by Lee Juslin
China, a special needs wheaten Cairn, presented a tough case for Col. Potter Cairn Rescue.
At nine years old, China had suffered years of neglect and abuse. Her tail was broken in several places and her sphincter muscle was damaged, both of which made elimination difficult. She was also missing the top half of her right ear and had chronic bronchitis. And, on top of all of these problems, she was very scared of people. Upon in-take China went to a vet to be assessed. All the strange people and noises caused her to crash, and she spent time in ICU.
When she was well enough to leave the vet’s care, she went to Kathy to be fostered. An experienced foster parent in her ninth year of fostering, Kathy feels that China may have been kept in a multi dog pen where fights often broke out. In addition, Kathy thinks the little Cairn may have been kicked.
Fostering China was not easy. Kathy had to use wet wipes every time China eliminated. Also, China marked in the house so she needed to wear piddle pants. Due to her damaged sphincter, China often had accidents in the house when she barked or ate certain foods. Kathy quickly put her on a feeding schedule with a particular food and supplemented with doses of Metamucil. Kathy also keeps a humidifier running to combat China’s chronic bronchitis.
Kathy has had China for about a year and just recently has gotten her to the point where she is leash trained. China doesn’t like to be touched and prefers a comfy bed in a tucked away spot. She is good with other dogs, doesn’t play with toys, but has a number of little fears. She does love to cuddle up on the rug near the wood stove in Kathy’s family room, and she doesn’t seem to mind when Kathy’s husband sits nearby. China sleeps in her crate at night and is not a big barker. Although she does not ask for attention, China has learned to enjoy having her nose and muzzle stroked.
China needs a fenced in yard and at least one other dog to help her learn normal dog behavior. But, despite all her problems, Kathy feels that with a quiet home with structure and her own person with the patience to work with her, China will do well because, as Kathy says, “China is a flower waiting to bloom”.
UPDATE: China has an adoption pending. The adopter looked past all her problems and fell in love with this sweet Cairn. As Kathy said, “It just proves once again that there is someone out there for all these babies if we just keep trying.” Happy forever home, China.
If you would like to learn more about Col. Potter Cairn Terrier Rescue to donate, foster, apply to adopt a sweet Cairn like China, or volunteer, visit their website: Col. Potter.
Check out more animal rescue & therapy animal stories in our Pets section.