Survivor Category Finalist
My name is Plum Pudding and I’m a PAWSOME rescue dog. I’m sassy, I love cake and have an obsession with toilet rolls. Oh, and maybe I love cowpats a little too much!
But my life hasn’t always been so carefree. At six months old I was rescued from a puppy farm. Last year I also had to learn to walk again, but more about that later. When I was rescued I was emaciated, so thin you could feel my spine and every single one of my ribs. But like so many rescue dogs I still had a twinkle in my eyes and a zest for life. All I needed was a chance.
On New Years Day 2017 my new Mum adopted me and I became part of a forever family. For a rescue dog that’s all we ever want. It can be tricky when you’re first adopted, you go from having nothing and no one, to being so surrounded by love, it can be a little overwhelming! Life on a puppy farm is sad, it’s full of misery, no love, no compassion. Life, when you’re adopted, is so different, it’s incomprehensible!. Some ‘normal’ things like eating out of bowls, playing with toys, even accepting affection can be a little alien to dogs from backgrounds like mine. However, with patience, love and plenty of cuddles (oh and PLENTY of treats), you soon realise how much you love and need each other.
My life when I was adopted couldn’t have been more different to those first six months. My days were filled with cuddles, treats oh and the occasional bit of cake and toilet roll shredding too. Have I mentioned toilet rolls are one of my FAVOURITE things?! I was in a state of panic last year when I heard the pandemic may affect supply…life without toilet rolls, I don’t even want to joke about it! I also help Mum raise awareness via social media and by attending events letting people see just how amazing rescue dogs like me are, we just need the chance of a family to call our own. My big sister, Lucy, is a bit of a legend in the rescue dog world and I want to keep her legacy alive!
So you may think after my horrendous start to life, things could only improve, right?! Well, sometimes life doesn’t quite go like that and it throws you a curveball. Last June I woke up like any other day, went out to the toilet but went I managed to get myself back in the house, my back legs didn’t work anymore. I tried and tried to make them work but something was wrong, seriously wrong! After numerous vet visits/phone calls that day, I was referred for emergency surgery on my spine/discs. The prognosis wasn’t great but my Mum wanted me to have every chance to recover. Within a short time of arriving at the veterinary hospital, I was being operated on. My Mum was beside herself, we had never been away from each other. The surgery went well but I was given a very guarded prognosis and only time would tell what sort of recovery I would make.
The pandemic made everything so much more difficult, Mum couldn’t just visit me, in fact, I didn’t see her for nearly a week! (we hadn’t been apart since she adopted me!) Whilst in hospital it was my fourth birthday (great birthday, hey!) Birthday’s and Gotcha days were always a big affair in our house, but this year it was a day full of utter anxiety. My surgeon told Mum that I had stopped eating. Mum, being Mum brought over to the hospital about fifteen different types of treats, meat, my Auntie Sarah even baked me my usual birthday cake in the hope I would pick up. BUT I’m stubborn and I just wanted to go home. The vet told Mum they thought I may give up trying to recover and I needed to be discharged early to give me the best chance of recovery (catheter and all).
The very next day I was ready to be discharged early and Mum came to collect me. I have never felt so relieved. And guess what? As soon as I was home I wolfed my dinner down like I had never eaten before in my life! After that Mum continued to nurse me at home with advice from my surgeon, but it was a slow process. Immediately after my operation my back legs just dragged behind me, I had to completely learn how to walk again. I did physio at home and started going to weekly hydrotherapy sessions to help strengthen my back legs. Mum was totally in awe of me, I was suddenly physically disabled yet took on each challenge in my usual happy way, I so desperately wanted to wag my tail with happiness, but it just took me a while physically to be able to do that and show just how happy I was to have a second chance.
Nearly twelve months later and I have improved so much. I can walk, in fact, I can run, albeit a little wonky! BUT normal is overrated, right?! I’m embracing being different and I think that just made people love me even more if that’s possible! I adore people and all I want to do is say hello to absolutely everyone I meet! Mum says people could learn a lot from dogs…..our resilience, our ability to treat every day with utter joy and without looking back ….and very importantly our ability to eat cake and not worry about the calories!
I think I’m a SuperDog survivor, I hope you agree!
Love Plum Pudding xxx