Sometimes Love Just Ain’t Enough

They say that love can conquer all; we strive to believe but sometimes it gets really difficult to keep the faith. We are a small group of volunteers with limited resources; but try to make do and scrape by with whatever we have, to do everything we can for our furry friends.

Diaper Club Buddies 

Over the years we have been tireless about our efforts to spread hope and bring new beginnings to street dogs and cats. However, this repetitive cycle has taken quite a toll on our finances. It is with certain urgency that we share this appeal, hoping it will inspire more to contribute to our cause.

Our latest rescue, baby Balloon. 

Bills : The dreadful but unavoidable word that weighs heavily on our shoulders. Currently, we owe $8,000 to a big-hearted vet - which is not a lot compared to some other shelters - but quite a substantial amount especially since we also need maintenance funds for our existing dogs.

Most of our money goes towards sterilization and stray feeding, which on average adds up to $1,000 or more per week, depending on how many strays we can catch each week for sterilization. How do we arrive at this figure?

Yes! We feed and rescue cats too.

A hefty part of it comes from the cost of food for strays (if nobody donates cooked food,) as well as the dog and cat food we distribute to workers to last them throughout the week since we can only go on stray feeding missions on Saturday nights. Another costly expense is sterilization, depending on how many strays we manage to catch and sterilize each week. More often than not, these cats and dogs are diagnosed anemic or carry tick fever, which means they have to stay at the vet for a week to boost their red blood cells count before we can sterilize them. Some can't be released because once we do, we may not be able to trap them again for sterilization; accommodating them rings up the expenses. Also, due to harsh living conditions, they are plagued by open wounds and infections which call for immediate medical treatment.

Love of our lives 

There are days when we are deterred by these extra costs, because there are hardly any funds coming in. Typically, funds usually come in only when we have a new rescue – no rescue equates no funds. But if we don't continue to sterilize the strays that we encounter, it would mean new puppies and kittens on the streets. This equates to more road kills or becoming nuisances in factories, which may lead to the bosses getting the authorities to cull them. Simply put, this is a never-ending cycle that leads us to forking out more and more money.

Adding to the seemingly never-ending list are the “tough-nut cases” - dogs with such severe aggression that they become near impossible to rehome. In these instances, we have little choice but to take on the financial responsibility of providing for these tortured souls till the end of their time. In the meantime, these dogs live a sad, isolated existence because we don't have the expertise nor the funds to send them to rehabilitation.

Tako, adopted as a puppy and returned recently for severe aggression. No one has been able to even go near him

Under our care, there are senior dogs with acute health issues and complications. They are too old to rehome because the process might cause them undue stress. For many people, special needs dogs require too much time and work; these inevitable factors render them less “adoptable”. Regardless, these are the dogs we love with all our hearts,

Mathilda has been waiting for a home for more than 3 years

Unfortunately, we have learnt the hard way that love doesn’t pay the bills. Keeping our dogs requires a steady source of funding: They need massages to promote their blood circulation, hydrotherapy so their muscles don't waste away and follow-up vet visits. Not to mention, hefty boarding costs because we don't have a physical shelter and fosters are not easy to come by, especially for dogs with aggression issues.

Cody has been waiting for a home for 5 years.

This just about sums up what we have to fork out each month. Our list is non-exhaustive, yet we often find our accounts running on empty.

The vet has been generous enough not to give us the final ultimatum that we can't bring in our dogs if we don't settle the outstanding amount. Fingers tightly crossed; we hope not (and never) to reach that breaking point, so please do help us if you can.

Adora, aggression and slow to warm up. Abused and abandoned by her previous owner, she often wonders why her??

You may choose to send your cheques directly to the vet clinic. Please email us at hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg and we will be glad to provide you with more details. Thank you very much for helping our dogs and cats – they will be so happy to know that they have not been forgotten in this world!

Xin Xin, waiting for her forever home too. 

Sweet Lil’ Balloon

What makes you happy? Is it the simple things in life like balloons and puppies? Well, recently, we found double happiness in a puppy called Balloon! Imagine that! How adorable.

A happy Balloon at his factory before the accident 

Like a child that lights up when you hand him a balloon, our eyes and hearts lit up when we saw Balloon and his sister wagging their tails at us and waddling excitedly towards us during one of our stray feeding sessions. They are so cute. We had intended to feed the cats in the factory but were pleasantly surprised by these two little puppies who suddenly appeared. It turned out that their mother had passed away in a car accident, so one of the workers brought them over to this factory. Yet, about three weeks ago, just after feeding them for about a month or so, we learnt that Balloon's sister had passed away in a hit-and-run accident too, leaving poor Balloon all alone in this big big world. The worker told us that he had been crying for days. Balloon and his sister tugged on our heartstrings and it really broke our hearts to hear that.

In a Toyogo box, on the way to the vet 

Poor Balloon... it never rains but it pours. Balloon must have missed his family a lot and gone out in search of them very often. When we went to feed Balloon and the cats in his factory last Saturday, we were greeted by a deflated Balloon, not an inflated and flying Balloon. There was no wiggly butt and sloppy kisses. Balloon was just lying in a corner. Our hearts sank. What happened? On closer inspection, we discovered that Balloon was injured. He could not use one of his legs. The worker told us that Balloon had been run over by a motorcycle four days before we went for stray feeding. They applied medicine for Balloon and did not call us for help.

The motorbike had dragged poor lil' Balloon, causing very severe abrasions; most of his skin on his undersides were torn off. 

It was a double whammy for Balloon and us. We rushed Balloon over to the vet the next morning. Sweet Balloon was such a good boy at the clinic and allowed the vet to handle him without biting despite being in pain. Balloon is now eating well and does not have any fever. He has pain in the lumbar region and feeling in his toes and hind legs. He is also able to stand. However, the doctor advised amputation after x-rays had been taken. We will seek a second opinion and try to save Balloon.

His pelvis and knee caps were totally out of place by impact. His thigh bone had snapped too.
Winnie the Pooh said in A.A. Milne's book "The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh" that "no one can be uncheered with a balloon". Indeed, there is nothing that lifts the spirits like a balloon. Like a balloon, little Balloon always brings us hope and joy even when he is in pain. He is so sweet and good-natured. Let us hope that little Balloon will recover soon and run happily like a balloon that soars in the sky. Balloons also fulfil hopes and dreams. In the movie "Up", the balloon salesman Mr Carl Frederickson fulfilled his dream by tying thousands of balloons to his house and flying away to the wilderness. Life is unpredictable and tough, more so as a stray subject to the elements. Blessed as we are, we hope we can bring hope and happiness to Balloon too and find him a home before he faces the same fate as his family members.

Watch Lil' Balloon's rescue here.

Such a brave baby sweetheart, not once did he even struggle or try to bite. All he did was cry like a baby.

If you would like to help with his surgical bills / foster / adopt Balloon, please email us at hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg.

Thank you! *puppy eyes and slobbery kisses of gratitude from Balloon*

Written by : Weiling


Chester, How He Sneaked Into Their Lives

I got to know Chester when I first volunteered as a dog walker for Hope Dog Rescue last year.

I’ll be frank here and say that he is not an easy dog to manage because of his behavioural quirks, especially for a first time dog owner. I was initially hesitant to walk him on my own.

A few months into walking him, he suddenly developed a severe food allergy and had tummy troubles on top of bleeding from his penis (which we later found out was TVT - Transmissible Venereal Tumour). I felt that the boarding environment was not an ideal environment for him to recuperate. And so, I decided to foster him despite my parents not being very keen on the idea of having any pets in the house.

The initial plan was to foster him for only a short while. But, weeks turned into months and he crawled his way into my family members’   hearts with his crazy antics like chasing flies around the house. I’m just glad he didn’t destroy anything in the house because I was told he destroyed a sofa in his previous boarding place, oops! He also is a very smart boy that can pick up tricks very fast. He learnt “bang!” in 5 mins! (Watch his video here)

Deep down, he really is just a misunderstood dog that has acted out because of his insecurities, despite his "gangster bengster appearance". After a year of fostering Chester, I finally decided to adopt him. I hope he’s happy with being stuck with me for the rest of his life, haha!

Written by Chester's Foster and new Mama, Eileen Ho

Chester was a stray with a large head wound and ear problems when we found him in December of 2016. Fortunately we got him before the maggots did. He recovered, and his cheeky personality started to shine through. He was active and smart, but we also remember his mischievous side when he chewed up a sofa at boarding!

Today, Chester is happily settled and adopted by his young foster mama, Eileen.

Thank you Eileen, for adopting and 'sticking by him', even when Chester was unwell and dripping blood with TVT. We knew he was meant for you, and we can't be happier that both of you found each other.

We know there are families for every dog out there, it just takes time. Chester's story gives us hope.

By HOPE Dog Rescue


A Sad Start, A Happy Ending

Not too long ago, Cassie represented the tragic lives of strays in  Singapore. Today, she is doing exceptionally well and has even become  a guardian to adorable kittens, after being adopted and settling well  into a loving home.

Cassie and her new friends 

Cassie’s story began in Punggol some 5 years ago. She was a stray who  came under our care after she was discovered with a horrific wound on  the side of her neck. In fact, the trapper who trapped her was  originally doing work for another dog rescue group, but Cassie’s wound  was so bad that they offered to trap her for free.

The gaping wound at the side of her neck was one of the worst injuries  we had ever seen, and we could smell the maggots from a distance away.  Poor Cassie, a sweet and timid dog, had been attacked by her own pack,  and she was peeing and pooing everywhere out of fear.

Happy Birthday Cassie !

With proper treatment from a vet, Cassie soon recovered – but it was a  long process. Her lengthy journey to being whole again allowed us to  discover that she was the nicest, most innocent, playful and  easy-going dog we had ever come across. She got along with both people  and dogs. We couldn’t find a single fault with her!

Stories like Cassie’s gives us hope, and reinforces the fact that dogs  are truly amazing creatures. Despite a history of bad experiences,  they are often willing to trust and love again.


Read Cassie's backstory here.

Written by: Jeanine Tan


The Old but Gold; Charlie The Retriever

Last week the vet did two Fine Needle Aspirates on Charlie and both drew blood so the previous vet was concerned it might be something cancerous. Charlie's foster took him to see the Senior Vet on Monday.

After looking at Charlie's tail and elbows, the Senior Vet said that there is nothing to worry about the elbows as it is calluses due to applying pressure when he lies down. However, for the tail, it was most likely a Sebaceous Adenoma, a benign tumor affecting the dog's skin and occurs mainly in older dogs. Sebaceous Adenoma results from skin glands that produce skin oils. They are mostly found on the eyelids or limbs although it does appear on other parts of the body, and in Charlie's case, it is on his tail.

The Senior Vet mentioned that cancer usually starts spreading when we start doing invasive tests so he recommended to do a punch biopsy to minimize movements and refrain from aggravating the cancer cells, if that's what it is. There is also a possibility that Adenoma can become cancerous too.

Charlie was a good boy and allowed the vet to do the punch biopsy without fuss. He had to be fasted for the morning and his mind was probably on his meal after the tests!! You can see a tiny hole that was punch on the lump on his tail.

The results will be out in 10 days' time, we hope its nothing serious. Although with Charlie's age at 15 yrs old, there really isn't very much we can or want to do if anything at all, but to make him as happy & comfortable as he can till he rests forever.

The vet visit must have stressed poor Charlie out and he had a 3 minute seizure when he got home.

His vet bill cost $500 and any help would be very much appreciated. Please email hopedogrescue@singnet.com.sg. Thank you.