Published on September 01, 2013
"Special" pets up for adoption: OSPCA volunteer foster parent Pat Borax kneels with Christy, a three-legged black Labrador Retriever mix and OSPCA inspector Bonnie Bishop. The local OSPCA wants Christy, Olivia and and a British Bulldog, their new animals with special needs, to find a happy home.
Published on September 01, 2013
"Special" pets up for adoption: OSPCA volunteer foster parent Patricia Levac (middle) holds Olivia, a three-month-old domestic shorthair kitten missing a back leg, as OSPCA inspector Bonnie Bishop (left) and an OSPCA animal care attendant kneel with a five-year-old British Bulldog up for adoption.
By Adam Brazeau
CORNWALL, Ontario – Pat Borax has fostered over 100 pets for the local animal shelter, and her latest, Christy, a three-legged black Labrador Retriever mix, has been a special experience.
Four-month-old Christy is one of three special needs animals at the Cornwall branch of the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) looking for a home.
“She’s amazing. You realize the limitations and you go with it,” said Borax, from Long Sault. “It’s been a learning experience for me, since it’s my first animal missing a leg.”
Having her front left leg amputated just a week ago didn’t stop the energetic pup from giving a warm welcome to every passerby at the local animal shelter.
“We couldn’t do the work we do without the foster families we have,” said OSPCA inspector Bonnie Bishop.
Borax said Christy is almost "ready to go" and is climbing up stairs already. The adorable pooch still has some difficulty getting around, as she adapts to life after surgery. Her and Bishop acknowledged that Christy, along with two other special needs arrivals, will be great "house pets" for middle-aged animal enthusiasts.
Christy’s arrival was part of an unusually high intake of pets with missing limbs and pre-existing injuries that resulted in amputation at the OSPCA.
The other special pets include Olivia, a three-month-old black shorthaired domestic kitten missing a back leg. The tiny feline was left in the road after being hit by a car. And a five-year-old British Bulldog, who had an eye removed due to complications with glaucoma.
Olivia is in foster care until she's finished being rehabilitated and the bulldog is at the OSPCA.
“They’re not quite ready,” said Bishop. “That’s why we want people to know about them, so we have time to look over applications.”
Patricia Levac has been nursing Olivia back to health and is astonished by the speedy recovery of the courageous cat.
“She’s energetic,” said Levac. “She loves to play. She loves to cuddle.”
Bishop said a lot of people feel squeamish when an animal is missing a limb or has a disfigurement. She said some foster parents prefer not to have animals with special needs, due to a fear of being unable to properly facilitate the rehabilitation process.
Having had three dogs with missing limbs, she encourages pet lovers to embrace the animals as they are.
“They’re absolutely great pets,” said Bishop. “These animals are normal and they see themselves that way.”
The cost of adoption is $320 per dog and $180 per cat. The OSPCA inspector said the price seems steep to some, but she is adamant that you won’t find a value like that anywhere else.
The cost covers pets being spayed, neutered, vaccinated, deflead, dewormed and microchipped. The overall expense for the OSPCA is $503 per dog and $447 per cat.
“Our business is to find permanent homes for animals,” said Bishop.
If you’re interested in adopting one of these special pets, contact (613) 936-0072 or visit www.sdg.ontariospca.ca.