As she grew stronger, she got braver and started earning her feisty reputation. “She was a handful from day one!” Braden said. Braden’s attempts to confine Smush while she recovered from ringworm proved futile: “She climbed over every barrier I put up, so I caved in and gave her an entire room.”
When animals are orphaned at a very young age, they miss out on learning crucial social skills from their parents and siblings. It’s during these first months that they learn how to interact with others. A kitten being raised by his mother will be corrected if he bites too hard during play. He doesn’t intend to hurt his playmate, he just doesn’t understand the difference between play and prey.
The rescue assured her it would get better. Often, new adopters don’t realize there is an adjustment period for both owner and pet. Adopted pets are thrust into an entirely different environment and feel unsure of their surroundings at first. Everything is different, from the food bowl they use to the bed they sleep in. They may not eat, they hide and even the most housebroken dog may have accidents in the home. And they need time to get to know you.
Lizik committed to Buttons and sought resources for help. She read about the Shiba Inu breed and reached out to dog trainers for advice. Buttons continued to scream through the night. It was physically and emotionally exhausting for Lizik, and the training methods she was trying weren’t working.
Deciding she had to change her way of thinking, Lizik says she stopped thinking about what she needed from him.
“Trash ingestion, such as plastic bags, balloons and other nonbiodegradable plastics, are virtually impossible for us to detect with X-rays, CT scans or other diagnostics until it is too late,” Lauren Bell, a associate sea turtle and aquatic biologist at CMA, told the Dodo.
The team watched Chex very closely. His rehabilitation included monitoring his food intake and keeping him in shallow water, increasing the depth of his pool a little at a time as he became stronger.
Mariesa Hughes tried to remain optimistic about using human contact lenses for Gremlin. “I said I would try anything if it improved her quality of life,” she says. And in the exam room at Capital District Veterinary Referral Hospital, “I had many questions, but before Dr. Lackner had time to answer most of them, the contact was in, Gremlin was off of the table and pulling me down the hall!”
Dr. Lackner recalls that moment, too. “I think all of us had tears in our eyes when she looked up, as if coming out of a daze, and took off!” she says. “It still gives me goosebumps.”
Now Gremlin can find her water bowl without a problem.
“Since she’s had the lens in, she hasn’t run into anything,” Hughes says. “She no longer flinches when the other dogs walk by her and she found her water bowl without stepping in it and dumping the water out.”