Alaska, the Belle of the Ball
‘Tis better to have loved and lost, than to never have loved at all…’ is my only solace at this moment. This line keeps me company in my gravest of hours.
If you hadn’t learned about the story of Alaska, it is of most interest to watch the video below. Alaska was exiting the earth when she was found. She was breathing her last breaths and viewing her last scene. And that was when we came into the picture.
The maggots wriggled in and out of her head and they squirmed along her face. She was the victim of severe neglect and starvation. She was the victim of a sick human who selfishly cared for only his being, who did not look past himself, who did not feel empathy, who did not acknowledge other life. She was the victim of a dangerous civilian.
First aid was administered by the veterinarian and then the rest was left to us.
As the days passed, Alaska ate good food, she received love and respect and she got the proper rest needed. As the days passed Alaska began to come alive, to revive. She began to prance. She began to seek attention from the caretakers. She began to act like a normal healthy dog.
She was my “Xanax” as I would say and every day watching her blossom into this beautiful creature gave me strength and light and meaning behind our work.
This animal that we had found in a horrid state was making a turn around and we were proud of her. We were proud of her determination and proud of her lack of self-pity.
What we hadn’t realized was that in her final days along that roadside, with her immune system so suppressed, she had caught a vicious virus.
Distemper is a killer for canines. It is in the vaccination schedule we give our owned animals. It attacks the animal’s body in a ravenous way targeting and destroying whatever it finds in front of it, usually the respiratory system or the nervous system but not only. Alaska had been infected yet the symptoms would take weeks to show. And we were clueless to this.
As far as we were concerned, we were on a path to miraculous recovery.
Alaska played, she sunned herself, she ate well, her fur began to grow, her character began to show.
We watched her, enamored by her metamorphosis.
And then it hit. It began with a cough.
Alaska went to the doctors. Doctors, plural. We took her to three. We received no real diagnosis. We had no responses to the therapies prescribed. She went on cortisone, she went off cortisone, she took anti biotics, she took anti-inflammatories, with no change, the cough got worse.
We could not watch her labored breathing any longer and we did not want to continue blindly with the medications. We did not want to lose this animal after seeing her bounce back from death.
Tatyana and I packed our bags and went to Athens.
Alaska was taken first to Alphavet where a CT scan was done on her head, chest and abdomen. She was then admitted to Plakentia Veterinary Clinic, the most state of the art clinic in Greece. They examined every inch of her. She had a rhinoscopy, a bronchoscopy, two biopsies, she was tested for toxoplasmosis, dirofilaria, she had blood tests, biochemical tests, she had tissue culture and a distemper test.
Her distemper test came back positive.
Alaska was put in an oxygen cage and administered a cocktail of antibiotics and other medicines. Her test results showed that the distemper destroyed her left lung and crippled her intestinal function. She stayed at the clinic for two weeks until stabilized. That was when Tatyana went back and picked her up.
Alaska couldn’t go to the shelter fresh out from the hospital. She shouldn’t go back to the shelter at all. She needed the quiet and personal care of a home. Shanice Winston (who had fostered for us before) took her in. She stayed with Shanice for a while in the suburbs and then moved in with Amalia, our volunteer in the middle of the city. She learned to live IN a house, she learned that she liked to sit on a couch, she loved to sleep in her person’s bed.
Amalia had made her a city girl. Alaska loved to roam the city and visit the city parks. She loved to make friends with the city dogs always over friendly and bursting with excitement. Alaska loved Amalia’s boyfriend Tasso and chose him over everyone when she had the chance.
Seven months had passed since the day that she came out of the hospital. A full seven months of life. Normal dog life. But the impact of the virus caught up with her.
Today we had to put Alaska down. We had to put down that marvelous creature, that inspiration.
The virus had gotten the best of her and very quickly the suffering would become great.
Today we say goodbye to one of the most remarkable beings we have ever encountered.
We have everyone to thank who helped us keep her. Our biggest thanks to Amalia who held her in her last moments.
Thank you, Alaska. Thank you for showing us what it means to be selfless and carefree. Thank you for showing us that we can overcome pain if it means to savor the moment.
We are so very sorry for the life you led before us. We hope that the time you spent in our care erased your dreadful past.
Thank you, Alaska.
You were worth every ounce of effort to make your life better.
And we would all do it all over again if it meant we would have the chance to keep you longer.
In a heartbeat, we would do it all over again.
She is doing amazingly well!
Coughing might come once a day.
Walking the whole city.
Thank you Amalia!
She is fine (considering her ailment), her coughing is down to once a day, when she sleeps heavily.
She is comfortable, eats well, has her zoomie moments and is madly in love with her foster dad Tassos.
If ever I fell so deeply in love with an animal, it’s Alaska.
She is such an inspiration.
She has a family who is interested in her but it is still not time yet for her to go anywhere. Hopefully they will be patient.
We love you Alaska
Huge thank you to Shanice for being that special, caring, generous and gracious person, always.
Shanice has taken Alaska in to foster her and administer her therapies till we can get her somewhere permanent. We are looking for someone to forever foster.
That means you take her into your home, we provide you with everything you might need, meds, vet visits, etc. And she stays with you for the rest of her life. Consider it.
Our girl is sleeping in a home tonight. IN a home. I don’t think she ever slept IN a home.
I love this animal beyond words.
Goodnight Alaska. Thank you Shanice.
Alaska’s coming home tomorrow.
Alaska was diagnosed with distemper in Athens.
She was already infected when we admitted her in the shelter, (thank God we are so strict on vaccination schedules and puppy quarantining otherwise this would have been a catastrophe).
She began to show severe symptoms by the twentieth day.
She had seen four local vets and since we had administered too many therapies with zero results we decided to take her to Athens, to Plakentia Clinic, a state of the art animal hospital with all the equipment and staff needed to diagnose an animal fully.
She had endoscopies, biopsies and extensive bloodwork.
Her lungs are in a poor state but hopefully with the therapies given now, she will be comfortable and able to enjoy some quality time.
Alaska will be fostered in a private home temporarily. But she does need a permanent home.
Alaska will not live a full life. Her condition will at some point get the best of her but until then she is still able to love and play and completely ignore you as Huskies so cleverly do.
Open your heart and your home to this animal.
She deserves the world.
We would be willing to cover any medical expenses needed in the future.
We had a scare last week.
Alaska began to cough blood. Terrifying.
We administered the first therapy with no results.
It was so heartbreaking to see Alaska in her doghouse, not her usually wired self.
Great news is her second therapy is working better. She is getting an inhaler and some cough medicine. And she is doing super!
All of our animals see vets FOR EVERYTHING.
There are no skimming corners when it comes to the well being of our animals. They are our house dogs. Whatever you would do for your animal at home, we do for ours, all 90 of them.
Please consider this when deciding to support us.
Your donations are put to good use. Real good use.
You allow us to insure a long, healthy, happy life for each and every animal that crosses our door.
Alaska was abandoned, half dead on the side of the road.
Alaska is now at the Souda Shelter. She was born about August 2018.
She is leishmania negative; she does NOT have it.
We opted not to send her to a foster and to keep her near us because her ears need special washings daily.
I think she is looking much better, not even 24 hrs after being in our care, wouldn’t you say? (Video taken yesterday).
Be a part of our project.
Adopt. Donate. Share.
The Souda Shelter Project❤️
Alaska was abandoned, half dead on the side of the road.Alaska is now at the Souda Shelter.We opted not to send her to a foster and to keep her near us because her ears need special washings daily.I think she is looking much better, not even 24 hrs after being in our care, wouldn't you say? (Video taken yesterday).Be a part of our project.Adopt. Donate. Share.The Souda Shelter Project❤️
Julkaissut Elizabeth Iliakis Maanantaina 10. elokuuta 2020
Her ears were not cut, they have either been scratched badly due to an ear infection or ear mites or it could be skin cancer, tied in the sun with no shade. We see…
Look at those eyes.
Once upon a time they were the talk of the town.
Today they can’t save her…or can they?
Look into those eyes and tell her that she is safe. Tell her that she is loved.
I’m pretty sure that she was “belle of the ball” when she was shiny and new. They probably even spent a pretty penny to get her. But now her paint is not shiny anymore and from the years of neglect, her body is destroyed. Where else to put her but out on the street.
Adopt. Foster. Share.
The Souda Shelter Project
Look at those eyes. Once upon a time they were the talk of the town.Today they can’t save her…or can they?Look into those eyes and tell her that she is safe. Tell her that she is loved.Adopt. Foster. Share.The Souda Shelter Project
Julkaissut Elizabeth Iliakis Sunnuntaina 9. elokuuta 2020