Just as an aside to Newt's mom's thread, as not to hijack it with my ramblings...
I can kinda see where she's coming from.
My first show dog was a lovely little yellow man, named Owen...I think he came along before I became real active on this board.. Bubbling with promise and sweet as a button, my baby Owee was pointed in his first show and placed 2nd in his class at his first specialty. I was so excited. He was 7 months old.
Two weeks later, three teeth fell out, and that was the end of his show career. But I wasn't happy with that. I had to know why. So off we went, dragging my little bitty boy, the happiest dog in the whole world to vet after vet, X-Ray after X-Ray. Specialist after specialist. It would have been so easy to send him back, to have never seen him suffering.
It seems Owen suffered from a degenerative bone disorder. His hip sockets were dissolving, his ribs fractured easily, and eventually, his skull began to collapse and the seizures started.
I lost him at almost 18 months old. 7 years ago, today.
This was him, at 4 months.
Not a day goes by that I don't think of that happy Owee face. In all his trials and tribulations, he never felt sorry for himself, and neither did I. Owen underwent hip surgery, and because of the degenerative nature of his disease, the screws and plates would not hold. I never, ever not ONE TIME considered feeling sorry for myself in all of that, because I lost my show dog.
I was new to the sport but I'd long been a dog lover. And most importantly, I understood that show potential was just that, POTENTIAL. No one can guarantee how a 7 week old puppy would mature.
After Mr Owen, I got lucky. My Ruby turned out well and I bred her once, 3.5 years later and ended up with 9 lovely perfect baby puppies.
Then reality hit and my keeper puppy, Ginny got too big to show. It wasn't the end of the world, she was a great obedience dog. The right home came along and I did place her, to which, no one here judged me for, some didn't understand the ins and outs, but that was what was best for Ginny. I never intended on placing her, but she was the kind of dog who never got attached to me and that made the decision much easier for me. Two years later, she is doing fantastically in her 'new home'. She goes to school everyday with her 'mom', and I see her often around town and I babysit her when her parents go away.
Next came Nola. Nola was a super healthy baby girl and two weeks later she wasn't. Steroids, antibiotics, X-Rays, parasite infestation, pain-killers were in the short term, and though she seems healthy now, and has done quite well at the dog shows, I worry everyday that there is still something 'wrong' with her. And there might be. So many if's. When we were treating her with steroids, we worried it would stunt her growth. Should she be bred? (ultimately, thats her breeder's decision, not mine) What if there are ramifications of her illnesses as a puppy? We just don't know. But she's my dog, and I am responsible for her.
So what's my point? Dogs are living breathing beings. And show potential is just that, potential. Some dogs hate being in the limelight, some carry their tails higher than standard, some are too small, some are too big. There are many reasons to re-home a dog, many good reasons, and many people out there are sitting and waiting for a dog who just didn't work out. My BF is waiting for a Wolfhound, one that didn't make it in the show ring... But IMO placing a dog with a medical problem is a cop out.
In Newt's case, if the HD is as bad as we've been told, he will probably be PTS. I simply cannot imagine someone who's world doesn't revolve around him and doesn't love him to pieces putting the time, money and effort in to make him better.
This is the reason why we all chuckle when guarantees insist you return the dogs to get money back or replace it with another puppy. We all know people shouldn't be able to do that. And no one will do that so those guarantees aren't applicable.
I really don't think show dogs should come with a guarantee. Of all people, show people should understand the potential for disaster.
I do feel like there is more going on in Newt's case. Most of it we don't and won't know. But the thing that keeps coming up is that there were two show dogs that didn't turn out and she can't keep them all. But the dumping a dog who has a handicap is NOT what show people do. The dogs are the top priority, fed the best foods, given the best medical care, trained to a T, kept in great physical condition etc etc etc.
If its not the priority, I suggest the OP get a prize goldfish.
Last edited by Luvmydog2much; 05-08-2012 at 11:03 AM.
'Don't grow up too quickly, lest you forget how much you love the beach.'
~ Michelle Held
Rhys, Ruby and Nola
As to the dog in question, I can almost guarantee that it will be put down as soon as it's returned. Sad, but it's a fact of life.
♣ Laura ♣
Heartbreaking story about Owen, Melissa.
Seamus and Flynn
He taught me more about dogs in his little life than any dog has since him, he was my heart.
Well said. Your story about Owen was absolutely heartbreaking BUT you did the right thing by him and in his short life he was loved and happy. That says so much about you.
Maxx & Emma Jean
Ozzy - 10/16/02 - 06/28/11 - Always in my heart.
Sometimes the hardest part isn't letting go - but learning to start over.
Thank you! Have no desire to EVER show - but just love my house pests to death!
Showing is more of an "ego" thing. The dogs couldn´t care less. The reason I go to show dog breeders when I get my dogs is because you "think" the dogs will be healthier because their parents have the cleareances. So far that has not been the case with most of my Labs (3 out of 4 of my labs have had joint problems). They didn´t come from the same breeders (except Misha and Homer, and Misha has been "thank god" an extremely healthy dog, whereas poor Homer has a heart murmur and ED).
At this point I seriously think god sends me these dogs (old Brownie with HD and Homer) because he knows I won´t abandon them and make sure to try to give them the best treatments available.
Still it breaks my heart to see my 3 year old Homer just laying by my side instead of having fun with Misha and Vermont. I´m a very active sporty person, we used to truly enjoy physical activity but Homer is just uncapable of doing anything other than a regular walk, and I won´t leave him behind, alone and take the others with me.
Just this morning, since Misha is in heat and staying at my friend´s house, Vermont and I were playing chase on the yard and I just felt terrible for poor Homer who wanted to join the chase and ended up limping after a first try. Its heart braking to see this young dog limited and becoming crippled.
Like I´ve said before, Labs are the best in temperament, the worst in health. Just looking at how Vermont runs, how flexible and agile he is compared to both my Labs is amazing. Poor poor Labrador Retrievers... plagued with deseases
The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. -- Gandhi
Thank you for that post. Poor Owen. I'm thankful he had you as his human.