Luna - WestieMed Grant Recipient January 2019


Luna joined our family in July of 2018. We met her and instantly fell in love with her calm charm and sweet disposition. She came into our lives somewhat unexpectantly after we lost our dog Peetie of twelve years. We stopped into our local animal shelter MADAAC. They are the first stop for stray or abandoned animals before other local institutions. Our family had considered adopting another family member and we decided to stop by to see how their process worked. They told us Luna had just been brought in the night before as a stray. She was on the thin side and had a nasty ear infection. We hesitantly decided to meet her as we weren’t sure if we were emotionally ready for another dog. Peetie was a very important piece of us. However, it is a decision I am so happy we made.

When she entered the small six by six-foot space we instantly smelled a strong rancid scent. It was her ear infection, it was really nasty and looked as if it had been going on for months and months. The whole left side of her head was brown with discharge from her ear. They told us she was most likely around three, she wasn’t spayed and wasn’t chipped. She immediately jumped onto our laps for attention. It was wonderful. Luna had just been brought in the night before, so there was a five-day adoption hold for her. But, we knew we had to go for it.

Five long days passed and Luna has still had not been spoken for. Who wouldn’t claim such a special baby? They scheduled her spay and we could take her home! We were told her ear would be cleaned thoroughly and we made arrangements with our family veterinarian to start treating the infection. All was falling into place until we went to pick Luna up from her procedure.

It became very clear it was not just an ear infection in Luna’s ear, but something worse. She had growths all deep within her ear preventing the infection from escaping. This made it evident she would require more than antibiotics and most likely surgery. MADAAC gave us a choice of not adopting Luna. But, it never crossed our minds to give up on her as her previous owner must have done. She was already a member of our family and we were bonded, for life.

After getting spayed, we took Luna back home to get her used to her new home and family. She was quiet, sweet, and gentle. Everything we could’ve hoped. But, her body language suggested that she may have been mistreated in her life. She cowered in fear, and after making a mess in the house, she ran underneath a bed to hide. We Immediately took her for grooming and to our vet for care.  We were hoping for a non-surgical solution for her ear.  The medications were not working.  We had a culture done to be sure the correct medications were being used for the type of infection she had.  We finally got the right stuff but as soon as the rounds of medication were complete, the infection came back.  She has been on antibiotics and prednisone since July.  All of the Vets said the same thing.  Prolonged steroid and anti-biotic use would be hard on her system and it would shorten her life.

Day by day, Luna has warmed up to us and I know she loves us all just as much as we love her.  She is so delicate, gentle and sweet to everyone.  She plays with children, loves to cuddle, and loves to give kisses.  She is a true companion. However, her ear issue has only become worse. And she will have to have her entire ear canal removed.

With the help of WestieMed, Luna will have her TECA surgery in January of 2019 so she can continue to live joyously and without infection with her new family.


Update January 26, 2019

Luna - WestieMed Recipient January 2019
Luna – WestieMed Recipient January 2019

Luna had her surgery on the 21st and came home on the 23rd.  She is doing well!! 

She has a blinking issue that should resolve with time.  We have to put an ointment in her eye to prevent ulcers.  She should get her stitches out in a week!

Thanks again!  Without you and your organization, this would not have been possible.


Update August 30, 2019

Luna - WestieMed Recipient August Update2019
Luna -August Update 2019

Yes, everything is fine.  We are so grateful for your help!

Luna has definitely found her forever family. It was love at first sight and it has grown with each passing day.

Her ear surgeon did a great job and she only had partial facial paralysis for about a month. We had to put drops in her eyes four times a day to deter any eye issues. She has adjusted well too.

It was evident when we brought her home that she had been abused. She would cower and got complete stiff when we picked her up. She isn’t afraid as much now, although she is still skittish at times.

In the year that we have had her, she had an accident two times!!!! It was our fault for misreading her. She is really good about letting us know.

She is madly in love with my college-aged son. They have an amazing bond. My 85-year-old mother moved in and Luna has a constant companion all day long.

I can’t thank you all enough for the help. Luna would have had to be on antibiotics for the rest of her life and would have most likely had to be put to sleep eventually when the antibiotics stopped working.

She is honestly the sweetest little girl we could have hoped for.


Update December 12, 2019

Everything is great with little Luna. Her little ear healed well and her facial paralysis went away. We are madly in love with her and I am pretty sure, she is madly in love with us too.

She is having a little issue with her back knee but it doesn’t seem to hurt her at this point. It just moves a little funny when she walks.

She does have some emotional baggage that has not lifted yet. She still cowers and if you touch her back she sort of sinks in a petrified manner. It is so sad. I absolutely cannot understand why or how anyone could harm an animal no less this gentle girl.

Attached is a picture of her and my son. Thanks again for all that you do. You saved little Luna’s life!

Happy Holidays!!

Brenda and Luna

George Bailey - WestieMed Grant Recipient June 2018

George Bailey

On December 16, 2017, I drove to Houston to rescue a Westie brother and sister.

We named the girl Charlotte Rose and decided to name the boy George Bailey after the film “It’s a Wonderful Life”.

I later learned that George had a severe ear infection and will need surgery. The doctor, or dog-tor, feels that has infection was neglected for a very long time, which contributed to his being deaf.

While he also doesn’t bark, he has no trouble making his needs known. He is the sweetest and most gentle dog. George has adjusted quickly and happily to his permanent home. 

It’s difficult to know how much pain this infection causes him. With WestieMed’s help, George will be able to have the TECA surgery he needs.


Update July 2019

George Bailey experienced complications from his surgery. He passed to Rainbow Bridge the day after surgery.

Bocci - WestieMed Grant Recipient July 2017


In January of this year, we were contacted by Bocci’s owner. She had gotten Bocci as a puppy and he was fine and healthy for years. Then he began having ear infections. She said she worked with the vet for a few years but the infections just kept coming back. Her vet told her the only way to treat him at this point was an ear ablation surgery. She had a baby and was a single mother with a new baby and other children to care for. She contacted us for assistance because she could no longer afford the cost to continue treating him. 

Bocci came to us on January 29, 2017. Our first intake exam confirmed the ear infection. That vet referred us to a specialist, who also talked about the ear ablation. Unfortunately, the person that had agreed to foster Bocci was having a difficult time caring for him so we moved him to his current foster home. The distance between the foster homes required us to take him to yet another vet who really felt that they might be able to help him without the surgery. Sadly, it didn’t work and we need the surgery to help finally clear up the infection.

Aggie Latyak

Update January 24, 2018

Bocci - WestieMed Grant Recipient July 2017
Bocci – WestieMed Grant Recipient

Thank you again to WestieMed for the help for Bocci.

He is doing so well now. The pain he was always in from the chronic ear infections is gone and he is enjoying life again. The surgery went very well, though it left him with a droopy ear, which makes him even cuter.

Unfortunately, due to his advanced age at twelve years, we’ve had no interested adopters, but he loves his foster home.

He’s having a good life.

Thank you!


Chloe - WestieMed Grant Recipient September 2016


Chloe is a typical 6-year old Westie with plenty of Westitude, she has the most charming prance, head held high and a proud gait, we call it “going to the White House”. She comes from an incredibly loving family that has had her since she was a puppy and due to life changes they made the heartbreaking selfless decision to surrender her to rescue so that she can have access to the medical care she needs and be in a more stable environment.

When she was one and a half she began to scratch her ears and cry, the vet put her on antibiotics and Prednisone along with ear drops. For the next four years, Chloe experienced recurrent ear infections. As the vet explained, long-standing ear infections can result in irreversible damage to the ear canal which is exactly what happened with Chloe. Due to chronic inflammation, the ear canal became thickened and turned into bone. As a result, Chloe’s infection cannot be treated with medication.

By the age of five Chloe’s ears completely closed; for anyone who is not familiar with this the only way to describe it is to say her ears looked more like a belly button. However, even though her ears were closed, the infections continued, resulting in the formation of an abscess in her cheek that needed to be opened and drained. The vet informed her mum that Chloe needed a double ear ablation- surgery in which the diseased ear canals are removed entirely.

With the help of WestieMed Chloe is getting the surgery that she needs. Prior to surgery, Chloe has been put on a strict diet – prescription food, water and no treats (poor girl no treats!) The vet said that potentially she could have severe allergies adding to the inflammation in her ears. Until we can narrow allergies she will not even be receiving oral heartworm meds because of the flavoring. 

Prognosis is very good post-surgery. The hope is that Chloe is going to feel like a “new dog” and might be acting more like a puppy again. The vet said that typically a dog that has chronic deep-seated ear infections like Chloe will be much less active than a normal dog because they do not feel well. Once she receives the surgery infections are most often times cured permanently.

Update April 12, 2017

From her adopters/new forever family:

She has settled into our household and is a wonderful, playful, funny and in every way great dog. Our household now includes my son’s rescue dog “Moose.” Chloe and Moose are BFFs – they watch out the windows together, take a long morning walk together and usually race out to the back yard together.

She had a dental cleaning a couple of weeks ago – she didn’t need any extractions just cleaning. There was a small mass in an area of her gums which the vet removed and sent for biopsy. He didn’t expect any serious problem and turned out, fortunately, there wasn’t.

She is really comfortable in her new home and not as needy of me as she was in the first months. She may snuggle up for a nap. She still likes to hop up on the back of a chair or sofa and nap right beside one of her humans who happens to be watching TV or reading a book or whatever.

She is great with people, including visitors – no snapping, growling or any kind of aggressive behavior. We will soon be going to the Cape more often so I will stop by to see Kathryn and so Kathryn can visit Chloe. Oh, I meant to mention – she is one of the lucky 10% of dogs who have had ear ablations but still have some hearing. She turns towards sound and responds to a call of her name. She also sits and waits for her meals and sits for a treat.

Pasha - WestieMed Grant Recipient April 2016


Pasha started her journey as a foster in March 2013.  She was very withdrawn, three kgs plus overweight, unfit, not socialized, had a severe yeast infection, typical Westie skin problems, wispy and thin hair all over her body, her back was dipped with the weight as she had a big round belly! She also had a severe bacterial infection in her ears called Pseudomonas. Her ears were in a terrible state, the skin inside the flap was very dry and split and the ear canal was nowhere to be seen. She didn’t bark and, as she was withdrawn, she spent her days finding places to hide and staying there until you managed to coax her out, usually for a treat! She had also been on a high dose of steroids. 

When she came to live her first foster mum, she was taken off the steroids immediately, switched to a raw feeding diet and saw a homeopathic/holistic vet. Everything was going to be natural from here on in for Pasha.

Her weekly routine consisted of baths every 2/3 days with a natural shampoo and every other day her ears were cleaned with Malecetic Aural and a pinch of Thornit powder.

As the days and weeks went by she grew in confidence. Initially, she didn’t even know how to walk on grass; her daily walk with two other rescue Westies helped build her confidence. She lost weight and started to develop a little ‘Westietude’.

We were following Pasha’s journey on Facebook. In June 2013 we lost our little Westie, Poppy, and we were heartbroken. We made the decision we had to get another little Westie so we made inquiries about fostering Pasha.  We met Pasha twice and we got the wonderful news we could foster her.

Towards the end of July 2013, Pasha came to live with us as a long-term foster. We continued with the raw feeding, weekly routine of baths and ear treatment and gave her plenty of exercises.  Her skin improved, her hair grew back and she became a happy, contented dog. Despite a setback in December 2013, she continued her recovery until April 2014 when she began to have problems with her ears.

Unfortunately, her ear condition did not improve, even with a course of antibiotics and weekly ear cleaning. As the seasons changed she picked up four ear infections. We had blood tests undertaken, skin scrapings to check for allergies and biopsies taken which showed she was resistant and sensitive to most antibiotics! The decision was taken, after lengthy consultation to undertake a double Total Ear Canal Ablation (TECA), which has left her completely deaf. Whilst her vet was performing the operation, he discovered cysts in both ears, one of which was so big and pussy it was pressing on skull causing a lot of pain.  She had also become quite aggressive; we believe this was a result of what was happening with her ears.

As a result of losing her hearing, she lost all her confidence, withdrew into herself again and started to isolate herself again. She didn’t want to go out for a walk and was very hard to bathe without her becoming aggressive. So much so that when she went to be groomed, she became a ‘psycho’ dog when she sensed the clippers so she is unable to be groomed without being under sedation. We could completely understand this. To go from not hearing very well and in constant pain, to then waking up, unable to hear and in even more pain, her whole world had been turned upside down. 

Her journey to recovery started, which wasn’t easy. She was very aggressive, withdrew even more and would snap at our other rescue Westie, Hamish, for no reason at all. We were not going to give up on her though. We kept remembering Pash as she was before her ear problems and we knew she’d come back to us with time as a friend whose dog had the same operation had taken two years to return to herself. Patience and determination is all we needed, and we had lots of that!

We had a behaviorist come in to help us and gradually she started to trust again. 

At the end of November 2014, Pasha took a turn for the worse. Her blood sugars dropped dramatically, her legs went all wobbly and we had to give her glucose to bring the blood sugars back up. She kept falling over, her eyes went really gooey and she had a blank look in her eyes if that makes sense. Her skin went really dry and her hair was falling out whenever she shook or scratched. We actually thought we were going to lose her or have to have her put to sleep. She started a low dose of steroids which we really didn’t want to do considering her past with steroids but we had no choice. This was the last resort; if this didn’t work there would be no other choice but to put her to sleep. We were over the moon as she responded really well, her eyes became bright, and she started playing again. She wanted to be cuddled, we were so happy to see her like this. 

She has just had a groom where she has had a full coat of fur underneath and it is healthy fur; this the first one. There is just one patch on her leg which she will not leave alone, licking and chewing it when she feels stressed. She barks now, will sit at the back window and watch out into the garden and the trees beyond; she loves watching the birds and animal programs on TV. She is loving her walks and really finding a zest for life again. We still have the aggression every now and then but this is more of a warning than wanting to bite us. 

Pasha is a regular visitor to our lovely vet Neil Coode at Brookmead Vets in Cranleigh.  She has been to see him two to three times a month, on average, and sometimes weekly. Unfortunately due to all her problems we cannot insure Pasha.

She has been battling for more than a year with a constant ear infection. She is still undergoing treatment as its refusing to heal. She has been on and off antibiotics and now antifungal treatment throughout the year. She has started a course K-Laser therapy which is a treatment that helps promote healthy tissues following an operation, resulting in a quicker healing process. We have just completed one course of K-Laser therapy and have two more planned.  

We are so thankful for WestieMed helping Pasha with her treatment.  Without your funding, she would not be able to have this treatment.  From the bottom of our hearts, thank you.

All our love,
Debbie, Kevin, Pasha and Hamish

Update June 20, 2016

Pasha - WestieMed Grant Recipient April 2016
Pasha – WestieMed Grant Recipient

Following the initial K-Laser the ear flap really started to heal. We went on holiday to Scotland and we all had a great time. Pasha loved it and did lots of investigating round the locks and the woods.

We came back and all seemed OK. Her ear then had a flare-up. Back to the vets we went. Another course of K-Laser.  Our vet has since been in contact with the lady from K-Laser who has been in contact with HQ in the States.  They have devised a specific program for Pasha called Deep Healing which is every other day treatment for ten days and twice a week for two weeks, then to review and see how the ear is getting on.  She also has another infection in the ear which she is on a ten-day course of antibiotics for.  Following all this, Neil, her vet, and so are we, are really hoping this will kick the infection so her ear can finally heal. What Neil wants to avoid is further surgery as its not a surgery he can do and Pash would have to be referred to a specialist. He really doesn’t want to do this as he feels it would be more harmful to her and possibly dangerous. We’re hoping and sending her healing that this latest course of action will work.

I have also attached some more pictures as I realized I’d sent collages of pictures – these are to follow.

Thank you once again for your help, without your lovely donation, Pasha wouldn’t be able to have this treatment, thank you.

Best wishes,
Debbie, Kevin, Pasha & Hamish x

Update May 20, 2017

Pasha - WestieMed Grant Recipient April 2016
Pasha – WestieMed Grant Recipient

I thought I’d send you an update on how Pasha is getting. OMG, how she has changed. 

November last year she had a healing session from a friend. She asked us to keep her collar off in the house and only use it for walking her. Well, that change has worked, her ear is completely healed and she is trusting herself that she doesn’t hurt and wow, she has changed. She’s happy, she’s playing, she’s trying to get her stepbrother Hamish to play as well and when their on their walks she will often now run around like a headless chicken, she’s loving life.  It’s so lovely to see her happy, she makes us laugh and cry.

We just want to say another massive massive thank you to WestieMed for your kind donation, without it she wouldn’t have been able to fight the infection and have the laser treatment, a combination of this and taking the collar off have really made the difference, thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

I’ll send some pictures of our recent trip to Scotland. We all climbed up Cairngorm mountain, a total of 1600 feet, we thought it would tire them out, oh no, they both had a snooze and then wanted to go for a walk.

Thank you again.

Debbie, Kevin, Pasha and Hamish

Update September 3, 2017

Pasha - WestieMed Grant Recipient April 2016
Pasha – WestieMed Grant Recipient

I’m afraid I’m writing with sad news. On Monday 21st August, we had to say goodbye to Pasha. On Monday 7th August she had a stroke, she was recovering really well, and we were informed if she recovered over the next two weeks she would be ok.

In the second week, we were given the all-clear to take her out for a walk in her stroller, she’d also pulled her ACL. She had a lovely walk that Sunday and enjoyed the pub. That night she had another stroke and was in a bad way, we made that horrible decision. Her vet came, agreed with us and also wonders if she might have had a brain tumor, we’d been thinking that for over six months.

She’s home with us now in her heart casket and I have her fur & ashes in a heart pendant.

Thank you so very much to WestieMed for your help when we adopted her.

Lots of love,
Debbie, Kevin and Hamish

Betsy - WestieMed Grant Recipient February 2016


Hi, my name is Sharon and I’d like to tell you about a gorgeous little Westie named Betsy.

I previously adopted Sally (formally Phylan), a Westie, from Many Tears Animal Rescue and occasionally checked out the MTAR website to see how other Westies were doing. 

I noticed a very small scared-looking Westie called Betsy on the website that wasn’t up for adoption because MTAR was trying to sort her ear infection/abscess out before she became available. She was an ex breeding bitch that was not treated for her ear infections, which lead to a blocked ear canal and a very large abscess. Betsy needed a major operation called a Total Ear Canal Ablation but the vet based near Many Tears Animal Rescue in Wales was unfortunately unable to carry out this vital operation on her because of the complications of the infection, abscess and the pain she would have to endure during. He suggested that she be put down

Sally Wallace, a long-standing fosterer for MTAR took on Betsy in the hope her local vet would be able to do the operation. Unfortunately, he was unable to carry out the TECA as he thought it would be far too painful for Betsy to be put through. The only solution left was to put Betsy up for adoption on the understanding that she may only have days, weeks or months to live and to have a final chance of as much pain-free peace and quiet, in a loving home, as possible. 

I happened to check the MTAR website a few days after she was put up for adoption and my heart went out to her instantly. Reading her prognosis cemented my resolve to give her the best possible end to an otherwise neglected and painful life. I have two other Westies and they instantly took to Betsy when I visited Sally to collect Betsy.  The very next day I took Betsy to my local vets called Newnham Court Veterinary Hospital to register her and have her ear checked over. Blood tests were taken and it turned out the infection in her ear was a nasty one (MRSA) that is resistant to all antibiotics bar one, which is injectable only. On hearing this I thought it would be all over for her but it turned out this practice had a specialist in ear complications such as this one. Martin Smith BVSc MMedVet (Med) CertVD GPCert (EM&S) MRCV is the specialist that saw Betsy and confirmed that he could do the operation. Because of this nasty bacteria that has infected Betsy’s ear, it would make the operation particularly difficult to do, due to removing as much of the infection as possible. There was also the possibility of facial nerve damage during the operation because of the very large abscess, scar tissue and possible growth around the facial nerves. The nerve damage would be cosmetic only and would not affect her quality of life. The ear canal had to be removed because the ear was completely blocked and the infection was trapped inside the inner ear and had burst through the inner ear wall to below the ear lobe causing the very large abscess. 

The initial quote for the TECA operation was about £2500 including medicines required. She needed the operation ASAP so, on the advice of Mrs. Sally Wallace, I set about starting a Go Fund Me page. With the help of the Westie community on Facebook, Sir Hamish McTavish Westie Rescue Fund, Westies Rescued UK and many other very generous people the donations to date have reached £2855. The vet’s bills have so far totaled £5,450 due to her staying in the hospital for two weeks following the operation trying to fight the MRSA. The MRSA infection has been eradicated but she has another infection that’s taken its place. Luckily this is treatable with antibiotics at home. She also recently needed a small piece of the ear lobe tissue removed because it wasn’t healing as expected. It’s been so painful for her to have her ear flushed clean that she’s been sedated for each one.

With the vet bills mounting each day I had to ask for help from WestieMed. I wasn’t guaranteed funding so when I received the email saying that the Board of Directors had approved funding and the full amount available, I broke down in floods of tears. I am eternally grateful to WestieMed for helping me to help Betsy.

I was expecting not to have Betsy for very long but it turned out she had a chance of recovery and a possible fulfilling life ahead of her. This is meant to be for Betsy. Her journey had bought her to one of the very few vets in the country that was willing and able to carry out this type of operation with the complications and increase her chance of survival. (Nothing was guaranteed).

Betsy is now recovering at home and her ear still has a way to go in the healing process but this has not stopped her happy sweet nature and she sure loves her hugs and kisses.   

I owe a great debt of gratitude to so many loving and generous people. Thank you to all who have helped Betsy and all the other Rescue Westies out there around the world. 


Update November 17, 2016

Sorry I’ve not got back to you. I’m in the middle of moving from Kent to Somerset, starting a new job and it’s hectic. 

Despite all the vet’s efforts, Besty didn’t make it. She went in for an operation to open her up further because the infection just kept coming back and the drugs were being changed to tackle it regularly. We ran out of options.

When she was opened up, it was found that the infection had spread down her neck and under her chin to her other ear. I got a call while she was on the operation table and still under anesthetic to say it would be kinder to put her to sleep. It was devastating but the right thing to do for her. I cried my heart out for her. 

I can honestly say I’ve never met a dog like her and no other dog will ever match her. I miss her so much every day. 

Thank you for your help and I’m so sorry that she didn’t make it. Without your help, I would not have been able to help her as much as I possibly could. We really did take it to the last hope. 

Thank you from the bottom of my heart. 

I will be donating in the future, just very tight on money due to losing job. xxx

Sharon Elliott

Rory - WestieMed Grant Recipient December 2015


On September 15th, I was contacted by a local veterinarian who had been caring for Rory, an eight to ten-year-old Westie for the last couple of years. Rory suffered from severe allergies, skin issues and extremely serious ear infections, which she had been doing her best to treat.

Unfortunately, Rory’s owners were a special needs couple who were incapable of following through with the home care and meds that Rory needed between vet visits. They did not understand that some of his skin problems were the result of allergies to grain and were feeding him a very low-quality dollar store dog food that was aggravating his problems. Since it was clear that his owners, despite how much they loved him, were incapable of providing the daily care needed to help Rory to recover and live pain-free, the vet recommended humane euthanasia because Rory was in so much agony and his parents agreed. Then she called me and asked if we could rescue and help Rory if his parents would agree to surrender him to us. After discussing it with Gloria, we agreed to take him, and I agreed to foster him since I had experience with both skin and ear issues.

When we got Rory, he was in pretty bad shape and in a great deal of pain. His ears were so badly infected that they were bleeding, very swollen and extremely painful; the prolonged infections have destroyed most of his hearing. His skin was infected and had oozing lesions, and he was significantly underweight. Several large, painful interdigital cysts on his paws made walking agonizing for him. His eyes were inflamed and infection had clouded his lenses. It took two months, lots of meds, lots of medicated baths, a diet change and lots of trips to the vet, but we finally got Rory’s ear infection and the accompanying swelling to a point where the vet could actually see inside the ear. He discovered a tumor that was complicating the infection and after consultation with the specialist, it was determined that surgery was required as soon as possible. The specialist recommended a Total Ear Canal Ablation.

Rory has made a lot of progress in the last two and a half months. His fur is coming back, his skin is getting pinker, the interdigital cysts have resolved and he is back up to a healthy weight. However, his ears are still problematic and painful. Rory is a sweet, lovable little guy who is learning how to cuddle and every day he makes progress. He deserves a life that is free of pain. Although he has challenges, he maintains a sweet and loving disposition in spite of the constant pain he endures.

The grant from WestieMed for his surgery will be a miracle for this sweet boy and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. I can’t wait to write the follow up after he has begun to heal and we see his personality blossom as he begins to enjoy a life without pain.

Josie Smith
New York Westie Rescue

Update December 16, 2015

Rory - WestieMed Grant Recipient December 2015
Rory – WestieMed Grant Recipient

Rory is doing extremely well after the TECA (Total Ear Canal Ablation) which is such an invasive major surgery. There is no redness or draining at the surgical site, just a little swelling, which is less every day.

He is almost back to his normal “Happy Feet” self and I can see his energy levels increase every day. He really got through the surgery very, very well and is doing better than anyone, including the vet, expected.

He goes back to see Dr. Brown on the 23rd to have the sutures removed and we expect an excellent report. He is doing so well, in fact, that I’m going to try stopping the pain meds tomorrow and see how he does without them.

He’s eating well and wants to play. You can see him plotting his next round of shenanigans in this picture. He sure doesn’t act like a ten-year-old dog that just had major surgery. And he’s full of kisses. He even kisses his “sister” Queen Lola, (another WestieMed alumnus) every single morning.

Thank you again from the bottom of our hearts! This little guy is FINALLY, FINALLY pain-free after years of agony!

Where would we be without WestieMed?

Josie Smith
New York Westie Rescue

Update December 24, 2016

Rory saw Dr. Brown last evening to have the sutures removed from his ear. That ear is well healed now, but we are still fighting on again off again infection in the other ear. Dr. Brown flushed and deep cleaned the other ear canal and we now have a new regime to try to keep the infections at bay. So more meds and flushes for poor Rory, but we must do what we must.

Unfortunately, the news on the biopsy was not what we wanted to hear. It came back as positive for Squamous Cell Carcinoma. The good news is that they believe that they got it all and that it did not penetrate the cartilage. That said, there is always the chance that it has already metastasized. For now, we are going to monitor his lymph nodes closely. Dr. Brown will be having a discussion with the oncologist as well.

Radiation is an option if needed, but it would be pretty tough on a dog as old as Rory is, and require that he be anesthetized for each of the eighteen treatments. He would also be required to spend an entire five days of each week of treatment at Cornell, and only come home on the weekends. It would be hard on him, and us as well. At this juncture, we don’t feel like that is something that he should be put through after all he has already endured. No decisions will be made until we have more information. At any rate, we are hoping that since the biopsy revealed that the tumor had not gone through the cartilage, that

There is also still a chance that he may require  TECA on the other ear unless we are able to lick this infection for good. It’s just gone on for so long that Dr. Brown isn’t optimistic. I’m encouraged about facing that prospect if it comes to it though, because of how very well he came through this one. He did really, really well, and healed quickly.

That said, Rory is like a different dog he is much more comfortable, full of energy and curiosity and loving life.

Thank you so much for helping this sweet old boy! He is a sweetheart and deserves to finally to happy, safe, loved and comfortable. He will remain with us, in his forever hospice home and be spoiled rotten and watched over by Her Royal Highness, Queen Lola.

With our deepest gratitude,

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you!

Josie, Rory & Lola

Casey - WestieMed Grant Recipient August 2015


Casey is a five-year-old male Westie that was surrendered to Westie Rescue of TN and AL in July 2015.  His owner had been dealing with Casey’s medical issues for several years and nothing was helping.  She realized it was time to turn Casey over to someone that could help him get well and contacted WRT/AL.

From looking at his pictures before we picked him up we initially thought he had the typical Westie skin and ear issues but soon realized that it was much worse than we thought. When he was picked up by volunteers Diane and Patsy, his eyes were matted, his ears were red, swollen and full of scabs, and his hair was non-existent in places on his body, particularly around his backside and tail.  The poor little one was pretty miserable and in obvious pain, as he would cry out when you touched him on his head.

As Casey was in desperate need of a bath, he was whisked off straight to a tub for gentle cleansing.  Through all his pain and the turmoil of that afternoon he never growled, snapped or fought our help.  He was such a gentle little soul and just looked at us with confusion, yet love. He knew his life was going to change for the better.  He seemed so appreciative of the smoothing bath and care he was getting.  

Casey had always been an outside dog so he was not accustomed to being inside in nice cool air.  We had to laugh at him in that he realized very quickly inside the house was much nicer than outside in the humidity and heat.  After being taken outside to dry off and “take care of business” he immediately found the back door and sat waiting to get back inside.  Smart Westie, no more living outside for this little guy.

The next day Patsy took Casey to our wonderful vet at South Franklin Animal Hospital for treatment.  Casey spent two weeks at the vet’s office being treated for his skin, eyes, and ears. He won everyone over at the vet’s office with his soulful eyes and gentle Westie personality. While his eyes and skin will heal with treatment and medication, unfortunately, his ears are going to require surgery. The infection and mineralization in his ears are to the extent he will have to have all the infected tissue and entire ear canal removed from both ears for any hope of controlling his pain.  And this is where WestieMed comes to our rescue by donating to his surgery.  We cannot thank them enough for contributing to his care.  Casey is one sweet little guy and deserves a chance to live life without pain.

Right now he is with one of our wonderful fosters, Sandy, waiting for his ears to heal to the extent he can have surgery.  He is loving being an inside pet and has made sure his “human” knows she belongs to him.  His foster Mom reports that his “Westitude” is beginning to emerge and he is doing great.  

We anticipate his surgery to take place within the next couple of weeks and we will update everyone on his progress.  Thanks again to WestieMed for supporting Westies in need.

Diane Vann, Officer
Westie Rescue TN/AL

Update December 8, 2015

Casey - WestieMed Grant Recipient August 2015
Casey – WestieMed Grant Recipient

Casey is doing wonderfully and is now up for adoption. His ears finally healed to the extent that he was able to have his surgery in early September. As it was a very extensive surgery and involved both ears, the healing process took a considerable amount of time.

Additionally, obviously parts of his head had to be shaved and for some period of time, he was styling with a mohawk cut so we wanted to wait until he looked a little less “punk” Westie, ha. He is now pain-free, finally after 3 years of enduring pain so intense you couldn’t even touch his head to love on him. He is a happy-go-lucky Westie, full of Westitude and loves to share with someone.

Thank you WestieMed for your help with Casey and so many of our other LWDs around the country. Casey sends tail wags and Westie kisses to you all.

Diane Vann, Officer

Westie Rescue TN/AL

Callie - WestieMed Grant Recipient July 2015


When Callie came to rescue from a San Diego shelter, we thought she had the typical skin issues that we deal with often in rescue and figured she would be fixed up in no time.   Once we took care of her skin issues, she was ready to be moved to a foster home while we interviewed applicants.  During her time in her new foster home, it was noticed that she was again losing some hair and was drinking a lot of water.   We brought Callie back to our vet where we had a complete blood count (CBC), blood chemistry panel and urinalysis performed and because we noticed her belly was larger than normal, we had her tested for Cushings Disease.  Low and behold, Callie did have Cushings.  Knowing that it would be very difficult to adopt a dog with Cushings, Callie’s foster Mom agreed to foster Callie for as long as it took to find her an appropriate home.

Several months went by with little interest in our girl but we remained hopeful.   Shortly thereafter, another issue popped up with this little girl that just could not catch a break.  We had been battling her chronic ear infections since she came to rescue, but it was painfully obvious that something drastic needed to be done.   Back to the vet, we went and during her exam, it was suggested we seek a second opinion with a specialist.  Our fears were confirmed that Callie would need TECA surgery (Total Ear Canal Ablation).  Poor Callie was stuck in a cycle of inflammation, infection, and fibrosis and the pain was just too much to bear. Callie had her first TECA surgery in June of 2014. 

Callie’s foster Mom was amazing and brought Callie through rehab beautifully.  With all these issues stacked against Callie, we knew finding her a forever home was nearly impossible.  So we approached her foster Mom and told her we would take her into our forever foster program once a home opened up.  Callie’s Mom literally made our hearts swell when she said that she would officially adopt Callie.  Knowing that she would most likely need another TECA surgery down the line, we agreed to a provisional adoption should Callie need another surgery. 

Everything was smooth for quite some time, but when her second surgery approached, we were not surprised.  We were grateful that her foster Mom was willing to get her through this next hurdle with the love and care she has received since she arrived at WROC.  What is even more amazing is how sweet and gentle Callie has remained during all of this.  She is a smart girl and a very good patient.  We do believe she knows we are here to help.

This is an expensive surgery and Callie’s costs since coming into our program have been astronomical.  Thanks to WestieMed, Callie just had her second TECA surgery.  So many Westies are abandoned to shelters due to their medical issues.  WestieMed has helped so many Westies get the help they so desperately need.

Kay DeLoach

Update January 15, 2016

Callie - WestieMed Grant Recipient July 2015
Callie – WestieMed Grant Recipient

Callie is doing very well now. 

After a couple of setbacks and more surgery, this little girl has made an astounding recovery. 

Her Mom, Kim, swears that Callie is able to hear despite the surgery on both ears. 

Callie is happy and well-loved by Mom Kim and brother Mini-Cooper!!

Kay DeLoach

Callie - WestieMed Grant Recipient July 2015
Callie – WestieMed Grant Recipient

Update November 16, 2016

Callie is thriving with Kim & Mini-Cooper.

She requires regular medical care which her Mom takes great care of. 

The picture is from WROC’s 2016 Photoshoot. 

Thank you very much for helping this adorable Westie. 

We are forever grateful. 

Kay DeLoach

Merlyn - WestieMed Grant Recipient April 2014


Merlyn came to New York Westie Rescue from a shelter. His owners had surrendered the old boy saying that the wife had ‘suddenly developed allergies’ to him, but his condition told another story. He was underweight, arthritic, his coat was very thin and his skin was not in good shape. His teeth were a mess, as well. He was old, grumpy and didn’t see or hear very well and walked with an odd gait from arthritis. He also had a growth in his left ear and an ear infection. He’d never been neutered, so his prostate was quite enlarged and like a lot of old men, he dribbled a bit. Poor Merlyn really wanted to be loved but wasn’t sure how to respond sometimes when he got it. He startled easily and would snap out of fear sometimes. We weren’t sure of his exact age, but the vet estimated that he was probably at least twelve or thirteen if not older. He didn’t have any adopters that were very interested in taking him on, so NYWR made the decision to keep him in the sanctuary.

After proper vetting, a new diet, dental cleaning, and neutering, he seemed a bit more comfortable and began to settle in, although because of the damage done by the severely enlarged prostate prior to coming into rescue, he would have to wear a belly band most of the time. He soon appointed himself the Lord of the Manor and when we got another little old fellow, Egan, who was in really terrible shape, he took up his post as Egan’s guardian and would watch over him, a task that he took very seriously and continued until Egan was well on his way to healing.

Unfortunately for Merlyn, his ear was not responding well to treatment. The vet tried a number of things but nothing was working and his ear began to get worse. We finally made the decision to get a second opinion. The vet we took him to decide that the only thing that was going to end Merlyn’s constant discomfort with his ear was a partial ablation of the ear canal, which is a very expensive procedure.

Thanks to WestieMed, we are able to schedule this surgery for Lord Merlyn, and provide him with some comfort and relief in his old age. Thank you WestieMed for the great work that you do and making it possible for Merlyn to start feeling better!

Josie Smith, Director
New York Westie Rescue

Update July 14, 2015

I am sorry to tell you that our sweet, loving little Merlyn passed to the Rainbow Bridge on June 4th of this year. After the surgery that Westie Med provided the funds for, a biopsy of the tumor that had invaded his ear canal revealed that he had a rare form of cancer, ceruminous adenosarcoma. There was nothing at that point that could be done to help him so we kept him comfortable in our hospice program and he survived with a good quality of life for several more months. Unfortunately, the tumor caused a stroke and when he lost his quality of life we made the decision to let him go.

Thank you for making the surgery possible, and allowing him to live without the pain of the tumor pressing on his nerve, and being loved and cherished. All of our Westies are special, but there was something about Merlyn that made him extraordinary. He was an extremely loving, loyal fur baby who was grateful for every little kindness and always thanked me for everything with a kiss. It never failed. Before he would eat, he would say thank you. When I tended his ear, he was grateful and would say thank you. Right up until the end he took his thrice daily house patrols quite seriously and would check each room and door to make sure that there were no intruders. He guarded me with devotion and never left my side. I miss him terribly.

I am more grateful than I can ever express for the help that WestieMed provided that allowed us to be blessed with him a while longer, and for him to experience the love and care that he was so grateful for. There are not enough thank you’s in the world to fully express our appreciation for the wonderful work that you do. So many Westies count on you.

With Eternal Gratitude,
Josie Myers-Smith