In mid January, the SOS Beagle Rescue was forwarded a request for help on an injured beagle puppy. Of course we stepped up to help but once we met Lark we realized she was neither a puppy nor injured.
She was taken directly to Pellissippi Veterinary Hospital for X-ray and evaluation by our SOS vet with 25 years of orthopedic surgery experience, Dr Pat Hackett. You may remember? Dr. Hackett and his capable staff put Humpty Dumpty Hal back together again after a hit by car accident in 2011. Pellissippi Veterinary Hospital has also helped hundreds of beagles like Cookie, Gertie, Ambrosia, Chance, Gidget, Midge and more. Visit www.sosbeagles.org for more information on this 20 year old Beagle rescue.
Sadly Lark was born with two bad knees, allowing her kneecaps to ride on the outside of the joint and her leg bones to rub together painfully. This created a splayed, hunched, duck like walk. Even the intense pain could not diminish her zest for and love of life.
Just like Hal, we hope to see Lark placed into her loving forever home soon.
Lark, aka Larkspur, is our newest special needs case, and the first 2013 recipient of a Dorothy Schuda Fund grant.
Lark was a hungry, dirty, flea-ridden beagle who was found by the side of the road in Tennessee by a kind couple. She had a bad limp, and they thought she had been hit by a car, but she had no sign of recent injuries. They took the young beagle home and cleaned her up. The husband fell in love with her and wanted to keep her, but they had no income and knew she needed veterinary help. They posted on Craig’s List looking for a Good Samaritan. They agreed to meet any rescuer at the vet’s. At that point, SOS Beagle Rescue, Tennesse, stepped up to the plate! Lark was evaluated by our vet to see just what, if anything, could be done to help correct what turned out to be a serious double knee issue she has probably had since birth. Unlike the normal case of luxating patella, her knee caps are outside the knee, forcing both knees to fold in. She had low muscle tone and very poor mobility. As Dr. Hackett said, we sure brought him a challenging case!
Note that Lark is straightening her right rear leg! That bodes well for a surgical fix. Paws crossed she gets a good X-ray report tomorrow and begins her road to recovery.
Update Feb 11, 2013:
Lark had her second surgery today on her right rear leg. A deep groove was cut into the smooth area and the kneecap was anchored in place. Pretty amazing to see. Can’t wait to see how Lark recovers over time. This tiny 9 lb girl deserves a long and pain free life! Thank you Pellissippi Veterinary Hospital, SOS, Jan and Dr Hackett for taking on this challenge… A special thank you to Tiffany and Jeremy for allowing this cutie to convalesce and blossom in your home.
Update Jan 20, 2013:
Lark, our tiny double knee surgery girl, update from her awesome fosters Tiffany Bartlett and Jeremy. Lark and her snuggle buddy copper. Her foster mom says,
“Lark is still pretty timid, but hit a milestone this morning. She gave me kisses when I got her this morning and she braved going out the door to pee outside and run right back in. She loves the company of the other dogs, chews and plays with all toys! She still barks when Jeremy walks into the room, but as soon as he pets her she relaxes and melts in his arms. Doesn’t really seem to like men yet? She met the baby and thought he was the greatest.”
Update Jan 17, 2013:
Lark is safely tucked away in her roomy puppy playpen, to think Tiffany was worried it might be too small?
Update Jan 14, 2013:
Lark update: All the veterinarians at Pellissippi Veterinary Hospital are amazed. She prefers walking using the surgery leg just 3 days post op. That just tells us how painful her congenital condition has become in her short life. Though not real steady and not a pretty gait, you can see how much more stable the leg with the fixed knee is versus the other. Once this one heals satisfactorily we will work on her other knee. Keep good thoughts. She should be heading to TN foster soon. Thanks all.
Update Jan 12, 2013:
Lark had surgery on her left knee this afternoon. The femur had some scarring but there was absolutely no groove for the knee cap to follow/hold. Dr. Hackett created a groove and did the necessary attachments. We aren’t expecting a perfect gait but hope to stop the rubbing, pain and further injury.
Ambrosia’s foster dogs, Tiffany and Jeremy, have stepped up to help Lark in the first phase of her re-hab. Their home is ideally set up to accommodate her. Michelle Bauer, Button’s foster also stopped by to see the wee one and expressed an interest to help during subsequent rehab.