Hank is not our traditional success story, his story is bitter sweet. It has been 1 year since we met Hank and six months since I posted this on Facebook. My eyes still fill with tears every time I see his picture. While we lost Hank’s battle, he will live forever in our hearts and on our success page because this little guy did not die on the street and he knew incredible love in his short life.
From our Facebook post on February 14th, 2016:
Our next post is bitter sweet. It is with great sadness and joy that we share that our adorable Hank has gone home to be with God. We helped him over the rainbow bridge last Monday. His liver was failing and there was nothing we could do to help him. Knowing that he was already sick and did not feel the way a young puppy should, we decided that rather than wait for him to decline and suffer, we chose to help him over the rainbow bridge. It was a very tough decision, but I know in my heart it was 100% the right thing to do for Hank.
Why share such a sad story on Valentine’s Day? Well, for us, Hank’s story is all about love and what love can do. When we found Hank he had just missed being hit by two cars and he was essentially dying of doggie ebola. As we worked to diagnose his issues we discovered that he had a rare disease that was most likely caused by head trauma. Where ever he came from, he had been terribly neglected.
He had diabetes insipidous amongst other fun things. That’s water diabetes. Never heard of it, me either, until Hank. He could not process water properly. As we worked to get that under control, the medical train wreck that he was kept giving us new challenges. But through it all, he was the most loving, appreciative dog.
We always knew that Hank might not make it, but we took the chance anyway. It just seemed the right thing to do because doesn’t everyone deserve a chance to feel safe and loved?
Hank showed his love and appreciation even when he was puny and sick. So many people pitched in to help him have a chance, and many more will cry as their hearts ache and mourn the loss of such a devilishly adorable friend.
Overtime, we haven’t lost many dogs that we tried to help, but all the ones we lost still died safe and having known love. For that, I am so thankful to all the people that help our rescues and give their time, resources, and talents. That connection and assistance creates even more love to celebrate and it fills my heart with joy.
And while we failed to help solve Hank’s medical issues, we are comforted knowing we showed Hank a good life where he was safe and ridiculously loved by his doggie friends, by friends and neighbors, and by me; and that is what Valentine’s Day is all about: unconditional love given, and accepted, freely.
Mr Hank, thanks for making me laugh, teaching me patience, and reminding me that no matter how damaged or broken any of us are, we are all worthy of love. Happy Valentine’s Day Mr Hank. Don’t tell the others, but you truly are my favorite rescue, now and forever. Goodbye my handsome Prince.
Hank’s Original Adoption Post———————————————————-
Meet Hank. He is stupidly adorable and I would absolutely keep this guy if I could…but we’re full and have no permanent spaces. I will cry my eyes out when he goes. I love this little guy.
What kind of dog is Hank? We’ve made a composite of Tasha the Husky, Trip, Dr May’s Australian Shepherd, and Julie and Connor’s Cardigan Corgi. So he might be Australian Corsky or a Australian Cardigan Husk-a-doodle. No matter how you put them together he’s adorable and looking for his forever family. He is about 6 months old and think he will grow to be about 40 lbs.
Hanks’ story: Hank was found crossing a 4 lane road in the middle of the afternoon. He was not on the day’s agenda. He was following a lady pushing a baby stroller. He was about 25 feet behind this family as it crossed the road. They made it safely across, but little Hank was lagging behind and almost hit by a car right before my eyes. So of course, I pulled over and asked the lady if it was her dog and she said no. I asked her if she could hold still for just a second as to help me catch him. She kept going, she was clearly afraid of him.
I caught Hank and loaded his muddy, wet, cuteness in the car. He didn’t know nuthin’ about no cars, so that took a while to get him in and shut the door. Strays are always wet, muddy, or gross in some way. And if they are not one or all of those things, they will inevitable poop or throw up in the car. That’s just the Universe’s way. As we were riding to the shelter, I looked over at the wet muddy puppy and told him that clearly, his farts did not smell like rainbows. Who knew, they smelt like foreshadowing.
This is not my first rodeo, so I generally ride around with a big towel on the front seat. To be honest, the loose dog thing has gotten so bad I also ride around with a snappy snare and a rabies pole, but that’s another story. Back to Hank…as I said, Hank had probably never been in a car before and he managed to get the towel off the seat and get wet muddy ewww everywhere. It is the Universe’s way.
As required by law, I started my process to make a good faith effort to find his owners. I took him to Dallas Animal Services (DAS) to have him checked for a microchip. Of course he did not have one. Whah whah whaa. Let me take this moment to remind everyone of the importance of microchips. If Hank had a $15 microchip, his journey would have been over and he would have been returned home in less than an hour from when I found him. Happy ending, but not today.
Here is another interesting point about loose dogs that we have learned the hard way over the years. Sometimes dogs are incredibly behaved. So incredible behaved that it makes people think he must have been someone’s dog. But not so fast for me, I have a different process for that assessment.
Now, Hank is probably part herder of some kind, part shepherd, and so he is going to be a fast learner and a very smart dog. But that combo also creates a very active, curious, puppy that needs to stay busy and keep its mind engaged and occupied. Hank was not getting into any trouble. He was pretty chill and just lay around at my feet. Our saying goes, if a dog is “the best dog you have ever seen – so behaved, attentive, and good”, the dog is probably half dead. And so here was Hank, a high energy mix breed puppy, sitting quietly at my feet. It was suspect. And as we started to quickly find out, it was true, adorable Hank was indeed half dead.
The Universe is a tricky mistress. My favorite rescues (not that I have favorites, they are all fabulous) are generally dogs who came to me with BIG challenges and required a lot of patience, tlc, and unconditional love. That’s the way The Universe balances out life.
The Universe makes the extremely sick ones so cute, so loving, and so adorable that you can’t help but to help them. And when you think “I can’t stand this one more minute – why am I doing this!?!” and you look down and see those adorable, trusting, loving little faces, all anger or frustration leaves your mind and it is replaces with unconditional love and kindness. And a small sense that you might be certifiably crazy.
Over the years, we have done distemper, antibiotic resistant kidney infections, trauma hernias, detached retinas, eye infections, mange, ringworm, bronchitis, prostate issues, cancer, hypothermia, heatstroke, bait dog injuries, motor vehicle injuries, broken tails, heartworm treatments, nebulizer treatments, starvation, behavioral issues….the list goes on and on. We take the animals knowing they are usually loose or homeless because of some complication that caused their owner to dump them or that caused them to not care that their pet went missing. In some cases the dogs never had a home and were born on our neighborhood streets.
When we take in a dog, we are committed to rehabbing the dog and we commit to whatever it takes to give them a fair chance at a loving forever home. Sometimes it is a quick turn around, sometimes it is months, and in Tasha’s case is has been years.
Hank is no exception to the mysterious question, “why is this adorable dog out loose roaming the neighborhood?” We quickly understood he was probably within 24 hours of dying when we found him and as we start to see his answers take shape, he also turned to be one for the “Laws of the Universe” record book.
On top of being one the MOST adorable dog and truly one of my favorites, his complication factor has incrementally grown alongside my uber love for him. It looks like Hank probably has diabetes insipsidus, otherwise known as “water diabetes” We are doing some further test to see which kind he may have. This is some rare business. Of course it is….
The best case scenario for this little guy is that he will have the treatable kind of diabetes insispidus. But the treatment is an expensive commitment. The medication tends to be around $70 a month. The medication should control his symptoms and he should be fine with treatment, but that cost is a lifetime commitment.
His other challenge at this time is that he can only eat home cooked chicken, rice, and eggs. He cannot tolerate story bought dog food. Oh drama, but he is handsome, loves to yodel, and will wear a raincoat.
These two things will be a big commitment for most people and will take Hank out of the running as your average adoptable puppy that can go to any good home. He needs a special home without budgetary concerns. We have hope that there may be the right person out there who does not find these challenges an issue or bothersome.
So Hank is looking for a financially independent family with an on staff chef. You are out there, I know it! OK, maybe he’s not that high dollar…but somewhere, someone will not mind cooking for this adorable guy and they will not be bothered by the base cost of owning him. When we find this person or family, or DINKS (you know who you are neighbors) they will be rewarded with the unconditional love from this amazingly smart, attentive, loving dog. Hank is seriously THAT adorable!
Hank is crate trained, potty trained, walks with manners on a leash, sits on command, and he likes other dogs. He is kid and cat friendly. He came out for a visit during the 4th of July block party and was not bothered by screaming kids, booming fireworks, or super soaker hoses spraying everywhere around him. He is a true patriot!
He likes to play, chase, wrestle, and play bear face. He is a herder and a hoarder at heart. He loves to sit with his person. You can hold him like a baby and he will go right to sleep.
Before we wrap it up – we want to give a big shout out to our neighbors Annalisa, Julie, Conor, and to GDO alum Lura’s Mom, Dhyana. The gently used donated towels and blankets have come in handy! Figuring out a puppy has a sensitive stomach and “water diabetes” takes A LOT of loads of wash if you know what I mean.
Please help Hank by sharing his story so he can find his forever family! If you would like to donate to Hank’s care (he has run up a pretty good tab to date via tests, blood work, and medicines) please use our “donate” button on the right hand side of the Gypsy Dog Ops website. We use Pay Pal for your convenience and security. Thank you for your love and care of our homeless and neglected neighborhood animals. It will take all of us helping in the ways we can to make a difference for these helpless animals.