Maxwell Martin (Adams = Fostering) Maxwell came to the West Highland White terrier Society (WHWTSOC) following the passing of his 90-year old owner through the thoughtfulness of a neighbor who had helped with his care. The owner had made no provisions for Maxwell in the event of the owner’s death. There were no family members who wanted to take him. The neighbor wanted to have Maxwell placed in a good home with folks who appreciated the breed and, who knew how to handle a dog who was clearly sight-impaired with cataracts on both eyes. The neighbor researched Westie Rescues and found the WHWTSOC.

Living the closest to Glastonbury where Maxwell was located, Pam & Tom Adams, with the help of Joann Philips, picked Maxwell up at the end of October of 2021. He had been well taken care of and was healthy other than having cataracts on both eyes. For years, Maxwell had not walked for more than 300 feet a day. He had no knowledge of the common commands. He now can walk close to a mile and, responds to “come” – sort of. The neighbor found Maxwell’s AKC Registration Papers and, it turns out, Maxwell was bred at the same Kennel as the Adams’ Gilligan and Lisa Regan’s Fiona. Maxwell and Gilligan were born 12 days apart in the same year.

The WHWTSOC Rescue Committee decided that Cataract Surgery would improve Maxwell’s quality of life. Maxwell was taken to the Central Hospital for Veterinary Medicine, Inc. in North Haven, CT. The initial examination showed that only one eye was a potential candidate for Cataract Surgery while the other had a detached retina that, likely, had been detached for a long time. The Pre-Op testing yielded more bad news. The left eye which originally was thought to be a candidate for surgery was found to have a detached retina as well and, glaucoma. The Vet said that the pressure in his left eye was nearly 4 times higher than it should be resulting in Maxwell feeling like he had a constant Migraine Headache. Since Maxwell was totally blind already due to the detached retinas, the decision was made to remove the eyes and replace them with prosthetic eyes. In the end, only one eye could have a prosthetic, the other had an infection behind the eye precluding the implant.

Maxwell is back home with the Adams and doing well. He moves about the house like a little white Roomba – bumping into walls or gates then, redirecting. He is getting around well and his appetite is far better than it was pre-surgery. He seems happier and, when he no longer has to wear his Cone, he will be able to resume going up and down stairs and play out in the yard. He will certainly thrive.

Funding for Maxwell’s surgery came from the generosity of the WHWTSOC Rescue Fund, Pam & Tom Adams and WestieMed.

Update November 6, 2022:

Maxwell is doing very well. Despite the fact that he is totally blind and, seems to have some hearing issues, he is moving around the house fairly easily. At times he looks like a little white bumper car but, does not hesitate to wander about with ease. He especially enjoys exploring our backyard pen, sniffing his way around and, leaving his “calling card” on the plants and fence. He will even return to the deck, negotiating the 2 steps up to the deck and, walking to the backdoor. (All of this is contained within the pen so, there is no danger of him getting lost. We are also out in the pen with him and, his brother and sister anytime they are outdoors.)

Max has been back to Dr. Dorbandt at Central Hospital for Veterinary Care twice since his surgery.  The last visit showed that Maxwell had a little dry-eye in his prosthetic right eye.  We were prescribed eye drops to solve that issue.  He gets one drop I the AM and, another in the PM.  Other than that, everything is going very well. Maxwell is in great health, eating well,  becoming a little more sociable and, wagging his tail a lot more frequently.  Maxwell has even begun playing with toys, something he never did when we first got him.

A huge Thank-you to WestieMed for the grant that allowed us to get great care and treatment for Maxwell’s Glaucoma, eye infections and detached retinas.


Pamela Aey Adams