Specially-Abled Animals Day — Maxwell

Maxwell was surrendered to our house of misfit toys when the backyard breeder realized he was not going to “regain feeling” in his back legs (disclaimer: he never used his back legs). Maxwell was born with a condition called “Swimmers Syndrome” which is an uncommon developmental deformity of newborn puppies and kittens whereby the limbs– primarily the hind limbs are splayed laterally resulting in an inability to stand or walk). He is not in any discomfort or pain and the condition will not get worse (though with rigorous physical therapy, love, patience and we are doing acupuncture as an extra measure) and honestly it does not slow Maxwell down at all! He is an affectionate, ornery, playful little boy who craves attention from his friends and family and loves to get into stuff.

Maxwell was surrendered because he was considered “broken” and unable to sell but honestly in this situation their loss was our gain! We obtained such a sweet, full of zest little boy who is teaching us so much as well as helping us with our sorrow over losing Maggie Mae. Maxwell blessed our lives at the most perfect time — right when I vowed that I would never have another pug after Maggie Mae, Maxwell came into my clinic needing someone to love and understand him (as well as be patient and work with him) but I equally needed Maxwell in my life — to love & understand me.

Specially-Abled animals grace our lives for a plethora of reasons and sometimes those reasons are not so blatantly clear but it is not our job to understand it is just our jobs to give these babies every opportunity to thrive and to succeed as well as to be loved & protected.

Continue to check back for Maxwell updates and progress on his physical therapy and acupuncture!

Specially-Abled Animals Awareness — “Hips”

Specially-Abled animals grace the world in different breeds, colors and abilities ranging from neurological to physical but that does not stunt their ability to love and overcome any endeavors stemming from their special-abilities and one of the biggest adversities that specially-abled animals face are the stigma and myths that encapsulate them.

In speaking with Amber (Hip’s mom) she informs us that Hips was born with a hind-end congenital defect where she she lacks hip sockets (hence her name), knees are displaced, her leg bones are abnormal, her ankles are fused, and she lacks certain ligaments/joints in the hind-end (she was born with this particular defect). Due to this congenital defect Hips typically drags herself around but when she wants to walk she walks on her tip-toes where her legs bow out and she can walk for about 5ft or even longer if she’s running. 

Despite her shortcomings Hips doesn’t let her disability stop her or slow her down! She can climb, climb over certain obstacles and she can get in/out of a box and if she wants on the cat tower she figures out the easiest and most convenient way to achieve that! Whenever she wants on the bed she uses towels and blankets to assist her in her efforts. She has a special litterbox made but she will choose a normal box 98% of the time and uses without any complications. Hips also likes challenges and pushes herself daily and does not let her special-ability slow her down or hinder her ability to play, love, snuggle and just be herself!

Hips suffers early arthritis in her hips and megacolon due to the defect unfortunately and is on medications to help alleviate any arthritis she is feeling but that does not seem to slow her down at all! One of the many things we have learned after adopting Hips is how she communicates with us and lets us know if she is in any pain (stemming from her arthritis). To help further alleviate any discomfort she feels we participate in laser therapy several times a week as well as hydrotherapy every so often as needed.

You can watch Hip’s adventures you can find her on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/hipsspecialneedskitten) or on Instagram (@HIPSSPECIALNEEDS_ANDHERSQUAD)

With all these challenges and road blocks Hips never stops being the happy, sassy, opinionated little girl! She continues to work to show the world that despite Hip’s “shortcomings” she is a happy, healthy, sweet girl that is working to bust the stigma of specially-abled animals! Check out Hip’s and support a fellow specially-abled pet!

May 03, 2021 – Specially-Abled Awareness Day

If you would have approached me when I was 18 years old, fresh out of high school and trekking to college and informed me that in the year 2021 I would have a husband, a house, a career and have a small “herd” of specially-abled animals I probably would have scoffed and laughed at those insane statements (mainly the part where I got married!) but I would have never imagined the twists and turns that life would have gifted me but most of all I never would have imagined being “mom” to a rag-tag band of adorable “misfit toys” but I wouldn’t have it any other way!

I was unprepared for each of my specially-abled babies here but by serendipitous luck they all crashed into my world in their own amazing and unique way where initially I was afraid, worried that I would not be able to properly care for these “special” pets (as the word “special” was burned into my brain and regularly emphasized on) but the strangest thing happened … as time went on I focused *less* on their “special needs” and more on the fact that they had stolen my heart and I had fallen head over heels in love with each and every one of them. When I looked at them I did not see any special needs, I did not see anything “different” about them all I could see was their strength, their tenacity and optimism, I saw their love for me and for as much as I worried over them and my ability to care for them or understand them they loved me no matter what I did (mistakes or no mistakes!) and then I realized something extremely important…

All they needed was love and compassion with a dash of empathy and a willingness to learn. Their label of being “special needs” was not a reflection of their love, their personalities and the grasp they would have on my heart and soul.

I suppose though that none of this would actually come to a shock to those who know me know that nothing in my life is considered “normal” or standard” by any means and that is alright — what is that old saying? “Variety is the spice of life” and I have a variety of specially-abled pets that are all strong, resilient and fill my life and my heart with so much love!

If given the option ALWAYS take a chance on a specially-abled pet!