Cotton came to see us several weeks ago.
She was in the schedule for chiropractic because of a right front lameness (right front leg was being held off of the ground).
As part of our veterinary examination of Cotton, Dr. Barnhart took x-rays of Cotton's shoulder.
Cotton's right shoulder was dislocated. Good thing we took the x-rays!
Cotton's story helps us understand how a fairly young dog without a history of trauma came to dislocate her shoulder.
When Cotton first came to her person, this is what she looked like.
She had been a puppy mill dog for the first 5 years of her life.
During Cotton's developmental years, she wasn't afforded proper movement and exercises. The stimuli that are critical for proper development of the body.
Now she has a dislocated right shoulder, and both of her knees (stifles) are in rough shape as well.
She's just generally weak.
We have begun supportive, conservative care to help Cotton out, including chiropractic.
Happily, she is responding well and developing some strength and better use of her limbs.
At the same time, Cotton's person is exploring surgical options to correct the shoulder.
The goal, of course, is to return Cotton to a joyful life, fully participating in her family's activities.
Ironically, Cotton's person originally brought Cotton home as a foster, giving Pet Adoption League and Cotton a little break.
Looks like Cotton chose her person well.
Cotton's story reminds me of how resilient and resourceful our four legged friends are.
That part always strengthens my love for them.
Her story is also a strong reminder of who the victims of puppy mills really are.
These dogs are living beings who should be shown the honor and respect that they deserve.
Wherever you choose to get a dog, please, take the time and effort to insure that they are coming from a place where they have been afforded the loving care you are going to give them.
The only way that puppy mills and their negligent care will disappear is if we refuse to support them.
There are lots of reputable breeders, breed rescues and shelters that can help you find the right pet for your family.
In the meantime, we will continue to help Cotton and her family on their journey to wellness.