Muskwa suffered severe frostbite

Feb. 16/17: Muskwa’s Rescue Story (warning: details and photos are graphic). SCARS received a call about a dog that showed up at a rural home in terrible pain and misery. Our volunteer arrived to see a dog desperately rubbing his head along the ground. He would stop and shake his head from side to side, his ears completely wet. His eyes were all yucky and his nose was rough and dry. She loaded him up for transport straight to our partner vet clinic in the area.
The vet who examined Muskwa could not recall ever seeing ears infected this badly. The whole channel was affected on both ears. As well, his scrotum was frostbitten and oozing. His legs, front and back, were also frostbitten and his abdomen was covered in pustules. He was in a lot of pain, but he was such a good boy through it all. He had to be put under anesthetic as his ears were too painful to be cleaned and flushed. Cytology indicated a bacterial infection so he is now on antibiotics as well and eye and ear medication. The vet team is hopeful that he has not lost his hearing, but time will tell. Please donate to SCARS so we can continue to help dogs like Muskwa.
Feb. 19 update: Amittedly we use images of cute puppies to entice people into becoming foster homes. That’s not the whole story though. It’s a whole different reality when you take in a dog that was likely 24 hours away from death. A dog full of infection and covered in sores. This is a first hand account from the foster home of Muskwa, our badly frostbitten guy. “Thought I’d fill you guys in on how Muskwa is doing. I’ve got to admit, the smell of infection is taking over the house but that doesn’t bother me in the least. Every time he shakes his head he sprays a little blood and pus on the walls, again, this doesn’t bother me. He is in a lot of pain just walking as his feet are swollen and bleeding. He tries to stick to the sidewalk and deck when he goes outside as, I assume, the wet grass and icy areas are uncomfortable to walk on. Dealing with a deaf dog definitely has it’s drawbacks and advantages. Advantage: he can’t hear the other dogs get excited so he doesn’t get stressed. He can’t hear me coming and going so no anxiety. Disadvantage: Getting his attention. Not an issue yet as he only wants to go outside to do his business and then comes right back in. Has not made a mess in the house yet.
I’ve created a pen for him that allows him access to the living room when I’m home to supervise. My hope is that he will get more socialized with the resident dogs as he heals.

He has been very good for me when I do his eye and ear drops. Is not eating very much but again, this may be because of the antibiotics and pain. If he doesn’t eat better tonight, I’m going to make a batch of homemade dog food which consists of rice, hamburger, bread and eggs.” This is the nitty gritty of rescue and fostering. It’s not for everyone but is SO rewarding.

March 3 update: Time for an update on how Muskwa is doing. He came to us with severe frostbite and bacterial infection in both ears. As you may notice from the pictures, dear sweet Muskwa is having a difficult battle. It became obvious that he was losing hair from more than just frostbite and his general condition wasn’t showing great signs of improvement so off to the wonderful vet team at Westlock Veterinary Center to help Muskwa on his road to recovery. Thankfully he had started eating well a few days before his appointment and continues to eat everything put in front of him. At first, they suspected demodex (mange) but the tests came back negative, so it’s been determined that Muskwa’s immune system is so compromised that he has developed a skin infection. He is on new medication to treat that as well as a change of meds for his ears (which show no more bacterial infection but now are infected with yeast). He has already shown signs of improvement in the few days since his visit and is seeking out attention for the first time. He continues to have hearing loss but it is still too early to say if this is permanent. Muskwa still has a long road to recovery, but whatever it takes – SCARS will provide it.

Update: Muskwa was adopted.