Our Beagle World Forums banner

1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
32,140 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was contacted by a vet that did Summer's knee rehab. The SPCA near them sent a young male beagle with a megaesophagus to their hospital for care. The dog (currently nicknamed "Ralphie") came in very under weight (the term "bag of bones" was used) and has aspiration pneumonia. They are trying to save him. As of now, he is termed un-adoptable until they can stabilize him, get him to keep down his food and gain weight. They are currently running tests and and experimenting with different textures of food to see what he can keep down.

She contacted me to see if I knew anyone who would be interested in fostering (or possibly later) adopting a high risk, high maintenance beagle. When I asked my wife, she said "We don't foster, we adopt." and we are seriously considering it. We currently have two beagles who are high maintenance (Murphy, 11 yrs - partially paralyzed, epileptic, cancer survivor, with early stage leukemia, and Summer, 5 yrs - double rear ACL/miniscus repair). So hardship cases are nothing new to us. But this one truly concerns us. I contacted our regular vet. She said if anyone can deal with "Ralphie"'s issues, we can.

They will call me in a week to ten days to let me know where "Raphie" stands.

If he makes it and becomes adoptable, I have a number of issues I need to get around if we need do adopt him.

- How do you feed a megaesophagus dog when you have two others that eat normally (treats included)?

- How long after eating does he need to be monitored to prevent regurgitaion?

- Summer & Murphy are fed once a day (supper) and given treays 3x a day. How do you get around giving to two and not the one?

I will be taking some toys to him tomorrow since he has no family to speak of. I will not be seeing him. It will only make things harder it things take a turn for the worse.

What do you think? Are we crazy for even thinking about adopting him? We were not looking for another beagle, but we may be his last chance.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,646 Posts
I don't think its crazy at all to adopt this poor baby. You seem very experienced with medical issues and I think most of the problems could be worked out. Your generosity makes me feel guilty that my beagle is not a rescue. Although, if I am ever in a position to get a second it definitely will be, especially after reading these boards and seeing how many need good homes.
I don't have a lot of dog experience but I am very experienced with rescued cats. When there are feeding issues like diet or aggression over food, I feed in separate rooms.Maybe you could make that work at feeding and treat time? I will pray for you and this poor dog, I hope he can recover and come home to you. I am sure the more experienced people here will have good suggestions for you.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,646 Posts
Right after I posted this I wanted to know more about megaesophagus so I did a search on megaesophagus on dogs. Have you found the Yahoo support group for owners of dogs with megaesophagus? There is a lot of information as well as directions to build a feeding chair for the dog. Maybe you could find some useful suggestions there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,335 Posts
Joe ... you and Fran are great beagle parents and with your volumes of medical experience I have no doubt that you can figure out the logistics of caring for Ralphie.

Sammy and I will be saying beagly Christmas prayers for Ralphie in hopes that Santa grants his Christmas wish of good health and a new forever home !!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
32,140 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Joe, all I know about megaesophagus is what I've just looked up on the web. So, I can't offer any advice although I agree that if anyone's capable of caring for this baby you are. It's more difficult having dogs with medical issues, but the rewards are great.

As for feeding when there're other dogs, as you know there are 4 dogs living here. We feed ours in separate areas which keeps the peace. As for treats for 2 and not the other, all I can suggest is that Murphy and Summer be given their treats out of sight of Ralphie.

Thank you for considering taking Ralphie. Please keep us posted on his progress.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,869 Posts
Joe,

The gift that you and your wife would be giving this beagle is so tremendous!

I know that you don't need me to ask you if you two have thought about if this is something that you can handle...the extra medical care and trips to the vet.

What procedures are the vets doing now. Supportive? Can megaesophagus be cured with surgery?

Why can he not have treats? Is there a "special" treat that he might be able to have when Summer and Murphy have theirs? Feeding in separate rooms my be the best option but it may take this little baby a bit longer to eat and then digest. Maybe crate training just for meals would be an option.

Please keep the forum posted. You all are quite an inspiration.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,715 Posts
Quote:Originally posted by Murphy's Dad:
What do you think? Are we crazy for even thinking about adopting him?
Crazy? No, Joe. I think you and your wife are very loving and courageous people! Being willing to open your heart and home to another special needs dog shows thtat you have the true spirit of Christmas!
I have no answers for your specific questions. I'm not even sure what megaesophagus is, but it sounds very serious! Search your hearts and you will know the right thing to do for Ralphie and your family! Good luck, and God bless you for wanting to help poor little Ralphie.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,869 Posts
What do you think? Are we crazy for even thinking about adopting him? We were not looking for another beagle, but we may be his last chance.

I just read this last part of your post.

Nobody will think you are crazy if you do adopt him.

More importantly, nobody will think you are bad people if you decide that you can not adopt him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,005 Posts
I think that what you're doing is amazing. I was almost in tears reading your post. You're not crazy for wanting to give this little guy a good home, and I agree that no one would think less of you if you decided not to adopt him. Our thoughts and prayers will be with Ralphie. Good luck, I know you and your wife will make the right decision.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,729 Posts
Oh Joe and Fran, you are the greatest beagle parent on earth!
Megaesophgus, such a big word, must be very serious, I do not even kown what it means.
I'm sure you can do a great job, it does require a commitment to it. You are taking care of Murphy and Summer, taking care of another high maintenance dog might take away a big chunk of your quality time. Maybe a little redo in your tight schedule and see if you can squeeze this little poor guy in. /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/frown.gif
What ever happen to him, he has been abused?

Charlie mom
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
32,140 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Joe: I had never heard of this condition so did a little reading on the web -- the yahoo group that Jassy mentioned sounds like a good resource for support, questions and also instructions on how to build a "Bailey" feeding chair (named after a dog with this condition). If you use the chair, that would avoid problems with other dogs eating at the same time in same room. Hopefully, this pup makes it through his current bout of pneumonia. That sounds like the most common concurrent condition due to aspirated food. If he makes it into your home, I know that you will provide a loving and supportive home. Please keep us posted.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
862 Posts
I haven't a clue what megaesophagus really is as of now, but all I know and strongly feel is that you and your wife are the ones for poor Ralphie. In the meantime, I'll pray for little Ralphie and for everything to work out favorably for all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
807 Posts
Joe, are you and Fran crazy? If you are, I pray that I always associate with crazy people!! Paws are crossed around here and prayers are going up that this babe makes it and is able to come to your forever home for some much deserved loving. Keep us posted. Hugs to the whole family, Julie
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,410 Posts
Joe, caring for two "perfectly healthy" hounds is a tough enough job to begin with...but a third disabled hound? (If you have that kind of spare time...more power to you)! But beware of the slippery slope that my former "cat-lady" entered!
The latest news is very sketchy...but their current property is under foreclosure as well! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/eek.gif (So she & her new boyfriend will move to a new state)! Since I doubt that you are insane as she is /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif You will make the right choice! I have been confronted with such tough choices as well, but Goober & Homer are all I can handle @ this time! Especially when Ted & Claudia go on a short trip & need me to care for their 4 hounds! :evilgrin:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,098 Posts
If anyone here can handle a dog with special needs, it would be your family. However, having two dogs with special needs already means you've sacrificed so much. If you decide not to adopt, I for one would still nominate you for pup-parents-of-the-decade. :thumbup:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,410 Posts
Ditto to Deb,(you are already doing the Lords work with Murphy)! Don,t spread yourself too thin!
Devote the time you have to the elder one while reassuring the younger one & "said one" will be the "elder one" "before you realize that time has come"! Or as I would say..."quality, not quantity" is where you will get more hounds "pulling you towards heaven" than those on the "rainbow bridge". Pop & I would like to believe that Skipper, Snapper & Duke are there to greet us...
(how could God deny such unconditional love?)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
702 Posts
I just read this and I'm so impressed by you and your wife for just considering adopting this poor boy! I just pray that he survives and gets as healthy as possible. I, too, never heard of this condition.

It takes special people to take on such a complicated case -- I'm sure your hearts will discern the right decision.

My mother, God rest her, always told us kids that whenever we got a new pup the only way he/she would ever leave was "feet first". I have always followed her dictate and am proud of it.

I wish you and the baby boy all good things and many prayers for a happy outcome. :angel:

:heart: Monica and Daisy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
228 Posts
Joe-
I am no expert on MegaE. But I do know some people that are very experienced with it. It is manageable! You can do this! Mostly you feed your pet slowly standing up. There are many wonderful sites that can teach you what to do. I actually thought Spencer had MegaE. He developed Aspiration Pheumonia last Thanksgiving and vet throught it was MegaE. After a negative Barium X-ray that was dropped from the diagnosis, it was caused by vomitting in his sleep while having a seizure at the same time.
It is manageable and you can do it!
Let me know if you want some contact information!
Good luck and please let us know what you decide to do!
Bless your heart for saving this poor boy.
Becky and Spencer and Bagel the foster beag!
 
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Top