Bonnie, Our Little Camel

The highlight of our volunteer's feeding nights during the past few months has been this little girl.

Since we started feeding her a few months ago, she has been excitedly greeting us each week as we make our feeding rounds, sometimes dashing dangerously across the road to meet us with little care for passing vehicles. She was missing most of her fur and reminded us of Elmo (read about the original Elmo here). Even though her skin looked bad, it did not look to be giving her any trouble, and with our hands full with other more urgent rescues, we just left her be and visited her every Saturday.

However, we noticed her starting to scratch a lot more recently and have open sores, and were concerned that her skin condition may have become worse. Despite our lack of resources, we decided it was finally time to take her to the vet. Even though she was familiar with us, and had always been friendly and even happy to see us, it still took us 2 hours to capture her. When we finally managed to corner her, she was so frightened that she started snarling at us. But once we got hold of her and she realized that we were not going to hurt her, she went back to being her sweet and friendly self.

Searching for her
Caught and too shy to look at us
We took her to the vet the next day. She had a blood test and skin scrape done, and both came back negative for any illnesses or parasites. The vet concluded that her lack of fur was due to malnutrition. Malnutrition was also the reason for her small size. She weighed only 14kg. Due to her size and her puppy-like demeanor, we had always thought her to be a puppy, but the vet estimated her to be about 2 years old. The vet had also commented on her sweet disposition. Since she had been given the all clear by the vet, she was sent home with medicated shampoo and some medicines for her dry elephant skin.

Coming out of the carrier
Sweet little Bonnie; look at her dried skin.

Curious of her surrounding
Doing a skin scrape
Such a nice demeanor despite having her blood drawn
We have since named this little Elmo girl, Bonnie. As we did not have any fosters available, Bonnie was sent home with a volunteer temporarily. She eats very well, as if fearing each meal would be her last, and is not a fussy eater. What is saddening though, is that, she does not seem to drink any water. In fact, she does not seem to KNOW how to drink water. We watched her closely for 7 days and sure enough, not once did she approach the water bowl. She even uses her nose to push her towels to cover the water bowls so we often find her towels and bedding soaked in her water bowls. When we try dabbing water on her mouth, she just turns away to face the wall. Maybe, in her time on the streets, where water was hard to come by, she has learnt to survive without water. Whatever the reason, it seems she has forgotten how to drink. In order to make sure she has enough fluids, we add a lot of broth in her food. Her pee is dark and very pungent from the lack of water and her poo looks fossilized. Despite all this, Bonnie is still so sweet and affectionate. All she wants is just for someone to love her. When you pat her, she leans onto you and closes her eyes in obvious enjoyment. 

Poor Bonnie, her skin feels like sandpaper
Sad little camel

Bonnie needs a foster immediately. She is healthy and her skin condition is not contagious. We are also appealing for help with Bonnie's vet bills. If you can help with her vet bills, or foster her, email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg

All she needs is love . . . . .

Written by : Sam


Touch Me Not

We caught her! We caught little Elmo Girl!

Photograph taken last Saturday during our feeding rounds

Our volunteers rushed down to the industrial estate right after work and we spent about 2 hours searching for her. While we were searching, we spoke to some workers and many were not even aware that this little girl hung around their factory on her own, not even the security guards. No one seemed to care about her. Slightly after, we saw a worker looking around as he was leaving for the day. We asked if he was looking for her and he said yes, she would be out soon, he said, although he didn’t know where she hid during the day. He told us that she had been hanging around that factory for slightly more than a year and had no fur from the first time he saw her. He said “she must have eaten something wrong when she was a puppy.”
Volunteers searching for the dog
Soon the little girl appeared, walking down the road by her lonesome self, scratching as she walked. She was happy to see us and wagged her tail but as soon as she realized we were planning to catch her, she started running around the factory and panicking. She was a little wary of humans, possibly because no one had ever patted or touched her. Who would? A dog with no fur looking like she had some contagious disease. After a game of cat and mouse, fortunately we managed to corner her and leash her. By the time we got her, the vet was closed so she is presently at a volunteer’s home and will go to the vet in the morning.
Her eyes showed us sadness and tiredness

She reeked of oil and her skin smelled really bad, we had to drive with the windows down. The smell of oil on her could be from hiding and sleeping under lorries. She is very scared and refused food and water. She didn’t even want to look at us. Perhaps she knows she doesn’t look good.
Not wanting to look at us
We will update when we get more details after her visit to the vet.

WE NEED YOUR HELP. If you can foster / adopt / help with vet bills, please do so. It would mean a lot to this little girl whom we have named Bonnie.



Video : Emptiness 

What is your typical day like? Do you sit in an air-conditioned office for 8 hours a day and step out only for lunch? Do you sit in air-conditioned lecture theatres for classes and return to a comfortable home after a day out with your friends? For me, Milo, I do not know what air-conditioning is. Every day, I hide under big trucks to avoid the scorching sun and scampering humans. Sometimes, I would go on a mini adventure with my fellow dog pals in the factory and walk to the empty land opposite the factory. Flying dust and sand, muddy and stony ground, petrol water… these are the things that keep me and my fellow dog pals in the factory company on a daily basis.

This is home. Really? 

I used to be from another industrial area but the factory owners shifted here and brought me and some of my friends along. Sadly, not all my friends could come along. I miss them and the old factory. It might be a blessing in disguise for my friends not to have come to the new factory, as the new factory is even less salubrious than the old one. Anyhow, be it the old factory or the new factory, an industrial site is not the best place to live in. I understand from some of the kind volunteers who have been visiting my friends and I and feeding us that one of my best pals from the old factory, Horlicks, will soon have a home. They showed me some of his photographs and I am so happy for him. He seems to be in good hands and leading a much happier life than us. I hope Horlicks will lead a happy e-fur after life and his rescuers will have the resources to save more of my other friends, perhaps even myself.

Imagine living and sleeping in this work site

This is what we have to go through whenever we visit

 Despite their busy schedules, volunteers bring cooked food to these dogs twice weekly

Horlicks now gets home cooked meals, toys, a roof over his head, a nice warm bed, clean water, pats and walks every day. My friends, Peaches and Muffin, also get all of those! I wish that as many dogs as possible can experience the warmth of a family as they have. They are so sweet and should not be left to their devices and subject to the harsh elements of the factories and streets. At the moment, I am the only one in the video still living in this factory, together with my friends Kopi, and Scaredy Cat. Some of the factory workers are really kind and feed us when they are free or when they have leftover food. They are very busy though, and do not always remember to feed us. Luckily, a group of kind volunteers cook delicious food for us twice weekly. We always look forward to their visits and savour every grain of rice and every morsel of meat that they prepare for us. It is quite a spread. They prepare all sorts of meat, innards and rice for us and pack them nicely into clean containers. They also fill clean containers with water for us. We are ever so grateful to them. Due to the sand and dust, I have a bad eye infection and am constantly tearing. Besides feeding us, the volunteers also flush my eyes with eye drops and wipe them with tissue. The next morning, however, my eyes start tearing and producing discharge again. There is just too much dust and sand dancing around and getting into my eyes.
This is Kopi
This is Scaredy Cat
Mid-autumn festival is round the corner. As you gather with your friends and family and enjoy eating mooncakes under the bright round moon, I hope you will think of some of my friends and me who have no family to gather with. Even the big humans, the big burly workers, complain about the heat, dust and dirt. How can anyone expect poor sweet little innocent stray doggies like my friends to put up with such an environment? Yet, my friends and I never once complained and we take life in our stride. We love the kind volunteers that visit us and always welcome them with rapturous tail wags, sloppy licks and excited gestures such as showing them our bellies, running towards them and hopping up and down. Well, at least Mini Milo (renamed Muffin), Peaches and Camo (passed away) did that. I am a bit less friendly now as I miss the old factory and am still getting used to this strange place. I still am really appreciative of the humans though and love the food they prepare for us.

Kopi's home
Milo, Kopi's best buddy. Milo is depressed and has an eye infection from the dusty work site
Stray dogs are exposed to so many dangers and live in such awful and unimaginable conditions that it is heart wrenching and unbearable. Some of them have been abused by nasty humans before or bullied by more alpha dogs and are constantly living in fear, while others are completely innocent and sweet and easy targets for dog catchers. The poor dogs did nothing to deserve such a life. No dog and no one should have to lead such an undignified life. The Singapore government strives for a zero homeless rate and tries to make homes affordable for all with its public housing policies. We are concerned when we see old people collecting cardboard boxes and sleeping in the void decks, and rightfully so, because these poor old folks should be enjoying their twilight years. The same concern should be accorded to stray dogs instead of treating them as pests and trying to eradicate all of them and project a stray free image for our country. What did they do? Why do people shun them and think of them as scary and only capable of spreading diseases? Do humans not spread diseases? Are humans not nastier and scarier than dogs? Dogs love us, appreciate us, protect us and do so many wonderful things for us. We can certainly do more to promote animal welfare in our country. If everyone plays a part, the world will be a better, happier and safer place for strays. When someone adopts just one dog, he is saving not just one life but two because he frees up the resources for another dog to be saved. We might go as far as to say he is saving three lives because his life gets renewed with the addition of a new fur baby to the family. I shall leave you with this song: ‘Heal the world, make it a better place, for you and for me and the entire human race’. To that, let us add, ‘and all our animal friends’. 

Written by : Weiling


Get A Life

Today is a very special day.

Every Sunday, for the past many months, our team of volunteers make that trip to the far away makeshift shed to bathe, feed, walk and spend time with the 3 dogs caged 24/7 because of human selfishness. Just 3 hours once a week, that’s all the freedom they get.

Today is different. We are going to give them their freedom back.

First thing in the morning our team will be going down to free them from their makeshift sheds. Pet transport and vet appointments have been booked and on standby. The 3 dogs will be going straight to the vet for a full medical checkup. We will then ward them at the vet for a few days till we find saviors.

Marley (male) – estimated 5 to 6 years old, sweet, well-behaved, obedient, walks well on leash and loves life, despite having been banished to life imprisonment by humans.


Marilyn (female) – estimated 5 to 6 years old, intelligent, occasionally bossy to other dogs, sweet and affectionate, walks well on leash and drinks water with one paw in the water bowl.

Drinking water with 1 paw in the water bowl


Signature 1 paw in the water bowl pose

Marilyn knows some commands

 Phoebe (female) – estimated 2 to 3 years old, quiet, affectionate, sweet, walks well on leash, well-behaved, underrated.

The health of all 3 dogs are unknown but we will have more updates on their health after their vet visits and full medical checkups.

Now that they will soon have their freedom back, something that was rightfully theirs, let’s give them a life too. If you can be their savior or guardian angels, please email us.

Marley, Marilyn and Phoebe need help with the following :
*help with their vet bills

We don't have funds or resources to save and keep the 3 of them till they are rehomed, but we have great faith that you will come to their rescue and won't let them down. 


Oh Boy! Update On Danny

Two volunteers took the day off to take Danny to the groomer's and the vet. It was the first time in many years that Danny had been outside his home and he was clearly nervous. However, despite his nerves, he allowed himself to be groomed by the groomer, and prodded and poked by the vet with no fuss at all. At the end of each visit, both the groomer and vet confirmed what we already knew - Danny was a sweet dog with an excellent temperament.

Took Danny to the groomers as his fur was badly matted
Oh the joy of running around 
The vet estimated Danny to be about 6 years old, and he weighs around 7kg. The full checkup at the vet revealed that Danny has a slight heart murmur, but did not require any treatment for this for now. The more immediate problem was his skin condition. The vet advised that he should not be vaccinated until his skin was better. To treat his skin, he needs to be bathed twice a week with medicated shampoo. And he was also given ear drops to clean out the infection in his ears. To help clear up his skin and ears, he would need to be taken off his diet of bread and rice, and be put on a fish-based diet instead. He should also be ready to be sterilised in a few weeks.

Looking handsome after his groom
At his first vet visit, his skin was red, dry and itchy

The whole day he was out, he did not drink, pee or poo, probably due to the stress of being in unfamiliar surroundings and situations. However, all that met him that day were quick to fall in love with him and only had praise for this sweet boy.

Happy and smiling despite being at the vet

After discussing his medical needs with Mdm H and the social worker, it was decided that we took Danny into our care, as Mdm H would not be able to bathe him or administer the ear drops with the required frequency and consistency, given her own health concerns. Though she appreciated the offer for our volunteers to visit as often in the week as required to administer the medications, it was decided that this may not be best for her own recovery. So, while it pained all parties to do so, we believed that taking Danny back with us was for the best. Danny will be given the medical attention he requires, and Mdm H will have the worry-free time to rest and focus on getting better.

Photo on the left shows his skin drying up after 1 week of medication. Photo on right is when we first met Danny.

Danny urgently needs a foster. Please help if you can. His foster would be required to :
  1. Bathe him with medicated shampoo twice a week
  2. Feed him his medications twice a day
  3. Clean and medicate his ears twice a day
  4. Feed him home cooked food (fish based)
  5. He is quite a vocal dog as he has never been taught the right behaviour so his foster would need to teach him how to behave, not to bark, to be less excited and calm.
Danny gets on well with other dogs but ideally he should be fostered in a home with no dogs or with one calm dog.

To foster Danny, please email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg


Dogs Don’t Cry

At HOPE, we're always talking about the horrors that stray dogs face on the streets. We all know how tough life is, for a dog who doesn't have a home. But once in a while, we get a call about a neglected pet, and it breaks our hearts. A home should be a warm, loving, safe place, not a cold, damp prison. Once we adopt an animal, we are responsible for its life. They will have no other source of food, love, or comfort except us. We are all they know.

Joey, a 7 to 9 year old Silky Terrier, had a miserable home. For a large part of his life, he lived in a tiny cage in the corner of a toilet. His world was dark, dirty and lonely. He didn't get walks. He didn't get to smell fresh air. He didn't receive any affection, or get any acknowledgement that he was even alive.

Life wasn't always like that. When Joey was young, he too knew happiness. He had a loving owner, Mama, who would give him hugs and kisses. But one day, Mama was moved into a home for the aged... and Joey was moved into a cage in a toilet.

He missed Mama. He didn't understand what had happened, or where she had gone. He didn't know that his life had changed forever. As he got used to his new surroundings, he waited hopefully, anxiously for Mama's return.

But time passed, and Mama did not return. His naive hope slowly turned into despair, then lifeless depression. His family slowly stopped paying any attention to him. They did only bare minimum to keep him alive. They didn't groom him or give him showers. His meals came only once every few days, when they remembered to feed him. He was shriveling up, becoming skin and bones.

His very first bath after his rescue

According to the wife, Joey's owner would beat him when he was noisy. But Joey lived in a cage, so we're not sure how he was beaten. Maybe he was brought out of the cage to be beaten - in which case, it's no wonder that he would make noise. Even if he did receive a harsh beating, it was still an opportunity to leave that tiny hell. Maybe the owner opened the door just enough to stick a foot in to kick him, or maybe he just hit the outside of the cage. Who knows what creative ways of abuse Joey had experienced?

Maybe it was after one of these beatings that Joey's ear became so badly injured and infected that he could no longer hear. Maybe it was an ear infection left untreated. There was pus flowing out of his ear, and the ear was so swollen and heavy that it was hanging down, instead of perking up.

Badly infected ear filled with pus 

A kind woman had heard about Joey's plight from an ex-colleague. She saw his picture, and decided to foster him. She met him for the first time on 15 August 2015.

"His spirit was low, his teeth badly decayed, his left ear badly inflamed and infected and a body which is made up of skin and bones. I looked into his eyes and I wondered what made him live. Hope, I guess? Hope to be loved again. I fed and bathed him but I know he needed much more. He needed immediate medical help. I contacted HOPE Dog Rescue. Immediately they set up an appointment with the vet.

On the day of the appointment, they took over Joey’s case and did a blood test to check on his organ functions, ultrasound and urine test. Joey has 3 stones in the kidney area and one at the prostate, near the bladder. His urine was acidic. The vet suggested to do a surgery to have the stones removed and at the same time, sterilize him. It was also needful to clean his badly decaying teeth. Joey was given some antibiotics and steroid pills for his inflamed ear, and medication to clean his ear. He was also placed on a special diet due to his kidney stones.

Let’s hope the surgery can restore his hope."

Sweet little Joey at the vet

Imagine our shock and disgust when we were called to take Joey's case. A pet that was so badly neglected and abused that he needed immediate medical attention. Joey was skin and bones. He was peeing blood. He had pus flowing from his ears, which were so painful that he would instinctively snap and bite if we tried to touch them. His teeth were so rotten that we could smell them from a distance. He also had extremely poor eyesight.

Joey's pee

Badly decayed teeth that you could smell a mile away

Nails weren't as bad as we expected

Although Joey is almost blind, he can still see shadows up close. If your hand goes near him, he will growl and be very fierce. He must have been so badly abused for his behaviour to have become like that. Imagine a senior dog having to muster up all his energy to be fierce, to have to protect himself.

When we did the ultrasound scan, we saw stones in his bladder, kidney, and prostate. We scheduled his surgery to take place as soon as possible. In surgery, Joey's blood pressure plunged when he was under anesthesia, which was worrying, but the vet managed to bring the pressure back to normal. She said that some dogs are just sensitive to general anesthesia. Poor Joey! Luckily, the vet managed to complete the surgery and sterilize him.

Poor Joey's vision is so bad, he only sees shadows 

The big stone in his prostate has been removed. The clinic will send it to a lab for a biopsy test. The stones in Joey's bladder are no longer visible. The vet mentioned that they have been flushed out by pee, a side effect of the medication that Joey is taking for the blood in his pee.

The infected ear has been flushed and most of Joey's rotten teeth have also been removed. The good news is that the clinic managed to save some of his teeth by cracking off the tartar build up.

Sweet Joey looking really cute with his muzzle during the vet check

The vet also advised that we put Joey on a renal diet, probably for life, as she was concerned that he might be prone to having stones in his kidneys. Since he's already a senior dog, he may not be viable for surgery to remove any more stones in the future.

Overall, the surgery was successful and Joey will be kept in the clinic to be monitored for a few days before he is discharged. Joey has gone through so much. We're so glad that he has finally received the care he needed. We look forward to him starting his life anew, in a proper home where he is wanted and loved.

Poor Joey will be warded for a few days till his condition stabilizes 

If you can help with poor Joey’s vet bills, please email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg