedate dog, he didn’t even fight back. I felt like I was in a nightmare, a horror movie.
We made it to the ER, and after the injury and the seizure, Pancake insisted on walking into the ER like nothing happened, I was dumbfounded. He was suddenly acting ok, wagging his tail at the Vet, and at the technicians like nothing happened. In the meantime he was bleeding profusely. The extent of his injuries were severe, he required 3 surgeries in total, which is a major thing for a Pug due to the anesthesia. The Vet bills for Pancake and his other fur brother were in excess of $10,000 total.
In between surgeries, Pancake had to stay at the hospital, and I would go every day and visit him. I would bring his other injured brother, Pop-Tart, with me to visit him as he was sent home after his single surgery. Pancake was happy every time I came. Greeting his brother and myself with such joy. He acted like all was ok, nothing was wrong. Surgery, pain, on medications, in a scary place away from mom, he was still happy. He would wag his tail and try to jump up to me with joy.
It was a very long recovery for Pancake and his brother Pop-Tart. They both took their meds, had physical therapy and are now healthy considering the ordeal. Pancake unfortunately ended up with nerve damage and is unable to blink or close his eyes, causing him to remain on eye drops the rest of his life. The dragging the leg issue he had when I rescued him has also returned and it seems arthritis has set in. Due to this, Pancake has been on CBD Oil for quite some time now and I have noticed results. (he has too many stomach upsets from prescription meds) If you are interested in reading my post about CBD Oil you can find it here:
It has been a little over 2 years since the attack and Pancake is celebrating his 11th Birthday today! He is a very happy, spoiled, pampered boy.
My point in sharing this story with you is that even though Pancake went through SO much he did it like a real champ! Dogs are so much more resilient than people, they forgive, they love, they move on. We can definitely learn a great deal from our pups! Dogs can teach us so many important life lessons, to live in the moment, overcome fear with love, to not hold grudges, and greet every day with optimism. To play every day, jump for joy, it’s not about winning or losing, accept yourself, enjoy the journey, take time to relax, drink lots of water, take time to appreciate the small things, be loyal, dependable and love unconditionally.
I can tell you that I have personally learned all these things and more and hope that by sharing Pancake’s story with you, you will learn these things too.