Westie Rescue Southeast (WRSE) has contacted many commercial/puppy mill Westie breeders offering a safe haven for any Westies in need. An Amish breeder contacted us about Ivy.

She had been kept in a pen inside of a barn with many other dogs. Her legs were atrophied from lack of the ability to move around, she had countless amounts of puppies in her four young years and her vocal chords had been cut. The rescues in her area were contacted but they were unable to take her, so we flew to Ohio to pick her up and drove eight hours back to her foster home.

When Ivy was having her spay surgery, it was discovered that she had pyometra. Unfortunately, this is common for females out of commercial breeding facilities as they are kept in filthy pens or cages so they have a much higher chance of getting these infections. This make the spay surgery more complicated and higher risk. The infection was so severe that the inside of her uterus had turned green. The vet was very concerned about the possibility that the infection could have spread . She is on multiple antibiotics to hopefully prevent any further infection issues. The vet also confirmed her vocal cords have been cut. This is a cruel practice done by these mills to keep the dogs quiet.

After a week or so after her spay surgery, she became little lethargic and had a very high
respiratory rate. Her X-rays show spots in her right lung and an enlarged heart on the right side. She ultimately saw a cardiologist and Internal Medicine Specialist. The echocardiogram confirmed the enlarged right side of her heart but all of the valves and function are completely normal. She had broken out in skin lesions which they believe was an allergy reaction to the antibiotics she was on after her surgery. When they did the cytology of them there was bacteria present so she will be on a antibiotic for skin (Simplicef). However, because she has some cloudiness in her lungs along with these skin eruptions she was tested for blastomycosis fungal infection as a precaution. It is very prevalent in the area where she came from. The internal medicine doctor along with the radiologist didn’t think her lung issue is bacterial, but possibly lung worm. She will be on panacur dewormer for 10 days. This can cause the inflammation, cloudiness and spots seen on her X-rays. She is on medication to help get the inflammation down in her lungs so she can breathe easier. Lastly, she tested positive for Lyme disease. They sent out her blood sample to test the antibody level. Some dogs immune system will fight it off and still test positive. A 30 day treatment of doxycycline will be given if the
immune system was not able to fight it off.

She has done extremely well. Her westietude is starting to emerge. Her foster family is so in love with her and will most likely foster fail.

Thank you to WestieMed for helping us so that other dogs may receive the help they need.

Susie Massey

Westie Rescue SouthEast

Update March 12, 2024:

Ivy is doing well! As you know, last fall she battled pyometra, lung worms, hook worms, and Lyme disease. She is still having some issues with her gut biome (overgrowth of clostridium bacteria in her gut, we are working on it with her vet and Kym!). Behaviorally, she has made huge progress with her potty training although she is still not at 100%, but she is probably at 90%! She is very happy and comfortable at home with us but she is still fearful of visitors who come into our home, but getting more brave every day! Her personality has really started to shine through and she has become “mildly mischievous” and will sometimes steal a sock etc  We have taken her on 4 trips to Deep Gap, Cashiers, Charleston and Asheville. She got to visit on the beach for the first time last weekend at Folly Beach! We are working on her tricks. She knows sit, lay, shake paw and kind of knows twirl. She is very sweet and very loving. She does still struggle with her luxating patellas on both back knees as well as some quirky behavior on walks so we are working on leash walks in the neighborhood.

Susan D. Massey