Prima the Pom – Little Dog with a Big Heart

Prima, a four-year-old Pomeranian mix, arrived at the San Francisco SPCA homeless and suffering from Patent Ductus Arteriosus, a heart problem preventing her body from getting enough oxygen. Upon her arrival at the shelter, she was immediately transferred to the SF SPCA’s veterinary hospital because of excessive panting (a side effect of the heart problems she was experiencing).

Without surgery, Prima was not expected to live a full life, but with heart surgery she was given a good prognosis for a normal, healthy life without needing any supportive medication.

The SF SPCA launched a campaign to raise the $3,500 that was needed for Prima to receive medical care from a heart specialist. And because of the community’s generous support, we reached our funding goal in just two weeks!

Prima and friends

Prima (at right) with her canine buddies in Redwood Park. She’s enjoying a bully stick, one of her favorite treats that she couldn’t have before the surgery because of the sodium content.

Prima received surgery at the UC Davis Veterinary Hospital, where she became a staff favorite. With the care and support of UC Davis veterinarians and her foster mom she made a quick recovery. Prima still has a heart murmur, but it is much smaller and her energy level is greater than before the surgery. Fortunately, there’s no longer a fear that she will go into heart failure anytime soon.

When asked to describe how surgery had changed Prima, her foster mom said, “Emotionally, she’s still the same loving dog she was before her surgery, but she has more energy and with it and more Pomeranian attitude! She wants to go everywhere we go, and loves car rides, walks and any attention she can get. Prima has come to love her doggy friends, and she is especially close with my tiny Chihuahua. They spend their downtime cuddling and bouncing off each other (because they’re too furry to wrestle).”

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Joaquin Update

Joaquin in a basketJoaquin came to the SF SPCA with two broken legs, a punctured eye, and a fractured tail. We don’t know what happened to Joaquin, but we often don’t know medical histories with transfers from other shelters. We do know that despite his multiple fractures, he was a playful, loving cat who was full of life. To help cover the cost of Joaquin’s medical treatment, the SF SPCA launched a fundraising campaign.

We wanted to share with our supporters the below update, which we received from Joaquin’s new guardian.

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Joaquin continues to be amazing. It’s incredible to find so much joy in such a tiny package.

After adopting Joaquin, we took him to an orthopedic specialist who confirmed what the SF SPCA had already advised – that despite Joaquin’s fractures having healed crooked while living on the streets and his eye being removed, the best thing to do for him was to just let him be a kitten. So, that’s exactly what Joaquin does every day – he enjoys being a kitten, with a swagger that is all his own!

Joaquin and BrandyDespite being the smallest member of our family, Joaquin rules the house. He is always front-and-center for the day’s events, no matter what’s going on. His best friend is our 9-year-old orange tabby, Mr. Kittles. When he’s not following Mr. Kittles around, Joaquin is our little shadow. If you’re scooping the litter box, he insists on assisting. If you open a screened window, he sprints to excitedly gaze out into the busy streets. If you’re vacuuming, he’s most likely watching (no hiding under the bed for this cat). If you’re watching Monday night football, so is Joaquin. He loves to play hide-and-seek in the house or fetch with his cat toys. His favorite guilty pleasures are trying to climb the curtains, or sneakily scouring the recycling bin for possible leftovers, before someone tells him to stop. Day after day, Joaquin bounces with excitement for the day – he is fearless and fun and he LOVES LIFE! Finally, when it’s time for bed, he crawls under the covers to sleep with us all night.

We absolutely adore Joaquin, and we like to think that he loves us. Every day, when we get home from work and are greeted at the door by our sweet and rambunctious kitten, we are reminded that he is the perfect addition to our family. We are so grateful to the SF SPCA for saving his life and allowing us to welcome him into our own lives.

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Mabel, Flourishing

MabelJean adopted Mabel back in 2006 and has been in love with her ever since. As you can see in the left side of the photo, Mabel was quite skinny and her coat was in poor shape when she was first adopted. But with lots of TLC and attention from Jean, Mabel flourished into a beautiful cat. Mabel loves to play chase and hide and seek. She’s also quite loving and affectionate.

Jean and Mabel have formed a very strong bond. Jean wants the best for Mabel, which is why she has enrolled Mabel and her other pets into the San Francisco SPCA’s Sido Program. Pets enrolled in the Sido Program will be cared for and adopted out should they outlive their guardians. Mabel is certainly living the good life now!

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Millie the Affection Eater

Millie in the window seatMillie is our “Foster Fail.” She is an extreme affection eater. I must get down on the floor on my hands and knees by the food dish, make “nom-nom” sounds and sing silly songs. Millie will nuzzle up against me and hop on my back until she gets her purr up – then she will eat… as long as I stay there and continue this encouragement. If I omit some steps or rush the process she will ignore the food and just go back playing with her toys or the other cat. She tells me loudly when she is hungry but will not eat until we do the affection ritual. Hugging her before feeding also helps. She is also a burrower – blankets, rugs, and when she was a kitten, my pajama sleeves. By the way, did I tell you that I love all this silliness?

- Marian

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Scruffy Love

DuckieI adopted Duckie (originally Deckie) back in January. At the time, I was looking for a partner in crime, and I found the best little four-legged friend I’ve had since I was a little girl. We had some bathroom issues and separation anxiety in the beginning, but once he realized he could relax, that I wasn’t going to give him up, those problems are almost in the past.

He had a rough start at the beginning of the year, but with several hundred miles of road trips together and many more planned, the upcoming year is looking to be even better for him. Waking up to him sleeping next to me every day or him being so excited to see me when I come home has been worth the accidents, and I can’t wait to see what we get ourselves into in the future!

- Autumn

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