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Woof Woof!

Hello everyone, my name is Teddy! I am a five-month-old German shepherd.

I don’t remember very much of my life before Lort Smith. I was eight weeks old when I first arrived. I had only been in the world for a couple of months and I was told that I was supposed to have a lot more energy than I had. I did feel like something wasn’t quite right. I wanted to run around and play and do all of those fun things that other, healthy puppies do, but I was always tired and it would feel really uncomfortable whenever I would try to move.

The vets at Lort Smith said that I would need some tests and treatment to get better and be able to do all of the wonderful things I was dreaming of doing. I was admitted to the intensive care unit. I wasn’t really feeling very hungry and my tummy hurt a lot. I was given fluids and pain relief too. I knew that food was good for me, but it’s hard to eat and drink when your tummy hurts so much. The pain relief did help me to be able to eat more than I had been so I was very grateful for that.

I was vomiting and I had haemorrhagic diarrhoea. The vet who looked at me when I was first admitted was worried because they thought they could feel an intussusception in my tummy. I didn’t know what this meant at the time, but I was told that it is means my intestines were inflamed, that some of my intestine had slipped out of its normal place and had folded. 

The vets said that an intussusception is very serious and if it is not fixed I may die! I had only been in this world a short time and there was so much that I wanted to do. I didn’t want to have to say goodbye so soon. I have the same hopes and dreams that all puppies have. I didn’t understand why this had happened to me. It didn’t seem fair. Even though I was sad that this was happening to me, I knew that I was in the best possible place to get better. Everyone at Lort Smith was just so kind to me and I felt very safe and cared for in their hands.

The vets told me that I would need to have surgery to fix my tummy. I was less than three months old at the time, and I hadn’t even been to puppy school yet! But I trusted my friends at Lort Smith.

The vets put me to sleep for the surgery and when they had a look inside my tummy they found a large intussusception, about fifteen centimetres in length, at the ‘ileocecal junction’ (apparently this is a muscle valve that separates the small and large intestines). After they found it they did an ‘end to end anastomosis’. This means that they removed a bad, or ‘necrotic’, part of the intussusception, and they made a new connection between different parts of my intestine. I don’t know about you, but that all sounds very complicated to me and I would probably have to go to puppy school for a very long time to learn how to do it myself!

The surgery hurt a lot, and because it was in my tummy, I still didn’t really feel like eating afterwards. The humans at Lort Smith very much wanted me to eat, to help me grow healthy and big and strong, but it was tough to. After my surgery I was given medication to help make me better and the humans continued to give me fluids to make me stronger. I even got to try chicken for the first time too! Whilst I liked the taste of this new food I couldn’t eat as much as I’d have liked to because my tummy still needed to get better first.

Even though the surgery had helped a lot, I still wasn’t 100% better. The vets found that I had ‘coccidiosis’, which is a parasitic disease of the intestinal tract, which caused me to have diarrhoea, to vomit, to feel tired and for my tummy to hurt. It would especially hurt when I needed to go to the toilet. A few weeks after my surgery, some results came back that tested positive for ‘canine parvovirus’, ‘cryptosporidium’ and ‘campylobacter’ infections. I did start to wonder if I would ever be better. It felt like no matter how brave I was, I would keep getting bad news. I knew that I would have to be braver for a bit longer and that Lort Smith would help me do this.

While I recovered, I stayed at the home of a lovely human and slowly but surely, I started to feel better. I was told that the wound from my surgery was healing well and I had my ‘sutures’ removed - I even started to gain weight! It really felt like I had turned a corner and everything was starting to get better. For the first time in a long time, I felt that everything was going to be ok.

But my tough time wasn’t quite over yet. One day I was trying to go to the toilet and it really hurt. I started yelping loudly and running around because I just wanted the pain to stop. I still wasn’t completely mended, and the human I was staying with took me back to Lort Smith so the vets could help me again. They took some ‘x-rays’ and said that there were no obvious blockages. They suggested that I eat small meals and have extra fibre in my food. I was given probiotics and I even started to be weaned onto puppy food. I needed to take things slowly and, over time, I started to get better.

I really liked the people who were looking after me at their house, but I could never have dreamed of what would come next. I was told that these humans had decided that I could stay with them. Not just for a little bit of time, but for always! I felt like the luckiest puppy in the world.

Not only did Lort Smith fix all of the things that were broken with me on the inside, they found me a new family. My lady human works at Lort Smith! They told me that she is the chief executive officer,- which basically means “the big boss” - and is the person who helps all of the other amazing humans at Lort Smith to save so many animals every single day. I couldn’t believe that she chose to adopt me, happiness is an understatement!

I feel like I have been on such a long journey to get here. In just a few short months I have gone from being a puppy who was broken on the inside, and who didn’t have much hope for a happy and healthy future, to a very different dog now; at five months old I feel so much happier and stronger. I love to be outside, to run and play and I’m curious about everything. There is just so much to see and do in the world, and thanks to Lort Smith I will get to see so much more of it than I ever imagined possible.

It cost Lort Smith $5,600 for all of my surgery and treatment and to fix my broken insides. It costs thousands and thousands of dollars just to keep Lort Smith running every single day. With no ongoing funds provided by the government, donors like you are absolutely essential to ensure they can continue to save lives.

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24 Villiers Street, North Melbourne VIC 3051

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