Breed: French Bulldog
Current Location: San Antonio, TX
Adoption Date: August 19, 2016
Adopted by: Karen Harrison
The journey for Leona has been a long one but today it has officially come full circle.
Her new family drove up from San Antonio last night to spend the night at a hotel with D.S. her foster mom and go over everything they need to know about her care.
This afternoon they came up to the Ranch to finalize her adoption. What a joy it was to meet this little girl, so full of life and character. I got to watch her drive around in her little cart like it was all her own, her 5 point turns are amazing.
Karen Harrison will be her new mama and she will live with a house full of kids and a Dogue De Bordeaux named Willow as her sister. Her new name will be Fiona and she will want for nothing, and be doted on in a way that she never knew in her previous life. All of us at Dog Ranch Rescue learned so much about handicapped dogs through this little girl and we are thrilled that we took a chance on her.
It was tough for D.S. to say goodbye to her, she was very special. I did get to snap some photos of her wishing her well in her new life. D.S. doesn’t want to be photographed, or named on social media, so I focused on their goodbye from behind.
Have a very, very happy life Fiona.About Leona:
Leona has come such a very long way since we rescued her, I have Included the story of everything about her below but for now she is happy and healthy, She’s just 4 years old and with the exception of being unable to use her legs she is a perfectly content little girl.
She is now ready for adoption with her wheels in tow, we are looking for someone that is willing to take on a special needs little Frenchie that gets along perfectly with everyone two legged and 4 legged.
I am including a very extensive bio written by her foster mom so that you can understand exactly what is needed to care for her on a daily basis.
A day with Leona:
I usually wake up between 6-8 am. Leona is usually not awake yet and most of the time with stay asleep until I actually speak to her. So, I go let the other pups out as fast as I can and then go back to her. The first thing I do is sit down in her area, pick her up, hug her and cover her face in sweet, slow kisses which she loves. Then I get a pee pad out, lay it down in her area, and stand her up over it. She supports her front end and using one hand I support her hind end. The other hand I shape in the form of a “U” and reach under her belly to find her bladder, which is VERY easy to feel especially first thing in the morning. She pees a lot in the morning. ☺ Her bladder feels like a small water balloon and is very distinguishable. When I find her bladder, I place my thumb on one side and 4 finger tips on the other and just gently massage back and forth. First morning pee barely takes any pressure before she starts gushing out lol. I just continue the back and forth massaging until I feel like her bladder is pretty well empty. Since incontinent dogs are very prone to urinary tract infections, I express her bladder pretty frequently which is about every 2-4 hrs. Sometimes she doesn’t have much to express and sometimes she does. I just don’t want the urine sitting in her bladder for long periods if I can help it. The vet said she should be fine with holding it 6-8 hrs. If I have to leave the home for that long, which isn’t very often, then I am ok with that but if I am home during the day then I just don’t see any point in making her wait that long and figure that will lesson her chances of a UTI.
Sometimes while massaging her bladder I can also feel her colon and will massage that area which sometimes will prompt her to poop and she ALWAYS poops first thing in the morning. If she doesn’t poop in this position, then when she is done peeing, I put her in my lap on her back and with thumb and finger massage the outer edges of her rectal area which also prompts her to poop. She usually does a good amount so if she’s having a slow morning then I just sit there with her loving on her and playing with her and after a few minutes go back to massaging her butt and she usually goes some more. If after a bit she doesn’t do anything then sometimes I chalk it up to maybe she is done and I put her down after wiping her bottom. I pick up the pee pad and head down the hallway and she comes flying up right beside me, if not ahead of me, as she knows the next thing on the agenda is breakfast.
If she didn’t poop earlier or didn’t poop enough, then sometimes her first movements will prompt her to and she may poop as she’s waiting for breakfast, so that’s just something to watch for. When that happens, I just get the paper towels and cleaner out and clean up the mess on the floor and then her butt. If you don’t catch it right away, she doesn’t realize she’s pooping and may drag her legs and feet through it. Then it’s just getting her out of it as quickly as possible and into a bath, or at least a partial one to clean off the dirty area. Another thing to watch for, again if you aren’t quick enough, is that once she realizes she has pooped she will rush over to make it a snack! Yes, she is a poop eater. Usually if she poops good first thing, then she is good for a while after breakfast and then after the breakfast poop she is good usually for at least 6-8 hrs, if not until her after dinner poop.
I do not keep her in diapers while she is in the house. There is no need as long as there are frequent expressions. I usually do not leave the house for long periods of time but have had a few times that I’ve been gone for up to 6 or 7 hours and she has been just fine. As soon as I get home, I let the other dogs outside then immediately get the pee pad out and go to her. If I take her with me anywhere, I just make sure to take a few minutes with her beforehand to see if she needs to go. Usually with massaging both areas, she will go every time. Sometimes when taking her places I will go ahead and put her diaper on and if I do that then I put her clothes on as well.
I have hardwood and tiled floors in my home which she slides very easily on so while she is inside there really isn’t much need to put her in her cart. I will every so often but not usually. I do not let her outside without it though as I don’t want her dragging herself through the grass or on any concreted or wooden areas. If I take her with me anywhere I always put her in her cart and she just zooms along. I put her collar on with tags however I don’t attach the leash to that. Instead, I attach it to the cart bar that goes across the top of her back and lead her that way. Every now and then she will stop as if in protest but the second someone comes along who shows the slightest interest in her, off she goes as fast as she can to them bouncing up and down on her front legs with excitement. She moves well on carpet also but I’m not sure of whether prolonged scooting on carpet would cause her carpet burns or wear away at the hair in the areas making contact or not.
As for her feeding, I feed in the morning and in the evening. She is currently on Purina Puppy Chow which she seems to like very well. She gets about ¾ -1 cup each serving. She is very food motivated and will quickly scoot over to you whenever she hears you in the kitchen messing with any kind of wrapper that sounds like treat bags. She will also follow you wherever you go, if you are carrying food and she can smell it. She likes to hope that her sad little face might just win her a taste and many times she wins ☺ I do however limit the treats as it is important to keep her at a healthy weight. Excess weight would cause more stress on her back than she should have.
As for bedtime, I do worry about her falling off of the bed as well as pooping on the bed so I do put her in her own area for the night which is still in my bedroom where she can see and hear me. Many times though I will bring her on the bed with me and play with her until I am ready to fall asleep myself and then put her down for the night. She is used to it and goes right onto her bed and goes to sleep.
The above description may or may not sound like a lot of work but I can assure you that it most certainly is not. Leona is the first dog that I have cared for like this and I think by far probably the easiest dog I have cared for. She absolutely loves to play, whether it’s with another dog, a cat, or with you. She also loves to receive and give affection. She will lay on her back in your arms just like a little baby and as you rub her neck and chest area will wrap her little paws around your arm as if she never wants to let go. She loves children and seems to playfully feed off of their excitement. She is very gentle with everything she does and is just so full of life. She is comfortable in a kennel or gated area. I have extra-large crates set up with the doors left open in several areas of my home and many times she will scoot right on it and fall asleep on the thick blankets I have in them. If for any reason I need to shut the doors on them or need to put her in her gated area, she doesn’t make any fuss about it. She may play for a bit and then just get comfy and take a nap. There is nothing that holds this girl back and according to her, she has no handicap and is just perfect. She would do well with just about any family whether it’s one with kids, a single person, or especially a family who has a hole in their heart with a special void to fill. She is absolutely a very special girl that has the ability to fill your heart with so much love. Whoever has the pleasure of making sweet Leona a part of their family will know a love they may not have thought possible ☺
There is a YouTube page I have created where I post videos of her as well as other fosters. Here you can see how she interacts with everyone and just how playful and sweet she is. I will also upload a video of her care as I have described it to give a clearer picture. The page is titled Makea Difference.
The story of how we came about rescuing Leona:
We were contacted by Amy Schultz about a mill owner that supposedly took decent care of their dogs.
The mill owner is in Missouri and said she had a female that was (weak in the hind end) she reported that she was fine until just a few weeks ago, she reported that they put her on some prednisone and she was much better. Amy reached out to other French Bulldog rescues but nobody would step up for this girl, we agreed to see what we could do.
The mill owner stated that if a rescue didn’t take her by Saturday they were going to euthanize her. We arranged for pickup and of course our angel on earth D.S. in Missouri offered to take her home. We asked for veterinary records on her and we received them before picking her up. The records stated very clearly that she had a litter of 6 live pups in December of 2015, it also stated that they saw her on 5/07 and 5/10 where her back end was not working. The records say that she was given Prednisone and nsaids both together two times, this combination can cause a dogs stomach to bleed so this was very bad.
The vet records look to be inaccurate stating that she was born in December of 2015 and they also are strangely computerized on the upper half, yet hand written on the lower half.
Once we got her in our possession it was very, very obvious that everything they said was a complete and utter lie (no surprise there) This little girl is in horrific condition, her legs do not work in any way shape or form, nor have they worked for a very long time. It is very clear that they bred her while paralyzed because you don’t need legs to have puppies.
The pictures are graphic and I’m sorry for that but I want you to understand this girls hell, her legs have been dragging around creating open infected wounds, her tail is an open infected wound, and she is covered in infection from head to toe. I cannot begin to express my rage about this dogs condition, my rage for these mill owners, and my rage for what these poor excuses of human beings are doing to do these dogs for the sake of a buck.
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