Bebe and Jackie in the Halls of Hope warehouse, before they came to us here at Pomrescue.com. Please click on the link on the right to see more photos of what the ADLF is doing for the rescued puppy mill dogs in Sanford, NC. (the mill bust and rescue is the mill that our Tracker Jack, Bebe, Tracker Jackie and Nikoli came from.)
Tracker Jackie and Trapper, free at last
VICTORY! Update on the case of the puppy mill that Tracker Jack,Tracker Jackie, Bebe, Trapper,(aka Nikoli), Natsha, Bubba, Sassy Pants, Corki, and all the other puppy mill survivors came from. In the criminal case, both puppy millers were found guilty of animal cruelty and were sentenced to 45 days in jail, suspended, 1 year's supervised probation, 5 years of unsupervised probation, and not a single animal in their possession for the period of probation. All of the animals remaining on their property were ordered confiscated. In the civil case,they lost again. No monetary damages were ordered, but this never was about money. Every finding of the judge applied to both cases. The opposing attorneys argued in closing that 19-A, which formed the basis of the civil action, was unconstitutional and that there was no other state law in the U.S.that allowed any citizen to bring suit, charging animal cruelty.
Summary:The puppy millers were found guilty, dogs were confiscated, the precedent of standing of 19-A has been set, and N.C. has animal cruelty laws now, protecting animals, that don't exist in any other state. Our Mary JO(OUR meaning everyone involved in this process- not just PomRescue.com, I was just a very small fry in this whole process) dedicated 'court reporter' wrote this. "A notable NC VET during the court proceedings described the conditions at the puppy mill as appalling, based on photos, videos, medical records, and testimony of witnesses he reviewed. He noted poor sanitation, ocular lesions, permanent isolation, and visible wounds. The ammonia levels were 21-41 parts per million, ranging from the odor from a freshly opened bottle of Mr. Clean, to very toxic levels. He said that each animal whose photograph he saw was in unrelenting pain. He said that inflammation itself was proof of pain and that all mammals felt pain in the same way. Dogs, however, demonstrate pain differently than humans. They are unable to describe their pain and these dogs had no opportunity to have their attention diverted from chronic pain. Studies in humans and animals show that chronic pain can be better tolerated if the individual's attention is diverted. These animals have no diversion - they see the 4 sides of wooden crates and the building's ceiling, when wood covering is lifted. Buildings are dark - no relief at all from suffering. Animals in acute pain (sudden injury, etc.) will yelp or run from the source. However, chronic pain in unrelenting and, as in humans, dogs attempt to avoid exacerbating the painful area. Chronic pain is extremely debilitating in dogs, causing depression and compromised immune systems. His testimony was heart-breaking and very strongly worded. He was asked by the judge how he studied and evaluated pain. The Dr. said that the owner of a dog could sometimes not recognize chronic pain, but could see the difference when the pain was successfully treated. Owners typically said that these dogs, who had become increasing lethargic over time with unrelenting pain, suddenly became puppies again, regardless of age." Mary Jo also noted "The conditions on the property made any treatment impossible and even a cursory examination difficult. The ammonia levels were very high and the lighting was so bad that they used the flashes from their cameras to light crates and cages so that they could determine how many animals they contained. The odor and lack of ventilation were terrible(thank you Mary Jo for helping me to feel like I was there)
Tracker Jack . He had pneumonia, ring worm, diarrhea, bruising, ear mites and leg problems
MSNBC aired the National Geographic Ultimate Explorer episode "Love Those Dogs"
This program shows film footage of the puppy mill where Tracker Jack, Sassy Pants and Bubba were rescued and features Tracker Jack and Bubba as their rescue takes place.
Please share their stories with your friends and family. Let them know that this is where dogs in pet stores come from, and encourage everyone to look into adoption.
It is so important that we get the word out that pets should not be bought from pet stores. Pet stores are supplied puppies from puppy millers who only care about how much money they can make. They have no interest in the genetic defects that can be passed on to poorly bred animals.They are not worried about sickness that the poor unhealthy puppy is likely to get. They are not worried about who buys the animal and if it goes to a good home. The parents are probably poorly fed, poorly cared for and housed like chickens in cages stacked one on top of the other in some dark filthy building. They are in the pet breeding business for one reason only - to make money! If we stop buying pups from pet stores and teach others to do the same thing we will dry up the revenue for the millers and they will have to turn to other methods of profit.
Here is a bruise, the shape of a hand print on his back.
The only tooth left in Tracker Jack's mouth. Covered in plaque and as big as a shark's tooth, it had to be removed.
Tracker Jack from the box A true story of Jack's rescue from his puppy mill. To myself I call what we did- 'Justice for Jack' After you read this I hope you will catch the passion that we feel and why we feel so urgent about what we are doing. My mother drove me all the way to Murrells Inlet, SC to meet with representatives of a puppy mill rescue group. They were carrying precious cargo from South Port, NC. I called him 'Tracker Jack', sort of like the yummy snack, Cracker Jack. Tracker lived his whole life in a wooden box at a NC puppy mill. His backside was so caked with feces when the volunteers got him, he could not even defecate. When he was cleaned up, his poor rear was raw. He had been cared for in rescue at least 3 weeks by the time I got him. Jack had a really bad infected tooth. The infection reaching into the nasal passages. He was able to have the awful tooth pulled. The actual tooth was very tiny, but the plaque built up on it made it look like a sharks tooth. I have photos of this. He also had a rattley chest. He had trouble breathing and his tongue was really bluish purple with some congestion in his chest. He got winded really easily. His rattley chest was diagnosed as Pneumonia. My Vet could not see us over the weekend so I started him on some medicine for the infection. His ears wear full of black gunk and ear mites and medicated his ears. While I was cleaning the black gunk out of his ears, he became limp and I thought I was going to have to take emergencies measures to keep him alive. This was the case for the Vet while they pulled his tooth. I think it may have scared them too. When giving a pill the Vet noticed that during times of stress something covers his trachea, cutting off his oxygen causing him to become lifeless and his tongue to turn blue. We believe it is scarring from years of breathing that fetid putrid air in the box. His stools were bloody and loose. In order for him to eat, I had to prop him up and mash his food up and help him get it down. His lower jaw was atrophied, and crooked with his tongue forever hanging out the side. I also bathed him in shampoo and soaked him in a warm baking soda bath. That helped with the strong horrible unmistakable puppy mill smell. He had dark purple patches on his skin underneath the very coarse, sparse hair. He seemed to have some type of fungus on his skin, probably due to exposure and filth. This turned out to be a severe case of ringworm, which affected my family as well. At the Veterinarians, one of the first things the technician noticed was the scarring in the shape of a handprint on the pink skin of his back. As if he had been grabbed numerous times by the millers by just his little body. His hair was so sparse you could see right through it. Keep in mind that this was in the January cold. I have photographs showing this. His nails were long and dead looking and the ends of his paws dark. He gets cold easy. His feet seem to stay cold. I would not have been surprised if he had been heartworm positive, one of the other mill pups tested positive. He was given a dewormer which produced plenty of results Both of his back knees had luxating patella's, and he had a bad front knee. To walk, he sat up and I lifted him to his feet and stretched his legs and placed his feet. Otherwise he would just sit and turn in circles. The Vet recommended he have a soft palate vesechia while he was under having his chryptorchid neutering. Yes- after all poor Jack has been through, he did have a retained testicle. Dr. Hurlbert had to perform the surgery with him on his belly working upside down in order to keep his oxygen going. He was able to have just one incision and she was able to move the abdominal testicle out through that incision. However when he was in surgery she found that it wasn't the palate that was elongated but scar tissue in his throat. He had lots of folds of tissue in the back of his throat, as though he had some kind of trauma to that area. My thoughts are: either someone had attempted to debark him with a rod, or years of breathing filthy, stagnant air in that small box in the puppy mill had built up scarring on the tissue. It is also a possibility that recurring untreated kennel cough or pneumonia might have contributed to this also. The good news was- he did not have heartworm. He was given antibiotic for the pneumonia, and a special shampoo for the ring worm which is a fungus that causes skin problems and can be contagious. I had been treating him for that so already he had shown marked improvement. It took the test nearly two weeks to show results. He was also given an antacid for the stomach problems and other medicine to help with the bloody stools. Tracker Jack was taking several medications a day. I have wondered how Tracker Jack ate at the puppy mill. Here I crush his medicine and put his drops in canned pumpkin, peanut butter, canned lamb and rice and other tidbits to make it tasty. I am adding Nutridrops also. It needs to be a certain consistency in order for him to eat it with no teeth. He was small, weighing only 4.8lb. Now he is 5.2lb. Now on to his real self- I am not sure what I was expecting, but I think I thought he would be shy, unsociable, and sullen after all his abuse. Boy- nothing could have been further from the truth! What he was on the outside was very different from the lovely little boy on the inside. 'Tracker Jack' was the happiest, sweetest, most lap loving baby. He was full of energy, spunk, and nothing seems to scare him. He took right up with the other guys. There was not a single growl or lifted lip. I am guessing he was not older than 8. It was his pitiful mouth that made him seem older. When he was not worrying with his awful tooth he looked at you with the most bright intelligent eyes, and smiled. He followed me everywhere. He watched me with the most adoring eyes and even though he kind of got stiff and many times yelped as you were picking him up, he loved to be held. It was so hard for me to understand why he would be so sweet when he was so mistreated. I was told he came from a dark, stinking, windowless, building that had cages about 3'x5' with six or seven dogs in each box. They were just standing all over each other. The miller would reach in and grab them by any body part she could get a hold of and pull them out. There was a dumpster like thing close by- we can only imagine what they must have thrown in there. The most remarkable thing happened on one of his first nights with us. I was putting an extra blanket down in his bed and was on my knees straightening it out. As I was talking to him and telling him I never wanted him to be cold again, he walked over and gave me three little butterfly kisses on my cheek. I was so surprised I began to cry. Even my husband got all teared up. It was amazing. It was as if he knew everything I was saying to him. This has been very emotional for me. I had to battle inside to get over the anger I felt at what had been done to Jack at the puppy mill. One night I went downstairs to heat a cup of tea for 2 min in the microwave and by the time I got back upstairs (only 2.5 min later) Jack was in a panic! The other pups were up here with him and everything was fine, but the psychological damage of what has been done to him is just beginning to surface. I suppose in his mind, when I went out of sight I was abandoning him forever. I wish there was a way I could have made him understand, that he will never be left forever again. He went to sleep looking at me, with that precious little tongue sticking out, and my hand on his back. I spoke with my Vet about Jack falling asleep whenever you hold them, and she said it could be a submissive response. My opinion is, that things have been so bad for him, that when they are thinking something is going to happen, they 'zone out', sort of like taking their minds away from the circumstances. One day I took a nap on the couch, I had a pup at my feet, one over my head, one on the back of the couch and Jack asleep in my arms. If I would think too hard about what has happened to Jack, I get so upset, I can't think about it. I just have to get down to the business of taking care of the rescues and bringing them back to health and happiness. When my sister came to visit me and met Tracker Jack for the first time, he had been with us three weeks.. He ran behind a wall when he saw her come in. Then I picked him up - and he would not look her in the eyes, trembling with fear. I held him close as he relaxed and then I showed her the scarring of the handprint on his back, his dead toenails, sparse dry hair, the black skin from the fungus on his feet and his ears. I told her the story that the rescuers had told me of the puppy mill; the dark building, filthy, stinking boxes, full of dogs, standing in their own waste, all begging to be taken. Then I told her that I was thankful for Tracker Jack's condition, as the rescuers had chosen the weaker sick looking ones, in hopes that they could save them, and possibly keep them from being thrown in the big green metal container. Jack just looked at us as we talked, with that sweet, all knowing expression. His little cute tongue sticking out as always. He was alive. He made it. He made it through his surgery. He made it HOME. We have to do more to see to it that more get out of mills. That more of the puppy mill dogs get home where they are safe and loved. One morning I forgot to move slowly and I reached to pick Jack up from behind with out warning him. He gave an awful yelp, as he thought someone was going to hurt him. Poor boy, I didn't have any idea what he has been through. A big milestone was when he first wagged his tail!!! Tracker Jack stood there and looked at me and there it went back and forth, back and forth, then stopped. I reached down and gently picked him up trying hard not to cry. This was the first time I had seen this little boy actually wag his tail. I suppose life in a puppy mill doesn't give you much practice at tail wagging. It was a funny little tail. Almost hairless on one side with dry brittle hair on the end. Poor nutrition and filthy, damp living conditions took a toll on his poor little body, including his tail. I never thought I would get so excited, or much less write about such a simple thing as tail wagging, but then again, I had never had a puppy mill rescue. In the years to follow, we gave Tracker Jack plenty to wag his tail about! Another big milestone was when he first RAN!!!! It was the most amazing thing. I had the pups in the back yard while the sun was shining and it was fairly warm. Tracker Jack has been sort of toddling around on his wobbly legs. Timber was racing back and forth beside the fence. It must have looked like so much fun that he decided to try it. Next thing I knew he was running. He ran half the length of the yard. The reason I am so excited is that this little fellow was just two days post-op, may not have even known how to run, and surely never had the opportunity to run- living his life in 'the box.' Can you just imagine how the grass must feel to his little black toes? Can you just imagine filling your lungs with clean fresh air after a lifetime of breathing the acrid air of 'the box'? Can you just imagine how the sun must have felt on his little, almost hairless back after living years in the dark? The very things we take for granted, Tracker Jack showed me anew with his soft brown eyes. Warmth, good food, clean water, security, freedom, health care, some one to love us, and care for us. A recipe that all creatures great and small - want- and yes- need, in order to not just survive, but to thrive. Yes- Jack ran that day, not as fast as the others, but he ran, and he was free and in the sun. That was a good day for Tracker Jack and for me ...... Elaine Harris PomRescue.com, Inc