Update: Baby Sugar (IV)

It’s been a week after Baby Sugar’s surgery to insert an external fixator and try to save her leg. She was back at the vet for a review.

3 months into life and she has never known happiness

Have you ever seen such a sad puppy?  Puppies are supposed to be happy and boisterous. 

Watch her here.

Her wound was bleeding a little because callouses had formed, causing her leg to swell and push against the external fixator. The vet used a spanner to loosen the fixator. Throughout this process, Sugar just lay on the table comfortably, allowing the vet to do all that without a single protest. Pretty amazing for a tiny 2.5 month old puppy.

Trying her best to hold herself up

Checking on her other wounds

Sugar is really sugar, she is such a pleasant dog. Even the vet kept commenting what a darling dog she is.

The vet adjusting her external fixator and look at that sweetheart just lying there!!

In our eyes, Sugar is a PERFECT PUPPY <3

Her wound was bleeding because the external fixator was too tight

After adjusting; the metal must never touch her skin - which is why she needs to return every week to have it adjusted

Sugar has lost a few hundred grams but hopefully will start eating better. We discovered something else too, her front right leg is deformed. 

Her front right leg is deformed. She was probably born this way and will require a surgery when she is fully grown.

The vet says she would need another surgery when she is fully grown, to insert a metal plate in her front leg. That metal would remain in her leg forever.

Sugar taking her first steps at the vet

We're in this with you, Sugar <3

Such a pretty & perfect puppy

Poor Sugar, her problems seem never–ending.

Email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg if you'd like to help baby Sugar.


Harper's Vet Visit & Bad News

These past few weeks have been one blow after another.

Last week, Harper was taken to the vet for leg spasms. Instead, we were told that she's suffering from a degenerative neurological condition and that there is no cure.

Dr Ly checking Harper's pupillary light reflex (PLR)

For those who aren't familiar with Harper's story, she is 4+ years old and was rescued when she was just 6 weeks old. She was born with many deformities. The vet suspected that her mother might have been exposed to high levels of toxins, or maybe hit by a car when she was pregnant. Only Harper survived; all the other unborn puppies died. Harper was born with a broken spine, under-developed organs, and neurological issues. Despite all her problems, Harper was a cheerful puppy, a brave little fighter. Her foster has raised her like any other dog, always encouraging her to try new things. With the help of a wheelchair, Harper gets around just fine and even goes for regular hydrotherapy and massage sessions.

A week ago, Harper's foster noticed that her hind legs were trembling on and off, with sporadic muscle cramps. Her leg would seize up and became bent like a chicken wing. The muscles were so tight that her leg couldn't be straightened. Massaging her leg for about half an hour helped her muscles to relax and straighten, but only for a while. Before long, she would cramp up again. Occasionally, both her hind legs would even become locked together and we would have great trouble separating them.

Over the past 1 week, Harper's nerves have deteriorated and she can no longer stretch her left hind leg

Harper's hind legs locked together while she sleeps - foster needs to check on her regularly and uncross her legs

So we took her to Dr Ly, the vet who saved her and gave her a chance when all the other vets suggested that we put her down. The good vet immediately suspected that Harper's problem was not a muscular one, but a neurological one. He shone a torch into Harper's eyes and confirmed that her pupillary light reflex (PLR) was slow, which is a symptom of a neurological problem. We realized that Harper's difficulty with drinking water was also another symptom. She has trouble coordinating the slurping action, so we have been giving her 400ml to 500ml of subcutaneous fluids per day. She is also unable to pee on her own, and needs help with expressing her bladder.

Getting a jab for her nerves

Dr Ly delivered the sad news that Harper's nerves are deteriorating, and that there’s nothing more that can be done for her. He can give her supplements to slow the deterioration, but there will come a day when Harper will have difficulty eating. We dread that day but deep down, we know it’s inevitable. For a dog born with a broken spine, Harper has come a long way and had an amazing journey. For now, Dr Ly has asked us to stop hydrotherapy but continue with massages and short daily walks.

Oh Baby Harper <3 <3

If you would like to sponsor Harper's vet bill of $150/- or her ongoing massage sessions ($195 for 5 sessions), please email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg.

Written by : Elena


Update: Baby Sugar (II)

Sugar has been discharged from the vet. She's now temporarily under the care of a HOPE volunteer, and we're in the process of looking for a foster home for her.

Watch her video here.

Eyes that show no emotion

Sugar needs to be fed 3 to 4 meals a day. Her current caregiver is monitoring her wound closely to make sure that it's healing well, and that it's not bleeding or weeping pus. Since her surgery last week, Sugar has tried to get up and put weight on 3 of her legs, but she's still in too much pain to stand properly. The vet expects recovery to be slow.

Holed up in a corner, that's all she does 

The vet also commented that Sugar is terrified of everything, such as the vacuum cleaner at the vet's office, and any sudden or loud sounds. Poor Sugar spends a lot of time huddled up in fear and shivering in the corner of her cage. It seems like she isn't just timid, but has actually been badly traumatized in some way. You can just take one look at her eyes and immediately see how much pain and fear she's in. One of the volunteers even asked, "I wonder what she has seen that has made such a young one become this way?"

Sugar with her external fixator to hold her shattered bones in place
Sugar has a large open wound under her left arm, probably got scraped when she took a tumble

Shortly after this photo was taken, she crawled off the bed. She doesn't yet know what a bed is for and prefers lying on pee pads. If you would like to donate a waterproof bed, please let us know. (for easy cleaning)

At least, we're relieved that Sugar has started eating again, even though her appetite is extremely poor. She is also now free from ticks and fleas. She will be back to the vet for a review in 1 week's time, and we hope that she'll have made more progress by then.

If you are able to foster Sugar or would like to know more about fostering requirements, please email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg.

Written by: Elena


Update : Baby Sugar

Baby Sugar went in for surgery yesterday. The 3-hour surgery was successful, and she will remain at the vet for observation and recovery until the weekend. She's still not feeling well, is not eating and her spirits are very low. Poor baby.

Read her rescue story here.

3-month-old Baby Sugar was found on the fourth floor of a multi-storey carpark, with injuries on her face and body. The vet suspects that she had been hit by a motorcycle.

Just out of her surgery

She has an eternal fixator on her leg, to hold her bones in place

Her right leg was completely shattered, so the vet had no choice but to use an external fixator to provide stability during healing. Since she is a young puppy, her bones are still growing rapidly, and the vet might need to make adjustments to the external fixator as Sugar slowly heals. She will have to come back to the vet every week for a review. If all goes well, the external fixator can be removed in about 6 weeks.

So much suffering for a tiny puppy just 3 months into life

Sugar will be discharged from the vet in a few days, but she still needs post-surgery care to ensure that her wound remains clean and free from infection. She will be fed 4 meals a day, given cage rest, and restricted to minimal movement. 

If you are able to help with Sugar's vet bills, please email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg.

Sugar thanks everyone for showing her kindness, and we can’t wait to see her well and cheerful again!

Written by: Elena


Baby Sugar

It started as a regular day. We had no idea that it would be a day filled with pain and sorrow.

Today we received an email, “This is regarding a puppy I saw in the carpark at 492. Her back limbs are injured and she can't seem to walk normally. Though my fiancĂ© and I tried to keep her warm and fed her milk but she was too afraid of us. So we didn't want to trouble or hurt her. Please is there any help available as both limbs are injured. She is in pain and there are open wounds in their body. She is in deck 4B. I really hope you can help asap as I tried to find a contact number to call you but I couldn't. Thanks.

Photo we received via email

We haven’t been rescuing for some months as we have been low on funds, and we have many special needs dogs to care for, although we have been actively sterilizing strays. But when we saw this email, we instinctively felt the need to rush down and look for the puppy.

Two volunteers collected a carrier and rushed down to the car park, driving up to level 4B as the email mentioned. Thoughts ran through our minds – what was an injured puppy doing on the 4th level of a multi-storey car park? How did it get there?

Sitting in the drain for God knows how long

As we approached her, she sat up but made no effort to run. She allowed us to carry and place her in the carrier.

We headed to the vet, she lay quietly in the car, very quiet and subdued for a puppy this age. She only cried once, really loudly, when she tried to turn. We thought perhaps her spine was damaged.

Help make SUGAR smile again

Upon Vet’s examination :
Female Puppy, 3 months old
Open wounds on head and body
Extremely listless
Hind legs very little reflex 

Shattered bones

X-Ray Results :
Upper right leg bone totally shattered
Left leg swollen and very little reflexes

Conclusion :
She may have strayed from her mommy and wandered out into the housing estate to look for food. Someone may have scared her or beat her and she panicked and dashed into oncoming traffic; there were tire marks on her tiny body.

Tire marks on her body

Some questions remain :
1)    Why do humans prey on the sweet and innocent?
2)    How did she end up on the 4th level of a multi-storey car park?

Feeling extremely dejected

Sadness in her eyes

She has been warded, to be stabilized. Stay tune for more updates on sweet baby Sugar.

Watch her rescue here.