Roxy, The Sweet Accidental Rescue

Dogs come into our lives for a reason, as guardian angels to teach us about love, patience and perseverance. Roxy’s rescue was not planned nor intended. Perhaps there was a reason why she came into our lives and soon, yours too.

It was a routine visit to the fish farm to check on dogs there. We were on our way to the farm when we spotted a male dog who looked like he had an extremely severe case of demodex, coupled with infection and open wounds on his entire body. The dog looked tired and malnourished. But within a blink of an eye, we lost sight of the dog.

Poor dog with severe skin issues
Along comes Roxy
Roxy on the left, sniffing for food
Roxy looked as if she has had more than 1 litter of puppies

Volunteers then spent about an hour looking for the dog with the bad skin. When we saw him again, he was very skittish and wary. We tried to lure him closer with canned food but he still kept his distance. While we were trying to feed him, the wind must have carried the smell of the canned food a distance. Soon, a young female dog walked along the road and came by to look for food. She was Roxy. She looked lost and it was apparent that she had given birth recently as her nipples were dark and droopy. Upon seeing her, we left some food for her at this deserted area and left. We then scheduled to trap the male dog with the skin problems the following day.

Have you ever seen such a sad dog? 
The next day we were there early to set up the trap. A volunteer put some food in the trap hoping to lure the dog with the skin issues. After waiting a good half an hour, there was still no sight of the dog. Then, out of nowhere, Roxy appeared again! She sniffed around the trap, and within the next few minutes, she went into the trap and was caught. Although she was not our targeted dog, we still decided to send her to the vet and have her sterilised and released as part of our Trap-Neuter-Release (TNR) programme. We looked around but as there was dense forestry nearby, we could not find her puppies.

At a glance, Roxy looks like a hound-boxer cross. All our volunteers who have met Roxy shared one common conclusion; she was the saddest, most depressed dog they had ever met. One could literally feel her sadness just by looking at her sweet face. And her sadness is so deep that we think it might take a lot of love and patience to make her smile again. But that day will come, and all our efforts would be worthwhile.

Her deep, soulful eyes tell us of her hardship living on a deserted plot of land, surrounded by dense forest, where food is scarce, and human contact more so. She lived a sad, lonely life, trying her best to fend for herself and her babies. No one knew of her existence. No one cared if she lived or died. She had nothing.

Roxy was scrawny. Her body structure revealed that she had probably not had a decent meal in weeks. Her ribs were protruding, and her teats were drooping. She seemed malnourished and despite her young age, looked tired. Had we not accidentally caught her, she may have had to continue living this miserable existence for the next 10 years, if she actually survives that long.

At the vet, sad, scared and worried
At the vet, there was more news to add to her sadness. The vet estimated her to be about 2 years old and said her blood count was low. She was diagnosed with Babesia Gibsoni which is a strain of tick fever and perhaps that was one of the contributing factors to her scrawny frame and tiredness. Because of this, Roxy could not be sterilized.

She is currently undergoing treatment and it would take a few months to clear the Babesia parasites. It may also not clear completely, depending on Roxy's immune system. Thus, she would need a blood test in a month’s time. Sterilization or any surgery at this point in time is not possible as it would put Roxy’s life at risk.

Terrified of everything. Poor Roxy
Roxy didn't have a caregiver where she was found. In fact, there were hardly any humans in that vicinity. It is a deserted place where street dogs like Roxy can only hope to find enough leftover food to survive. As a small rescue group, funds are often limited. Roxy’s sad eyes pleaded with us not to put her back where she came from. As we could not bear to break her heart, we decided to take her in and rehome her. Like with the many dogs we have rescued, we hope to find Roxy a family that will welcome Roxy into their family with open arms.

There is always a reason why a certain rescue story grabs your attention or touches your heart, isn’t it? Will you be the one to adopt Roxy, regardless of her lack of pedigree? Will you give her the chance to spend the next 10-15 years in the security and warmth of a home, and treat her with the love and respect that all dogs deserve?

Roxy awaits that chance. If you are able to help with Roxy’s vet bills for her Babesia treatment, foster, or even better, provide Roxy with a permanent home filled with many hugs, love and kisses, please contact us at hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg

Written by Lisa G.