Meet Our Volunteers Who Bring HOPE

In this short series of “Young Hope”, we speak with 6 of our volunteers and find out what inspired them to embark on this journey of volunteering with Hopedogrescue, their most memorable moments, as well as what keeps them going even when the going gets tough! We hope these amazing young people will inspire more out there to join in our mission to spread love and hope!

Bel & SiDa

Bel has been part of our team since June 2016. Her areas of volunteering are stray feeding, helping out at events and our playhouse.
“I've always had an interest in helping strays. For some reason they are just more endearing to me – it gives me much joy and satisfaction to see them happy and carefree. Back in Thailand where I grew up, I have always had the habit of feeding hungry and malnourished strays as I couldn't bear the sight of them looking bony and thin. This has been such an important part of my life that I have found myself missing something ever since I have been in Singapore. Thus I decided to join a volunteer organisation to improve the lives these strays that are often treated very poorly. And by chance, I found Hopdogrescue! The biggest draw for me was because Hope didn't coop the dogs in kennels and wasn't a kill shelter; that was very important in my decision making. 
I am happiest and proudest when even after a long time, the dogs actually do still remember you and greet you with a wide, goofy doggie smile! Seeing the dogs run up and hungrily devour the food given during our stray feeding sessions really warms my heart as I can sense how they are appreciative of our trying to fill their bellies to the best of our abilities. 
What I love most about being part of the Hope effort, is being able to continuously help and rehabilitate our strays, while guiding other new volunteers to do the same. I really hope that we can grow into a bigger organisation with regular volunteers and be able to help more dogs!”

Hwee Chin

Hwee Chin & Charlie 

Having been with us for slightly more than a year since she joined in June 2016, Hwee Chin has shown her passion for helping our four-legged friends as she gladly takes on the responsibilities of dog walking, stray feeding, accompanying dogs to vets and helping out during events and playhouse sessions.

“My reason for joining Hopedogrescue is actually quite simple; I just wanted an opportunity to spend more time with dogs! Though I do not have a dog right now, I appreciate every chance to get close to them and being with Hopedogrescue gives me lots of opportunities to do not just that, but also help give them a better life. 
I wouldn’t name favourites but when Chester mastered “sit”, I felt really proud and overwhelmed with emotion. I wish that more people can see the loving and adorable sides of our strays; it is my fervent hope that more people can take the initiative to get closer to these friendly creatures.”

Mr. Expresso (Ram)

Old man & Young man

Being no stranger to bigger dogs having owned a Doberman named Bubbles when he was 12, Mr. Expresso has been with us since February 2016. He mainly handles tasks such as dog walking, stray feeding, cooking, accompanying dogs to vets, events and playhouse.

“Hopedogrescue gave me the opportunity to regain my relationship with dogs, just when I thought I was no longer capable of handling and providing for them. 
TNR is one the activities that left an indelible impression on me. From the sight of the dogs scampering in consternation from rustling in the grass, to that of them gnawing at the cage desperately, it gave me insight into how cruel and hopeless they perceive the world to be. It rekindled the need and desire for me to show them that there is still compassion, empathy and love in this world. I am glad to have found Hopedogrescue, being the best outlet for me to do that, no matter how small my contribution may be. 
Spending time bonding with the dogs and other like-minded people is my feel-good activity that has helped me in many ways, as much as I hope I have helped them. I would like to see us continuing to help animals in need, while maintaining our same principles and values.”


Rebecca & Pumpkin

We call her the “baby” of the team as she hasn’t been with us for very long, but Rebecca has proven herself worthy of her mantle by picking up the ropes quickly. She helps out with the house cleaning and bathing of the dogs.
“All I wanted to do when I joined Hopedogrescue as a volunteer, was to help the strays; the unwanted, unloved and under-privileged dogs that had nowhere to call home and no one to love them. Even though I may not be capable of doing much, I really wanted to let them know there are kind humans out there who can and will love them no matter how they look. 
A doggie’s heart is truly amazing – I recall that even after being badly abused and terrified of humans, the dog could still muster a smile after I helped her out. It is this lovely and pure nature of the doggies that have me missing them when I am not with them! 
I truly wish that more people can volunteer with us and help these furry friends – they are so deserving of a better life!”

Claire & Brandy

While looking for something meaningful to do on the weekends, Claire was inspired by her love for dogs and since she did not have any, why not volunteer at Hopedogrescue! She has been with us since May/June of 2016 and handles duties such as dog walking, stray feeding, accompanying dogs to vets, events, fostering and playhouse.

“Volunteering takes heart, effort and more importantly, the ability to empathize with others. I find myself happiest when I realize the dogs remember and respond to me even after I don’t see them for a few weeks. It makes me treasure every moment I have with them, especially when I see my dogs make amazing progress in health and emotionally. It reminds me to come back often as every interaction means a lot to our dogs. 
If I could make one wish for Hopedogrescue, it would be have more regular volunteers and a bigger place so that we can house our dogs and more new friends we rescue from the streets.”

Ying Jie

Mary & Ying Jie

Meet Ying Jie, who has been volunteering with us since June 2016 and taken on duties such as stray feeding, accompanying dogs, helping with events, fostering and playhouse sessions. No qualms about walking the talk; she is also a foster. 

“I have always loved dogs and knew of the stray situation in Singapore. Yet I did not encounter a suitable platform for me to get to know them better, interact with them and help them out. 
Being part of the Hope family, I was able to direct my time and efforts to the vital aspects such as being part of the rehoming process for Mary (one of my personal favourites!) And if you think that strays are “fierce” and “unruly”, then you should meet Pumpkin, a darling who has progressed tremendously; from a fearful girl of before to now comfortable with human touch, eating treats from my hand and allowing me to shower her! 
Even though our team is small now, we are still glad to see that our dogs are happy and enjoying their walks and outings. I also love that as a smaller group, we really get to interact with and know each dog better. We are also very close-knit amongst our volunteer crew! 
Volunteering might seem intimidating at first, especially for those who never interacted with strays or cleaned pee and poop before. But it’s all worth it if our efforts enable our dogs to have a better chance of being rehomed.”

Written by : Wee Yen


Coco, Hanging On

Coco suffered her seizure throughout most of the cab ride to the vet that her tongue had turned blue but Ena stayed calm and Coco was rushed into emergency and administered oxygen, put on IV and given a diazepam jab to stop the seizure. Her body temperature was so low that they needed to use hot water bottles to warm her up.

Coco at home when we went to visit her for the first time
Coco at home, too weak to stand properly 

They did a blood test and it was no surprise that the results showed that she has end stage renal failure. Her seizure was probably caused by the buildup of toxins in the kidneys. According to her family, Coco has been walking around with her head down and walking in slow circles which could signal a neurological problem. Her eyes are a little glazed and leaking discharge so we are unsure if she has any sight in them. She is also severely dehydrated. However, these are all secondary concerns. The main priority is to stop the seizures. Thankfully, Ena has been going over to the elderly couple’s home twice a day to give Coco subcutaneous drips for the past 2 weeks, that sustained her and kept her going.

Hot water bags to keep Coco warm as her body temperature was low 

The vet wanted to ward Coco for 2-3 days. However, with our experience, we'd rather not ward old dogs overnight. It’s very scary for any dog to be alone in a strange environment without their loved ones, much less an older, sick dog. So the plan is to have Ena take Coco to the vet every morning and update the vet on Coco's condition at home. The volunteers will see to her discharge and send her home at 8pm in the night. To reduce the stress of waiting for a cab each morning, we have arranged for pet transport to take Ena and Coco to the vet for the next 3 days. While at the vet, Coco will receive fluids, glucose, food through IV, heat pad and be under close monitoring for any seizure. Each day is estimated to cost around $350 to $400. We don’t know how she will be, if she will get any better, or how long this arrangement will need to be in place. We have planned this till Friday and will re-assess the situation then.

Discharging Coco, after spending a full day at the vet on IV drips
Volunteers sending Coco home
Coco sleeping soundly at home. Actually she is heavily sedated.

It’s a bit more trouble and effort arranging and coordinating daily visits to the vet as all our volunteers have day jobs, but we want Coco to be able to see her family every night and not be scared or worried alone at the vet overnight. We want what's best for Coco, for her to be comfortable and unafraid. If she needs to transition, we hope to ease it so that she goes without much pain and suffering.

If you can help with the vet bills and bring some comfort to and elderly couple, their old dog, and a kind neighbour who won't give up on them, please email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg.


Devastating News About Baby Harper

All is not well with Harper. She has not been eating well over the last few weeks, usually only eating a few mouthfuls a day, and sometimes only just 2-3 pieces of meat. Even roast duck, KFC and chicken nuggets don't tempt her enough to eat. Feeding Harper has always been a challenge. Harper does not like liquids. She has been on a subcutaneous drip for the past year as she was diagnosed with kidney disease before. Her kidney readings are back to normal but she continues to be on drip due to her continued aversion to water, milk or broth.

Harper at the vet this afternoon

Her liver readings are off-the-charts

We brought Harper to the vet today as her lack of appetite was concerning us. The results of the blood test were devastating. Her liver has failed, the readings so off-the-charts that the machine could not record them. The vet's first suspicion was poisoning but Harper did not show any other signs such as vomiting or diarrhea. Besides, Harper being such a picky eater, it is unlikely that she ate something off the floor on her walks. Her liver failure is acute, and the vet concluded that it could be due to diet or is congenital. Given that Harper was born with a lot of deformities, including smaller organs, it is likely to be the latter. Despite her ailments, Harper is, at least, still alert, active and cheeky, and stills shows great joy on her daily walks and weekly dips at the beach in Sentosa.

Harper's slaves taking her for a dip last week 

Harper being the fussy eater, imagine the struggle to get her to eat her meds which total 8 tablets! She struggles so much each time that it looks like she is having a seizure. Today the vet recommended that she be put on a low protein diet, which must be as unappealing as it sounds as she would not even go near. The food needs to be blended and fed to Harper through a syringe. She does not like that very much and 70% of the food ends up on her fosterer's clothes then in Harper's tummy where it should be.

Harper drawing blood for tests

Dr Ly has ordered an ultrasound to try and identify the cause of Harper's liver failure. As much as we want to get it done sooner, it is only scheduled for tomorrow afternoon as the ultrasound technician is away today.

Today’s vet bill was $560 and tomorrow’s ultrasound will set us back by another $420. We do not have any funds left but how do we tell Harper we can’t afford it because Raphael and Sugar had utilized all our funds?

We hope she pulls through this because we all know she’s a little fighter, so we need to give her a fighting chance. Email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg if you can help with Harper's vet bills. 


World Animal Day 2017

4 October is World Animal Day. A day to recognize the contribution our furry friends make in our lives. Dogs make us safer, sniffing out drugs and bombs, often at a risk to their own lives. They shower us with unconditional love and affection. And they make us a better version of ourselves.

Shweta and Mary (adopted)

At HOPE Dog Rescue, we want to celebrate World Animal Day 2017 with a simple
four-letter word: HOPE.

Hope that you choose to adopt a dog instead of buying one (and promoting cruel breeding practices). An adopted pet is every bit as capable of endless love and loyalty as his purebred counterpart who is unfortunately a victim himself of mercenary, over-breeding practices.

Lois and Marilyn  (adopted)

Hope that the next time you walk past a stray, you spare a thought for him, for what he may have endured, and how you could make his life better, even a little.

Baby Sugar *available for adoption*

Hope that you never think less of a special-needs dog, or think he is too much work or not worth it. Because he certainly is. Our special needs-dogs like Matthieu, Harper and SiDa have such a bright, positive and cheerful outlook on life despite their handicaps, they put most of us to shame.

Hope that you appreciate how valuable an addition a senior dog can make to your home. And what an enriching, meaningful experience it can be to give a loving, mature animal a home in their final years.

Adora *Available for fostering / adoption* 

Hope that you share our vision of giving our street dogs a renewed chance at life, of showing compassion and empathy to our furry buddies who have known none.

Raphael, our latest rescue 

This World Animal Day it is our hope that all street dogs find a home they belong to, and be loved and cherished as they truly deserve.

Written by : Sheenu