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PugHearts of Houston Blog

PugHearts and Facebook

Friday, 1 July 2011 13:52 by richardc

We are changing the way we bring you updates. From this point on Facebook will be the location to find information on Events and day to day happenings at PugHearts. We ask that you take the time to join us on Facebook and ensure you are kept up to date.

The PugHearts website will continue to be the place to check on available dogs, successful adoptions and the very sad Rainbow bridge. We will also post more details information on events within the Blog, and donations and event ticket sales will also be handled here.

The move to Facebook Groups opens up PugHearts as community to one and all, a hub that will enable instant updates via the web, email and your phone. Its a move to the 21st century. Please join us.

Remember, if you do not want to join Facebook, then you will still see major updates within this Blog.

Cruelty is 24/7/365 - Please HELP!

Regards

Richard C
Webmaster – PugHearts of Houston Pug Rescue

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Rescue Me Parade

Monday, 4 April 2011 21:03 by richardc

Last Saturday, PugHearts participated in the Rescue Me Parade at the Doggy Party on the Plaza at City Centre.

Our volunteers worked tirelessly to make an amazing float and we are very proud to announce that we won 2nd place! The prize? $2,600 in products such as $1,000 in pet food from Natural Pet Products and various gift certificates for veterinary specialists, boarding, and obedience training. 

Our float was made to raise puppy mill awareness and we had fun using our fosters as policemen and prisoners, with our puppy mill survivors following close behind. Here are some pictures!

Categories:   Events
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It is our birthday, again!

Monday, 14 February 2011 19:40 by cindyr

It is amazing to me that we are having another birthday.

Today PugHearts is 4 years old.

I have been thinking about this birthday a lot lately. Looking back at where we have come and what we have been able to accomplish. There are so many stories and so many pugs that have benefitted from our being here. PugHearts has rescued more than 700 pugs in the 4 years that we have been working so hard for the pugs in our community.

Let me remind everyone how we got here. I fostered for another group and was the foster to a special old man named Charlie Brown. I named him Charlie because I wanted him to know it was going to be a good life from that time forward. He was the worst first night I ever had with a new foster. Charlie screamed for 9 hours straight. It did not matter what I did. I held him. I crated him. I put him with my pugs. I put him in the bed with me. Nothing worked. He was scared, sick and the only thing he could do was scream. I cried.

Charlie was with me for almost 9 months. Then the hardest day came. Charlie had a family that wanted to adopt him. I was crushed.

I met the couple that wanted to love him. They were (and are) great. They had a pug named Charlie already. Charlie Brown became Alfie.

I called 3 months after he was adopted to see how he was doing. Richard and Robbi were great and offered to let me see him anytime. I jumped at the chance and met Richard in the park that day. Alfie's paws never touched the ground that afternoon. I was thrilled and over the moon to hold him and see him looking so great.

This photo was taken in January 2007. Richard and Robbi became board members. Richard is our webmaster.

PugHearts went "live" on the web Valentine's Day 2007. We took in 3 pugs that day.

I thank each one of you that helped us, supported us and allowed us to have the success that we have achieved today.

Happy Birthday to PugHearts and Thank You for travelling with us on this journey.  Just imagine where we will be in another 4 years. We are not going anywhere. The pugs need us. We need you.

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Eloise

Tuesday, 28 December 2010 21:47 by cindyr

I wanted to take a minute to write about my dear little foster pug, Eloise. She has become so much a part of our family that I sometimes forget she is a foster.

Eloise came to PugHearts mid-May after being found in another pug owner's back yard. My husband and I were between fosters at the time, but were the ones to pick her up and name her. It became apparent very quickly that this little girl had been part of a home and was a pampered pet at some point in her life. She has not had one single accident in the 7 months we have had her and she is very aware of other house etiquette as well as how to demand to be spoiled. Sadly, after her first visit to the vet, she was diagnosed with kidney failure. Her prognosis is uncertain. It could have been only a month or two, or she could live several more years. So far, she seems happy. I don't think she is always comfortable and perhaps sometimes in pain, but she still enjoys all the little things in life; Food, treats, warm/comfy places to sleep, and toys. She goes absolutely nuts for her mini tennis balls.

It is such a great feeling to provide this little girl a warm and loving home, even if she possibly won't be with us much longer. I mean, how can you resist this face? 

Cindy

Categories:   Foster Stories
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Rainbow Bridge page

Monday, 6 December 2010 19:33 by cindyr

As many of you have noticed, we added a new page to the website. The Rainbow Bridge page allows us to be reminded of those that we have lost. This page has had a fair amount of discussion around it. We know that loss is a part of rescue and we cannot win all of the battles we take on. We also know that it is so hard to look at these faces and remember the love we feel for each of them. I was one of the ones that was not sure that we should put it out there. I do not like to lose. It is hard and I take many of these personally. We cry for each one that crosses the bridge. We try to figure out what happened and what we could (and can, in the future) do differently. Each pug in our care teaches us something. We try to hang on to those lessons. Sometimes, all we can see is the loss.

The last few weeks have added several new names to the Rainbow Bridge page.

Lilly_2 was an older lady in our care. She developed an intra-nasal tumor. This tumor eventually caused her to really struggle to breathe. We held her as she crossed the bridge to health and vitality.

Avery was my "perfectly adoptable beautiful 6 year old girl". She was happy, active and loved life. One day her neck swelled up...this was the beginning of the end. Avery was diagnosed with lymphoma and the condition grew worse quickly. The swelling became increasingly worse in her neck and began effecting her breathing. We released Avery 10 days after Lilly crossed the bridge. This is what makes rescue hard.

Avery and Lilly were both fosters in my home.

Now, we add BeBe's babies to the list of those lost. Last Wednesday night, our BeBe went into labor. We were thrilled when she delivered 7 babies early in the morning hours of Thursday. We all cried when we lost the first puppy immediately. The others were so small, cute and squirming (as puppies should be). Sadly, they did not thrive and by today, we have lost all the puppies. This is one of the hardest things to explain and even worse to go through. We are all devastated. I am including a photo of the happy moment after delivery. This is what we must remember.

So, why did I change my mind about the Rainbow Bridge page?

We need to remember the sadness, the love, the journey and the loss. It is all a part of rescue. It is not possible to get one aspect without dealing with the other. I would not trade one moment with any one of the fosters listed on ANY page of this website. I have loved each of them, for different reasons and at different times. I had a volunteer say to me: "We need a memorial page. The available pugs are listed. The adopted pugs are listed, but the lost pugs are just gone. I cannot see his face. He is no where." Well, they were a part of us and we need to remember them.

So please, take a look at our Rainbow Bridge page. Remember that we commit to all of these pugs, whether we win or not.

Please consider donating so that we can continue to help all these pugs, not just the ones that we can save, but the hospice, hopeless and helpless as well.

Cindy

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DON’T BUY PUPPIES! – Holiday PSA

Tuesday, 23 November 2010 15:42 by richardc

During the weeks before Christmas, more puppies are bought from pet stores than any other time of year—meanwhile, animal shelters are overcrowded with wonderful pets just waiting for loving homes. And the puppies in these stores almost invariably come from high-production facilities and puppy mills.

mill Click on the image to watch the video on YouTube

Puppy mills look forward to this all year long, but this year, lets educate consumers about puppy mills so they choose shelter pets instead of buying puppies in pet stores.

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A Time for Thanksgiving

Tuesday, 23 November 2010 09:22 by ChrissieP

Hello Pug World!

As Thanksgiving is fast approaching (loosen that belt buckle!), it is a great time to sit back, take time to reflect on the past year, especially for the people you are most thankful to have in your life. Always included in my list each year are my friends at PugHearts. My life was forever changed after adopting Lou & Andy in August 2007 (and subsequently Flip in April 2009) and as my relationship with PugHearts has developed from adopter to volunteer, my appreciation for this organization continues to grow. A day doesn't go by that I don't think of all the lives that have been saved and changed for the better due to the generosity and selflessness of all the PugHearts volunteers. Sure, I help with the fundraising and blogging (although I have admittedly slacked a little on that), but that doesn't compare to the people who are out there every day rescuing, transporting, and nursing these poor babies back to health. In 3 1/2 very short years, we are quickly approaching 700 dogs whose lives have forever been changed for the better. While it sickens me to think that there is such a need for just ONE breed in ONE city alone, I am still so thankful that those 650+ have been provided a new and better life.

From the bottom of my heart, a huge THANK YOU to all the PugHearts volunteers who work so hard to achieve the PugHearts goal: To never turn down any pug, at any age, in any condition.

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Looking Back

Monday, 1 November 2010 12:18 by richardc

Back in early 2007, we were just getting PugHearts started. A group of us got together with Cindy and started planning our first big event - PugNic. We had flyers printed to hand out and post anywhere we could to get the word out about our new rescue.

I remember stopping in a local pet boutique to ask about posting our flyer. The gentleman behind the counter said we were more than welcome to post it, but he couldn’t believe we actually needed a rescue for Pugs. After all, he said ‘that’s an expensive breed - why would they end up in rescue?’ As he asked me that question I was holding my beautiful rescue pug Alfie. I explained to him how even pedigreed dogs can end up in rescue. And the very fact that they are a desirable breed makes them a tempting target for unscrupulous breeders. But also, they are a special breed with special needs. Not everyone understands those needs when they fall in love with these squishy-faced babies.

It’s now been 3 years since PugHearts of Houston was born. And our numbers show that the need for a pug rescue in Houston was far greater than we had ever imagined. We have taken in well over 500 dogs in that time. I’m astounded by that.

I’m sad, because that’s a lot of dogs that have been in a bad situation. But I’m also happy because we have been able to make a difference to those 500+ dogs. Most of those dogs have gone on to live pampered, happy lives with their new families. Some are sadly no longer with us, but we know their last days were made more comfortable and filled with love thanks to our hard work.

The driving force behind PugHearts is the legion of volunteers that run it. PugHearts is not a shelter. We are not a brick-and-mortar building. We are a network of people who do incredible things for no pay or reward. Some volunteers help by picking up dogs from shelters or people who have called us. Some help by taking our dogs to and from the vet. Some open their homes to these dogs as foster parents until they find their forever home. A few even open their homes to dogs they know will never be adopted. Some help with fundraising. And some help by processing the adoption applications filled out by prospective ‘parents.’ And some people help by paying our vet bills through their generous donations. All of these people ARE PugHearts. Without them we would not exist.

On the eve of our 3rd anniversary, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all you have done for these sweet puggies. Thank you for helping to make PugHearts such a success in our mission to save every Pug we can - one pug at a time.

Robbi

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State of the Rescue - October 2010

Sunday, 31 October 2010 12:50 by richardc

Hello again to all of the PugHearts extended family. We are excited to provide another update on where we are as a group.

Where are we right now?

  • 95 foster pugs in our care with 7 waiting to come in (that we know of right now)
  • 2 pugs boarding at the vet, waiting for a foster family.
  • About 68 foster families actively caring for a pug (or pugs) in their homes.
  • A vet bill of just under $10,000 (as of today 10/17)
  • Blanco’s was a BLAST! More details on that in a moment.
  • Shelters and pounds calling almost every day to ask us to take in a pug. This NEVER changes.

    Blanco’s was a great success. The events committee did a fantastic job and the tent looked great. The band (The Norman Number) rocked the house, while Scott (our DJ, http://yourdjhouston.com/ ) kept us all excited and things moving to the beat. The pugs had a great time playing in the pen with all their friends. For the first time ever, we named a volunteer of the year. Mary Ludwig was selected.  (see Blanco's Update below)

    Sometimes, I think Mary spends more time at the vet than I do and that is a challenge. Mary has had so many fosters through her home that we have all lost count. We appreciate all of our volunteers. It really does take an army for this to all be successful. So, the part everyone is waiting to hear…. YOU helped us to raise just over $22,000 at Blanco’s. THANK YOU! That makes a HUGE dent in the vet bills and allows us to keep accepting the needy ones (and the needy ones keep coming).

    The numbers are better. We are pleased to have had several adoptions recently. However, the holidays are coming fast and we always get a large influx during the holiday season. Most of those will be owner surrenders or owners taking the pugs to the shelters before leaving for vacations and holiday plans; sad, but true. We will always take in pugs that are sick, hurt, tired and ready to give up. We give all that we can to adopt out pugs that are (fairly) healthy, happy and ready to be loved and adored by a family. This is the real joy in rescue. It is not always easy to remember, but well worth the moments we get to look at the results.

    As always,

    You make this possible.
  • By fostering, you give a pug time and love to grow, heal and learn.
  • By transporting, you allow us to get them to safety and medical care.
  • By donating, you allow us the funds we must have to continue medical care and treatment.
  • By adopting, you provide a forever home to one that is ready and make room for the next one that needs us.

    Please know that there are highs and lows in rescue. There is life and death; happiness and sadness. This is normal and it is OK. I tell people that when I stop smiling for the wins and crying for the losses…then it is time to quit. This is personal. This is wonderful and this is PugHearts.

    You keep us going and believing in people.

    Without your help, donation and support we could not do what we do.

    Thank you.

    Cindy

BLANCO'S 2010 ANOTHER YEAR ANOTHER SUCCESS!

Sunday, 31 October 2010 12:10 by richardc

We would like to thank everyone who came out to show their support for PugHearts at the Pugs at Blanco’s event Saturday night. We had a fantastic time and helped to raise funds and awareness about our rescue.

It was great to see so many people bringing their furry companions (both pug and non-pug!) and we hope everyone had as much fun as we did. Hopefully next year will be even bigger and better (and maybe a bit cooler)!

A big congratulations to the winner of our grand prize raffle for the 50" TV - Diane Rifai! We’d also like to thank everyone who dug deep and bid so generously on our live auction and silent auction items. There was truly something for everyone this year.

Blanco's 2010 - D'Angeles DonationOne of the many Silent Auction baskets

Blanco's 2010 - D'Angeles DonationBrent Piercy holding aloft a major auction item

We would also like to thank all of our volunteers. They worked tirelessly and endlessly to ensure that this event was a success. Their efforts are what help make PugHearts what it is today. Without them we would not exist and the pugs of Houston would not have a safe haven. We would like to give a special acknowledgement to PugHearts’ 1st ever Volunteer of the Year - Mary Ludwig!

Blanco's 2010 - D'Angeles DonationCindy (on stage) and Mary Ludwig and the very brave Phoebe

Mary is a very special lady with a heart as big as Texas. She takes on some of our most challenging cases, our most needy rescues. Remember Cody - our first rescue suffering from a liver shunt? Mary stepped up to the plate and opened her heart and home to this little guy that had no chance for survival before coming into PugHearts. Cody is now living a healthy, happy life with his new family in OK following surgery to correct his condition. Mary helped make that happen. Then there’s Whitney - one of our first Hospice pugs due to her cancer. She is still with Mary, having outlived everybody’s predictions. Though she remains a Hospice pug and we know will never be healthy again, her life has been full of love and security thanks to Mary. Remember KC? Another dog we took in and placed on Hospice care with Mary due to his lung and breathing issues. Except Mary worked her magic with him and nursed him back to health. He is now with his new forever family enjoying his second chance at life.

Blanco's 2010 - D'Angeles DonationKC, brought back to health by Mary Ludwig, the PugHearts Hospice miracle worker!

Mary has been with PugHearts since day 1 and has fostered dozens and dozens of dogs. She is an irreplaceable part of PugHearts and we are honored to have her as one of our volunteers. We thank you Mary, and we know if they could talk all the little puggies you have helped over the years would say thank you too!
We would also like to take this opportunity to say a huge, public "Thank You" to the staff of Sugar Land Pet Hospital. We often sing the praises of Dr. Doug Hendrix (our very own Dr. Pugger) but we want all of the staff at SPH to know how grateful we are for all the support and care they give us and our rescues. In addition to Dr. Hendrix, Dr. David Brust has been with us from the beginning. He has been instrumental in helping us give our rescues the best medical care possible. And the practice has now grown to include a new veterinarian, Dr. Valeri Devaney. Often the doctors get all the glory, but we know that we owe a huge debt of gratitude to the entire staff at SPH. From the receptionists who take our frantic calls when we need to bring a dog in when they are ready to close, to the vet techs who do everything from walking our boarding dogs to administering treatments to handling the avalanche of paperwork and prescriptions for our crew, we cannot say a big enough thank you!

Blanco's 2010 - D'Angeles DonationThe Sugarland Pet Hospital Team
www.SugarLandPetHospital.com

And last, but certainly not least, we would like to thank you. Your generous donations, your participation, your willingness to open your heart and home to adopt a rescue pug make you the critical link in our chain of rescue. Thank you.