July 15, 2009

Princess Chose Us: True Meaning of "No-Kill"

Princess captured the hearts of the Amazon CARES and Vet Ventures Team with her kind look. From the beginning of the year (2009), day and night she remained close by, closely watching us as we worked the Sterilization Campaign for the benefit of the city of Requena. It was she who chose us as her master.

The health status of Princess was very poor. We have tried our best to treat her skin problems, other issues, and even had a balanced diet flown from Iquitos for her (no nutritionally balanced dog food is available for public sale in Requena).

Slowly, Princess was getting better, and treatments seemed to be working, but then Princess started to have convulsions. We all got very worried, and considered poisoning, reaction to medicine, renal problem, and diabetes, as possible problems. Concerns and frustration grew; impatient for a solution to health problems we asked a distant laboratory for a diagnosis. Just as she began to improve again, we received the diagnosis: she is a Collie-mix, and Collies can react to treatment of scabies with convulsions, similar to poisoning.

As the days passed, Princess became a member of the Amazon CARES and Vet Ventures Teams, w
hile our deadline to leave Requena grew close. The thought of leaving Princess behind to wander alone and defenseless in the streets tormented us all. She had captured our hearts, so we brought her with us. In Iquitos, healthy and happy, she will have a better chance to have a family.

Princess had
another surprise for us, though. Her convulsions were back.

Alarmed by this situation, we performed various examinations and finally discovered that Princess has Epilepsy. In dogs, epilepsy is very similar to that in humans, and can be defined as, "an unloading of electrochemistry in the brain, appearing at any time and becoming repetitive with time.” This means that Princess needs medicines like Fenobarbital and Silimarina for the rest of her life in order to control the seizures. Since receiving these medications, there has been no more convulsions and Princess now waits be adopted.

Amazon CARES has decided to administer these medications to Princess for anyone who adopts her, for as long as is necessary, since these medications are strictly regulated under the Peruvian law.

How does this story relate to the "True Meaning of No-Kill?" See Part II of this article.

Contributors: Dr. Esther Peña, Ana Garca, Devin Greaney, Brandi Pool and Molly Mednikow

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