Pugs are notoriously needy little pudge-balls, finding adventure acceptable only when there is promise of a full food bowl and snugly couch to come home to. They downright demand to be spoiled and deserve nothing less. That is why the story of Helen, one of Pug Rescue of Sacramento’s newest rescued pugs, is so very shocking.
Helen was found trembling under a parked car in the large city of Oakland. She was frightened and alone until two women spotted her. They wanted to help. Helen refused to budge from the shadows of the car, but the women did not give up easily. They ran to their nearby apartment and brought out a bowl of kibble and waited patiently until the poor, sweet pug was coaxed out by the desire to eat. As Helen hesitantly ventured out, the women got quite a shock. They realized Helen was blind. She had one eye previously removed and her remaining eye had a gruesome injury. Pressure of a longstanding, untreated injury had caused the eye to bulge forward out of the socket. Some cruel person thought it was acceptable to throw a blind pug out on the streets, likely because they did not want to pay medical expenses to treat the eye… horrifically and disgustingly cruel.
The women brought Helen to a nearby animal shelter. Pug Rescue of Sacramento (PROS) was notified. The shelter, unfortunately with limited funds, could only offer PROS three days to find a foster home. PROS is a completely volunteer based organization and at that moment all of their regular foster homes were full. They were desperate to help this poor pug though and put out an urgent plea on Facebook. PROS assumed from past experience that it would not be easy to find someone willing to foster a blind pug on such short notice, but they just had to try. Amazingly, within moments of posting, floods of comments and support came in from around the world. And just like that, an approved foster home was found and Helen was released from the shelter into PROS’ care.
Helen’s foster parents were happy to have her, although her first few days were a bit pitiful. Helen remained frozen in the middle of the kitchen. She was too nervous to explore on her own. However, she found comfort in being held and talked to and slowly began to come out of her shell.
She has now been in her foster home for a little over a week and she has come quite far. She can find the water bowl and potty pads on her own. She has come to trust some of her foster brother pugs and enjoys snuggling with them and following them around the house. Day by day she gets braver.
While she is mending emotionally, she still has a long way to go physically. The vet diagnosed the injured eye as beyond repair and needing to be removed. But the list of surgeries for Helen did not end there. She will also need surgery on her nares, which are very narrow making it hard for her to breath. Sadly, while foraging blind on the streets it is likely she ate lots of rocks and she will need surgery to remove them. Helen’s first surgery to remove the eye is scheduled for next week. She is currently on antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, and pain killers in prep for the surgery. And, of course, she has been forced to wear the dreaded cone.
The vet believes she is only a couple years old. Still a baby and yet she has experienced so much hardship. It is time to turn that around!
PROS is currently fundraising for Helen’s many surgeries. If you would like to donate to her care, please visit the Pug Rescue of Sacramento website, where you will find a donation button for Helen on the homepage.
Helen made a star appearance at the garage sale PROS held to raise money for her surgeries:
She actually loved being held in this carrier. She even fell asleep!
She’s becoming a happy pug 😀