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Buster—a Springer so gentle in nature, he even makes friends with squirrels.
We were tagged on a Facebook post pleading for help for an eleven-to-twelve-year-old senior boy named Buster who desperately needed a safe haven -- and fast. Without assistance, his “dad” was taking him to the vet in a few short days to end his life. They were moving and Buster was not part of the plan. An extended family member heard of Buster’s plight, and on Buster’s behalf, she quickly spread the urgency on Facebook begging for help. It was not Buster’s “time”!
Buster’s story is one of neglect. He suffered from untreated glaucoma in his left eye. Along with the bulging and tearing, along with the extraordinary pressure came constant migraine-like pain. His “good” eye was red, irritated and running. Buster was blind. Both ears had suffered long-term from chronically severe and painful infections--swollen and oozing pus. Even the slightest touch caused him to cry out. He suffered from untreated and infected tooth pain. He had a urinary tract infection and crystals present adding more discomfort and pain. He was unneutered and with an undescended testicle. His nails were grossly overgrown -- curled up, curled under making it impossible to walk, slipping and stumbling as he tried to maneuver around. He was overweight, had age-related arthritis and significant elbow dysplasia. All this, and never once given pain medication. He reeked from filth, his body was infested with fleas, his skin was itchy and infected from head to toe. His nose was coated with layers of crust. Somehow, he tested negative for heartworms. How this dog managed to maintain his most beautiful spirit is beyond amazing.
Once we got Buster cleaned up, he visited with a veterinary eye specialist. Advanced glaucoma with high pressures were confirmed in his left eye. The right eye, albeit red and irritated, was simply a cataract and fortunately no signs of glaucoma. He was started on twice-daily eye drops. The specialist felt Buster was a possible candidate for a successful cataract surgery gifting Buster his sight, something he had not experienced for a long time. A few weeks later, Buster was admitted for further and more extensive eye testing under sedation to confirm his candidacy. Yes! He was indeed a candidate! Buster celebrated.
The first course of action was to get his left eye removed ridding him of the pain as quickly as possible. He fared well through the surgery; his recovery was uneventful. And best yet, the pain was gone. While under, his infected tooth was removed, a mass on his lip was removed, and his ears were thoroughly deep cleaned. It took four rounds of ear packings and about two months to get them free of pain and stubborn bacteria.
Since then, Buster’s dropped twelve pounds, going from 57 pounds to 45 pounds, greatly improving his mobility and comfort. He’s quickly rebuilding long-lost muscle mass. In fact, he’s trotting around and around and rearing up on his hind quarters at meal time barking at the top of his lungs! He follows his foster mom anywhere and everywhere. He’s always on the move, so curious, so ready, and so eager to live again!
Buster underwent successful cataract surgery in January and has been released from the eye specialist's care. What a memorable moment for all when Buster "saw" for the first time! No longer is he tentative getting around, but instead he’s feeling confident and holding his head high. He now spends lots of time cruising the yard fearlessly.
Buster is relatively healthy given his past and his age. He will need to visit with an eye specialist every six months and remain on daily drops the rest of his life. He needs to remain lean to keep his arthritis at a minimum along with daily doses of joint supplements and an anti-inflammatory. He will require a senior vet visit every six months, as things can change quickly with older dogs much like humans. He will need to eat a nutritious, high-quality, healthy diet. His family will need to keep a close eye on his ears and clean them twice weekly with ear wash. With care, he has not had any ear infections since we cleared them up initially.
We would love his new family to even try some non-traditional medicine such as acupuncture and laser therapy on his back and joints. He is current on vaccinations, negative for heartworms and microchipped.
Buster is proven with all dogs, cats, and amazing with all humans including children. He is an easy, easy boy who has nothing but love to offer. We would like a family who can spent lots of time with him. He is housetrained and reliable when left alone.
It’s impossible to paint a full picture of Buster without mentioning his exceptional temperament and immeasurable capacity not only to love, but to forgive. He wiggles at every opportunity. Everyone’s his friend. Despite the horrific pain he was in, he willingly and easily allowed everyone to handle and treat him. In perfect Springer style, he’s always at your side. Every moment is an adventure. Where you are, he his. His original owner told us that he’d always been a gentle soul and shared that he even made friends with the squirrels. Sums up this lovely senior boy—it says it all.
If you think you can provide all that this perfect senior boy needs and deserves, please email his foster mom.
A special note regarding Buster and all of ESRA’s seniors:
Why adopt an older dog?
Most people go to a shelter or rescue organization wanting to adopt a puppy or a young dog. By adopting an older dog, you can make a statement about human compassion and the value of life at all ages. Older dogs are often the last to be adopted or the first to be euthanized at the shelter. Why should an older dog be left behind?
Dogs live in the present, as today is what's important to them. They don't tend to worry about what's around the next bend in the road. They just want to be happy and loved today! We all know there are no guarantees in life. The quality of time you have with your new companion can matter a great deal more than its quantity. Even if you have a senior dog for only a few years, the days you spend together will be precious!
You can give an older dog the best years of his/her life! Won't you please consider providing a loving home to a senior?
Please submit an Online Adoption Application if you are interested in Buster. It is always the first step in our adoption process.