Animal Success Stories
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Remember when I said that rescue is just as much about people as it is about dogs? This story is a tear jerker! In January 2023, SPIN was asked if we could help a woman in Penticton, British Columbia, rehome her standard poodle, Moysis. The woman was very very ill. She had reached out to her groomer and her groomer reached out to us. Well, absolutely we will.

I was so happy, because as the foster coordinator I knew of a very keen foster in Vancouver who had been bugging me to foster. Finally! But wait. They were going on holidays. So I phoned the next one. Holidays. Next one. Holidays. All five potential foster families in BC were going on holidays. What the heck?

New plan. I then started to search for a foster in Calgary, but how would I get him there? Steve  suggested Canadian Wings of Rescue. Now this great organization matches pilots with rescue dogs for air transport. I contacted them and they actually did have a pilot who could fly Moysis to Calgary. Holy smokes. I asked one of our fosters in Calgary and she agreed to foster Moysis.

And now for the details. These planes are typically small. Would they be able to fit a standard poodle in a crate? The answer was no. They would have to lift Moysis into the plan and secure him in. Ahem. This is a standard poodle. I don’t know how many standard poodles you know, but most that I know are not going to allow complete strangers to lift them into a plane and buckle them in. But it’s possible. I had to find out and for that I needed to find someone to go and meet Moysis, assess his character, drive him to the airport and buckle him into a plane.

I put a call out on our facebook page. A new friend of Barbara's  happened to see the post and forwarded it to her. Could she help? Absolutely she said and Barbara sent a message to me. Barbara was thrilled to be able to help. She had just come through an illness herself and while she couldn’t foster she would do anything to help a poodle in need. A meet up was arranged and Barbara went to meet Moysis and his person.

After the initial meeting came to an end, Barbara got in her car, drove two blocks and burst out crying. I, curious person that I am, called her right at that time to ask how it went. All I heard were sobs. “Oh Paula. She is just so nice and she’s so very sick. She loves that dog. She just loves him. But she can’t…. Oh Paula. It’s just so sad!” We both started crying.

The next day we got together to strategize the flight. Moysis had barked at Barbara for 45 minutes and when he finally stopped barking he laid down but did not come for pats. Flying to Calgary was likely not going to happen for Moysis. But that’s okay! Barbara had spoken with her husband, David, in the meantime and while they weren’t going to go to Calgary in the winter, they were going to go at some point. They might as well drive Moysis to his foster and visit friends and relatives as well. Are you sure? Because I’ve been through the Crowsnest Pass in the winter and it’s not for the faint hearted. Yes, yes. They replied. We’ve done it many times.

That settled, I called Canadian Wings of Rescue and thanked them for their offer. I then asked Barbara to visit Moysis and his person so that he would get used to them and not panic when they picked him up. It soon became apparent, however, that Moysis’ person was ready to let him go. She couldn’t carry on and Barbara agreed to bring Moysis to her home temporarily.

The day before their scheduled departure, a huge snow storm blew in. Driving would be beyond treacherous and it really wouldn’t be clear to drive for days. And anyway, “you know what, Paula? We wouldn’t mind to foster Moysis. I mean, both Dave and I quite like him and he gets along famously with his fur foster brother, Marshal. And quite frankly, this way we can keep visiting with Moysis’ person and she can see him every now and then. Just until he’s adopted mind you.” That’s great, Barbara. Thanks!

And so Moysis moved into their lives and it was as if it was meant to be. They kept visiting with Moysis’ person and became very good friends. Moysis loved going to visit, but also hopped happily back in the car. He had two homes! Yes. You probably have guessed the ending by now. Moysis indeed has found his home. He is home. Silly. Goofy. Dear Moysis. Loved by so many. Barbara who herself has emerged from a serious illness has now found herself with an extended family. Don’t you love rescue?!


On Dec. 17, 2022, SPIN got word that a 17 week old standard poodle puppy named Quincey was at Emergency and diagnosed with Parvo Virus. His people took him there expecting to have to euthanize him, but the vet thought that he could be saved. Can SPIN help? Absolutely. Quincey was the jaw dropping 100th dog admitted into SPIN that year.

Over the next two days Quincey fought this horrible disease, but by the third day he rallied. He hadn’t eaten yet, but he hadn't thrown up overnight either. Hope. Hope. Hope.

On Dec. 20, Dr. Michelle wrote this, Quincey is so sweet and affectionate and just absolutely melts your heart. He whimpers when you leave him and quietly wags his tail when he sees you again - he just wants snuggles and affection. But despite this bright eyed picture, he’s still so sick. Our boy is with me now for some extra TLC and to continue the incredible lifesaving care that he received at the emergency clinic. Quincey - along with IV fluid therapy, constant rate infusions, blood glucose and protein checks, too many medications to list, and supplements galore - needs love. This has been an absolute whirlwind of a terrible week and he doesn’t deserve this. So along with his countless meds, Quincey is getting extra doses of hugs and snuggles, and a CRI of love and attention. We will love you enough to get you better. We’ve got you, Quincey. We’ve got you.

On Dec. 21 Dr. Michelle wrote, Guess who has gone 24 hours without vomiting?! THIS BOY!!!! 24 hours! A whole day and night! A whole sun has risen and fallen, and our boy has kept EVERY LAST BITE DOWN! YEAHHHHHH!!!!!!

On Dec. 22, Yes! We are cheering over poop in the house!!! Why? Because SPIN’s Quincey has had his first (semi) formed stool since Parvovirus ravaged through his tiny body! So excuse the poop picture but I know you will all be as ecstatic as I am! Or perhaps moreso, as you don’t need to clean it up (or smell it)….

On Dec. 24 Michelle discharged Quincey from her care. Quincey was placed at foster Ella's house. Ella lives across from her Mom, Lynne, who could help with his care and close to the Watzin clinic for followup visits. Quincey immediately felt right at home reprtedly eating, drinking, pooping, peeing, checking out the toys and taking lots of naps. He was so little and skinny though. Job #1 was to fatten the little guy up! Quincey stayed in quarantine at Ella’s house for another month before he got to meet the dogs at Lynne's house and then it took him 6 more weeks to recover his weight.

He is now a happy pup of 6 months and full of mischief. Quincey was the sixth foster for Ella and Lynne. Two of their pups prior to Quincey had passed away due to congenital disease. They were so loved and Ella and Lynne were at the time heartbroken. Still are if truth be known. Ella and Lynne were brave enough to step up for Quincey but this one, they were not going to let go. How could SPIN say no when Ella applied to adopt Quincey? We couldn’t. The love between these two is too much.

Quincey is such a lucky dog. From the Emergency vet who refused to let him be put down, to Dr. Michelle, to the SPIN community who cheered, donated and rallied, to Lynne who supported her daughter Ella in her journey to make this pup’s life the very best it can be. SPIN loves every one of you!


In October, 2022, a young blind dog came into SPIN. An owner surrender, Bobbi had been blind since birth. Bobbi had been adopted and loved, but then changed life circumstances forced Bobbi’s person to ask the breeder for help. As the breeder’s home wasn’t a suitable environment for a young blind dog, the breeder asked if SPIN could help. We said, of course.

So in came Bobbi. Serial foster, Aili put up her hand. They would love to foster Bobbi. Bobbi was a little shy at first as she learned to navigate the new smells and environment, but it really was amazing how quickly she learned. Soon she was playing and happily running down the trails after her foster sister without a care. Dogs are such amazing creatures.

Bobbi did need to learn the grooming process. She was head and foot shy with the clippers, pulling away and actually fearful. Aili patiently worked with her: “Today, I was grooming my own poodle and brought her near the clippers and indeed she is very afraid. She will need to be home groomed by whomever, or desensitized on a regular basis including positive reinforcement. I’ve started the process, by running clipper and letting it touch her body (back of clipper). She is not to bad with that, but getting hear the head is a no go. We ended fairly positively, with clipper (quiet clipper) near her ear. I might look into a band for ears, to see if it provides comfort. She did let me touch clipper to back of leg, just above foot pad. I stopped at that point so as not to push her too much."

The next stroke of luck for Bobbi was that living next door to her foster home lived a vet tech who worked in the opthamology department with Dr. Feigel at the Ottawa Animal Emergency and Veterinary Clinic! Not only that but Dr. Feigel offered free exams for rescue dogs, if referred by the rescue organization. What????!!!!!  I swear, SPIN has a golden horseshoe hanging over us.

Dr. Feigel’s diagnosis: "Today’s ophthalmic examination is consistent with the disease early onset Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA). In PRA, a slow death of retinal tissue occurs. It is an incurable, progressive, hereditary eye disease.  However, it is not painful and in general dogs with vision deficits have an excellent quality of life, despite their handicap. All dogs with PRA eventually develop complete blindness. An ocular supplement, Ocu-Glo has been reported to help reduce progression of the disease in some cases.  In advanced PRA, the pupils are usually dilated which may cause a noticeable "glow" or increased "eye shine" from the eyes.  The time frame until the dog is blind varies considerably from dog to dog.  Dogs with PRA can develop cataracts late in the disease process.  Generally these patients are not candidates for cataract surgery, as the initiating source of vision loss is retinal disease, not the cataract itself.  Sometimes surgery can bring back limited/possibly functional vision, but the retinal disease is progressive, and patients ultimately become permanently blind.  I recommend monitoring for cataract development lifelong, as secondary complications can develop with their presence (uveitis, glaucoma, retinal detachments). Thank you for bringing sweet Bobbi to see us today. She was such a good girl and we adored her!"

And through all of this, her fuzzy and non-fuzzy foster beings loved Bobbi and played with her and helped her live her best life. Rex Specs were produced and she took to them slowly but surely. Now her eyes were protected.

But it’s these special needs dogs that get to you. Aili and her family simply couldn’t part with her. And we agreed. Bobbi was home. We are so happy for Bobbi!


In December, 2022, Enyi was returned into SPIN by her original adopters. They were so sad, but the mix between their SPIN alum Ellie and Enyi was not working out. The two girls were clearly not happy living in the same house. They were two very different personalities. They asked us for help, and we said, of course.

So in came Enyi. Happy. Bright. Active. We put up a whole bunch of red flags for her foster family. Look for this. Look for that. And Enyi proceeded to prove us wrong on all counts. She looked around. Heaved a big sigh. And said "Yup, I like it!" And she was ever so good.

No kids! She loved the grandkids and gave them kisses. No dogs! She got along with visiting dogs. Watch out for strangers coming in the house! Well who doesn't like a bouncy poodle. Enyi. Honestly.

And so, Enyi wormed her way into Tammy's heart. Tammy asked if she could adopt and rather than move Enyi, now named Annie again, and also because they are just so great with this silly dog, we said yes. Congratulations Annie. Phew!


How to tell Cooper's story.... It's a great story too. Okay here we go. Back in January, 2022, SPIN was asked if we could help. A woman needed to surrender her standard poodle because he was not a great service. Careful to let us know that not all dogs are meant to be service dogs, and she absolutely love him, it's just that she needed a service dog and Cooper wasn't it. She wanted the absolute best for him.

So in comes Cooper and he is in new situations and not at all comfortable with what is going on. That's okay. We got him a nice foster home where he was okay, but a little restless. Unfortunately this foster home went on holidays and Cooper was transferred to a temporary home with kids. Unfortunately the kids were a bit too much. I mean he loved them, but, he really didn't know how to play nicely. Whatever it was, whatever the dynamic was, we knew we had to move him and quickly.

It was about that time that Marisa was inquiring softly, looking around, sort of thinking to bring in an older standard poodle. They had adopted a gorgeous standard poodle named Arthur in 2017. It was love at first sight. But Arthur had crossed the rainbow bridge and the house felt empty.

Hi Marisa. So.... We have this silly young standard poodle that needs out of his temporary foster home right away. Would you like to foster Cooper? He is beautiful, fun, well trained. I can't imagine you will have him for very long.

I probably shouldn't have said that. I knew it when I put the phone down. I jinxed it. Well. For some insane reason and quite frankly I have no idea why, nobody adopted Cooper. We had this perfectly good, well trained, silly, young standard poodle up for adoption for over a year!

And Marisa held out too! Her goal was to find Cooper a great furever home and that was that. Her husband meanwhile loved Cooper. Cooper loved them. Marisa loved both of them. They were both looking at her with big wide eyes! It's been over a year! Nobody wants me!  Can't you change your mind? I mean I know the goal and I know you accomplish what you set out to do. But I love you guys.  We love you too Coopie!!!

And so I have to confess something now. And please don't tell Marisa. But we sort of thought that they would adopt Cooper. It was quite honestly the best home for him. What we didn't count on was how stubborn Marisa could be. lol. We love you Marisa!!! But gosh. The universe also helped. Nobody wanted to adopt him. Hilarious. The things this rescue gets itself into.

Anyway, we are pleased as punch for you Cooper. You are finally, officially, home.

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