BALTIMORE, MARYLAND.......It has been said that a picture is worth a thousand words. That is until the pictures are so horrific and cruel that words alone are not enough. Outrage is not enough. Crying is not enough. There is no emotion that we can grab in times of utter shock to hold us grounded when an innocent creature is tortured the way this incredible little dog has been. The best we can piece together based on FRECKLES injuries is that someone dragged him behind a vehicle for quite a long distance. On one side of his body on his rear leg, the skin has literally been rubbed off from constant friction. That same leg has part of a bone that has also been dragged so much that it has gone into the bone itself. This poor dogs feet, belly & knuckles have all been worn down from constant friction. As if starving a dog to where he is nothing but skin and bones is not enough, someone then had to drag him. How Freckles is still with us is a Miracle all by itself. Freckles was found when Animal Control was called to come and check out an animal that was heard moaning in a trash dumpster. God knows how long he had been there. Animal Control immediately took him to Essex Middle River Veterinary Center where the incredible Doctors and Staff worked tirelessly to access his condition and determine the best course of action to save his life. During this time an x-ray determined sweet Freckles had a stomach full of coins. They did surgery to remove the coins and put a feeding tube in. A plea was sent out for anyone willing to step up that could get Freckles the Critical Care he so desperately and could do it for a month or more. I immediately contacted BARCS and told them I would gladly take care of this wonderful dog. They would never have to worry about him getting the best medical care possible because that is all we do. We made arrangements to pick him up and bring him to South Carolina. We had to wait several days for him to get stabilized and then I flew someone up to drive this boy to us. He was given a live transfusion before he left and was kept on all of his meds along with a catheter and an IV to keep him comfortable. We were going to have him flown here but decided this was the safest and least traumatic way for him to come to us. We had ER facilities mapped out for every hour of the drive if anything should happen along the way. Freckles was getting the same care in the vehicle he had been getting in the hospital. Our dear boy arrived at the Critical Care facility in Charleston around 11:00 last night. Critical Care Physicians came in to work on him all through the night. He was given another transfusion after he arrived. He was then lightly sedated so the surgeons could debride his wounds and get cultures from all of the open areas including the bone that appeared to be infected. Essex Hospital had already started Freckles on a very potent antibiotic because he was Septic. The antibiotic was working but we needed to know exactly what we were dealing with to make sure we were treating the infection with the best course of antibiotic. Freckles is in Critical Care and will remain here for as long as it takes to get him over this. Our little boy is close to one year old and has the best fighting spirit. He is here today because he wants to be here. What he has endured, very few animals could have. We are hoping and praying his young age will be in his favor and allow his body to fight off everything that is being thrown at it. I know a lot of you are saying we should put him down. I will tell you the same thing I tell everyone else, as long as an animal is fighting to be here, I will fight along side him and do whatever it takes to make him comfortable and to thrive. I never give up or give in. An abused animal always lets us know when it is time to let them go. If that time comes, we will hold and love them and help them peacefully cross over the Rainbow Bridge. That is not the case right now with Freckles. He is fighting with every ounce of energy he has to make it. He is being monitored in ICU 24 hours a day with the best possible doctors and veterinary technicians around. He could not be in better hands. We will do updates every day on his progress and sometimes twice a day since he is so critical. Pray for our little boy so he can survive this and finally learn what love truly is. We need every penny we can get to save Freckles. Since he is in Intensive Care and will be for quite a while, his medical bills are going to be exorbitant. I never stop treatment if the funds aren’t there. I personally pay them myself to make sure each animal gets everything they need to survive and thrive. If you can’t donate this time, please, send to all your animal loving friends and then say a Prayer in his honor.
Our sweet boy is all puffed up from the fluids he has been given. He has a lot more than normal urine output and the fluids have got to help him maintain his blood pressure and protect his kidneys from the heavy antibiotics he is on. He has gained about 5 pounds since he was first rescued. What you are seeing in this picture is fluid retention. We will be doing a Canine Albumin Transfusion over the next two days to help him hold his fluids so we can cut them back. As you can see from the photo above, he is comfortable and resting peacefully which is exactly what we want. We have finally found a good combination of drugs that he is happy with.
Sweet Freckles continues to fight to be here. He is stable but requires a lot of medical intervention to keep him that way. The main reason for his instability is that his wounds are large and open and they release a large amount of fluid. That fluid is from the body doing it’s best to repair the areas and to rid the body of the infection. Because of this Freckles Albumen level is dangerously low. Yesterday we started a Human Albumen Transfusion to help his body maintain a healthier albumen level and to keep the fluids we are administering from going right through his body. We still have a lot of kidney output but it has improved since the albumin transfusion completed last night. We are relieved to finally have his blood pressure regulated and his blood levels coming up. We lightly sedated our dear boy yesterday to do surgery on his wounds. His wounds are still very graphic so we will not be posting those. We were able to close up some of the wounds and debride others. During the procedure, the surgeon was able to thoroughly evaluate the rear leg that has been mangled so badly. We discovered that the ligaments around his Tibia and Patella are completely torn away. There is no hope of ever re-attaching them. Once we get Freckles stable and his blood levels are replenishing on their own, unfortunately, we will have to remove the leg. We have done everything possible to save the leg and now we know that is not possible. We will continue to debride the leg and to treat it so it does not hinder his recovery. It still is a big part of his recovery and has to be handled as if it were to remain. Our sweet little Angel is still not able to stand up because he is too weak. He is eating like a horse which is the good news. We can only give him small meals at a time because of his emaciated state. Unfortunately, Freckles body went so long without food that it does not know how to process the food he is taking in. At this time we are dealing with Refeeding Syndrome which is a syndrome consisting of metabolic disturbances that occur as a result of reinstitution of nutrition. We are having to regulate his glucose and his phosphorous because of this. This syndrome can be life-threatening if not controlled. We are hoping his body will regulate itself within the next week. Right now we are dealing with the metabolic disturbances as they occur. Because he is too weak to stand and move around, he is manually moved and turned so he does not get bed sores. His best healing is done when he is quiet and resting. Freckles is getting 24 hour care in ICU where he will remain for several weeks. For him to survive, he has to remain here. He is being monitored every second of the day so we can address any problems that occur from his conditions. He has an incredible team of Internist and Critical Care Physicians that are in charge of his care. He is with us today because of this. The best part is that Freckles is a fighter and is doing his part. Our little Miracle boy has proven time and time again that he is not giving up. As long as he is doing his part, we will be doing ours. He is still in Critical Care and will be for some time. We quit trying to figure out the cost a long time ago because his bills were escalating so quickly. He will definitely be our million dollar baby. We have a lot of dogs that have had that title but this little one seems to be surpassing those at a rapid speed. Please, do whatever you can to help us with his care. As everyone knows that has ever followed Noah’s Arks Rescue, each animal gets the best possible care always. No exception. What isn’t raised, I guarantee payment always. Freckles will get exactly what his team of Critical Care Physicians says he needs, no matter what. We are all so thankful he has fought so hard to be here so he can finally see what true love and commitment is. We do not know what his outcome medically will be but we do know he will know LOVE and that to us is everything.
I am happy to say that our dear boy has been able to hold his head up some today. Before we had to help him and today he seems to be a little more lively. He is eating like a champ and has remained stable all day with constant care and monitoring. Here he is taking a treat. He is still in ICU Critical Care and will remain there for several weeks. The other good news is that he has stopped retaining fluids and his body is becoming more regulated. You can tell there is a big difference from yesterday’s cute puffy picture to how he is now. The one above is how he should be.
Freckles had a great day today. I was with him for most of this afternoon and it is amazing the difference in how animated he has become. We started doing physical therapy yesterday to see what we could do so his muscles do not atrophy more than they already have. I don’t believe our sweet boy was given an opportunity to walk very much in his life. He has very little muscle mass at all. His condition had gone beyond being emaciated. It is more like he has been this way most of his life. We did surgery on both legs today to get rid of any necrotic tissue that had formed. He still has a large area on his front leg that has become a terrible problem. All the tissue was removed and bandages were applied to keep the area as sterile as possible. Our only hope of saving his front leg is if we can get the tissue to stop dying. We are doing everything possible to save both legs but right now both legs are in danger. We are going to wait two weeks to determine which leg cannot be brought back and which leg has the best possible chance. Based on what we are seeing, we will know during that time which one will have to go to save his Life. Right now, we are treating them both as aggressively as possible. The physical therapy has been wonderful for Freckles. It has given him a small sense of freedom. He is placed over a ball where we move him so he contracts his muscles. He tires easily but does like doing it and it is the only way we can restore any muscles to his body. The other Earth Shattering news is that he had a bowel movement. His lower GI system had shut down for a while and it is now working. That was going to be a huge problem if we could not restore that. His albumen levels have remained stable and he is getting his final Albumen transfusion tonight. We have also cut back on his feedings because he still has Re-Feeding Syndrome and it was causing us to have to give him too much insulin. The best news of all (besides him wagging his tail) is that he has started talking to us. We are all so surprised and excited that he feels well enough to want to interact and talk. The past 5 days he has just laid there and slept. He is taking lots of baby steps. He is still in ICU and will remain there for a while. I feel really good about adorable Freckles and refuse to think anything but positive thoughts for a wonderful outcome. Enjoy the video. Thanks for helping us with his care.
Freckles Nightly Update.......Our wonderful little Angel has beaten the odds and is showing us all how determined he is to survive this. Today he was a totally different dog. He woke up alert and hungry. He sat up with his head lifted for quite a long time just watching all of the techs and Doctors go about their morning rounds. He is getting stronger every day. We have cut back his food and that is helping his insulin levels. His cultures have come back and none were staph resistant bugs. They are definitely more aggressive than everyday bugs but are sensitive to several different antibiotics. Now the bad news, his right foreleg is continuing to produce necrotic skin. We did more surgery today to remove the dead skin which you can see in the photo. I think it is important for everyone to see what we are dealing with daily. The good news is that after the removal, we were able to get viable tissue on the edges that we feel will begin to grow healthy tissue. It is a slow process but a necessary one to save the leg. All dead tissue has been removed from the rear leg and today it looked pink and viable. Freckles still is septic and has infection in his limbs and system. We have made wonderful strides with this which his blood work shows. I can't even begin to tell you how incredible it is to see this little wonder dog hold his head up and try to get up. He is our Little Miracle. His strength inspires us all to fight that much harder for him. The World is a better place because of Freckles. The leg picture will be posted on his web page and now I will delight you all with his Rehab Session today. Thanks for caring and sharing his story of Triumph over Tragedy. Miracles do happen.
Our sweet boy is doing his yoga version of Downward Dog.
I love this picture and had to share it. Our sweet boy is resting after all of his rehab and is able to partially curl up like a normal dog would. We are doing rehab three times during the day and three times at night. His blood levels have been stable and we have slowly gotten him off his blood pressure medicine since he has been able to keep his blood pressure in a normal range. Bandage changes have revealed to us that we need to take even more aggressive action to save the limbs. His wounds have been stable but still not filling in the way we had hoped they would. I bought a V. A. C. negative pressure wound care system to give Freckles the best possible chance to save his legs. His spirits are great and he feels wonderful. He is tired from all the rehab but a good tired. He is making wonderful progress that is putting a smile on everyone's face. Our little Miracle is here because of his strong WILL to Live and the incredible Physicians and Vet. Techs that are spending countless hours healing and nurturing him. The Staff at Charleston Veterinary Referral Center in Charleston, SC is one of the top Critical Care facilities in the Country. It is because of them he is still with us today. When you get a chance give them a big Shout-Out on their Facebook page to let them know we all appreciate them going above and beyond for this wonderful boy. We greatly appreciate all the love and support we have been getting to help FRECKLES survive this terrible ordeal. His community of Guardian Angels is growing by leaps and bounds. Thanks for caring and helping us with our Little Wonder Boy.
Our sweet boy had another great night. His version of a great night is to not have any complications. Something that a lot of people do not realize is that he is still in ICU in Critical Care and will be for quite a long time. The pictures add weight to him but he is still literally skin and bones. We have made a lot of progress but he still has months and months to go with his medical care. Because he still has open wounds, his body is working overtime to keep up with this calories it takes to heal. We had to cut back on his food to get him out of Re-feeding Syndrome. He is still getting enough calories for a large dog. A lot more than he would have ever required. Healing takes a lot of energy and the fact his wounds are still draining takes a lot more. He has not gained any weight over the last 5 days. We are not concerned because he is eating so much. Any animal that has been starved to the degree he was has to go through this process. The new Vacuum Wound Care System arrived yesterday and was immediately put into action. It is pulling the fluids out of his wounds which enables us to not have to change bandages as often. That is a huge plus for him since he has to be sedated to do them. The video above is of him doing rehab last night. They are having to support him but he is doing his best to walk and use his legs which he has not been able to do since he was rescued. For him to hold his weight on his legs and not collapse is a Miracle. Our Little Wonder Boy’s recovery does not go by one day at a time progress but goes by one minute at a time. Tremendous progress has been made. He is still off his insulin and his blood pressure medicine and is stable. He is still on heavy antibiotics and fluids and will be until his cultures come back normal. All of his wounds are coated in a layer of Manuka Healing Honey that comes from New Zealand to help his wounds heal faster and to fight infection. FRECKLES is a happy boy that has adjusted to his care and surroundings. There are certain people that he immediately lights up when they come into the room. They crawl into his area and give him lots of affection and help with his healing process. Thanks for all the support and encouragement with the care of this incredible little dog. He survived another day without any complications and that is worth celebrating.
FRECKLES is having surgery this morning to change his bandages. I wanted to let everyone see how far his woulds have come and how far we still need to go. As you can see, all dead, necrotic tissue has been removed and we now have viable tissue that will eventually granulate enough for us to close the edges. We have to take baby steps with this much tissue has been destroyed and is infected. The good part is that we now have only good tissue that is remaining. We are doing everything we can for it to remain viable. If you have forgotten just how bad he was, go all the way down to the bottom to see how bad he was in the beginning.
Good-Morning World......Look who has decided he could walk a few steps on his own. Food is a great motivator.
Our sweet boy had another great day. He is alert and doing well with his rehab. All of his bloodwork came back closer into the normal range We can officially say his body is no longer septic He had surgery again on the big wounds that are still wide open The Vacuum Would System is working beautifully on the largest open areas We were able to close up some smaller wounds and the larger ones are beginning to granulate in The best part is that he is able to stand on his own, once we put him into a standing position Standing takes up so much energy that he can only do it for a very short period of time The fact he can do it at all is a miracle He is still in ICU and will be for a while He has gained 4 ounces since two days ago which is promising He loves nut butters to lick during rehab He sees the rehab techs and he immediately starts licking his lips We love this incredible little boy that has chosen to not give up and keep fighting I believe the worst is over since he is no longer septic It is just going to be a long time waiting for the wounds to heal and granulate enough for us to stitch them together it will be about 4 months before his weight is all back on and about 6 months before he has enough muscle to walk for any length of time We will be with him all along the way Thanks for caring and sharing his story.