Zeke is no longer available for adoption. He is staying with the “Pack” at Freckled Paws. We simply have to much of our hearts invested in his recovery to let him go at this time. Thank you to all who applied to adopt him as well as those who kept Zeke in their prayers, thoughts and well wishes. Zeke is completed healed at this time and looking forward to all the action at the Freckled Paws Daycare/Boarding Facility.
It has been about a week and a half since Zaphod, now Zeke, was surrendered to our care. Only 12 days ago, we weren’t sure whether Zeke would survive let alone make the remarkable recovery he has made to this point. What a difference 12 short days has made in the life of Zeke as well as our own.
Zeke had a steel cable wrapped around his neck which had cut 1 1/2″-2″ deep. The wounds were infected and the infection had spread to surrounding skin causing numerous sores to develop. The cable had to be surgically removed from his neck. From the first post, on this story, it was pure coincidence my wife, Jennifer, happened to walk over to Willow Mountain Veterinary Clinic when the surgery was happening. Jennifer talked with the owners and made it clear she would take Zeke, assume responsibility for his care and veterinary bills if it was too much for the current owners to handle.
Once the surgery was completed, the doctor spoke with the owners and made clear what they would need to do help Zeke survive and heal. The care Zeke required proved to daunting a task for his owners and they made the tough decision to surrender him to Jennifer.
Wounds and Treatment
The doctor didn’t want to close the deep lacerations on his neck. To heal properly, they needed to remain open so they could heal from the inside out to the skin surface. Zeke had two major lacerations, where the cable had cut up to 2″ deep into his neck. The largest wound was about 6″ long. In addition, some infection had started and cause several sores to develop around the cuts. The swelling was severe as well. The vet tech, Mary, who has over 20 years experience stated this was one of the worst cases she had ever seen. Mary was very concerned about Zeke surviving, let alone recovering.
Once surrendered to Jennifer, we spoke with Mary and the doctor. We decided Zeke needed immediate antibiotics on board, so we gave him an injection and set him up on an oral antibiotics regimen as well. The infection getting out of control or Zeke becoming septic was the major danger to his survival in everyone’s opinion.
This was all happening on Friday of a Memorial Day Weekend, so Jennifer and I were on our own with Zeke’s treatment until the following Tuesday. Of course, if Zeke were to start going downhill, we were only a phone call away from getting Mary and/or the doctor involved.
To treat the wounds we irrigated them once or twice per day with 0.9% Sodium Chloride (Normal Saline). We flushed the lacerations with the normal saline and then removed any scabbing using sterile gauze, to open the wounds back up to the air. Remember, the doctor wanted the wounds to heal from the deepest area outward to the skin’s surface. Any scabbing would hinder this healing process. Once the wounds were cleaned, we dried the area very well and then packed the wounds with a little antibiotic ointment and Freckled Paws Wound Butter. We then spread the Freckled Paws Wound Butter on all the skin exposed from Zeke being shaved. We massaged the wound cream into the skin very well, especially on and around the sores that had developed from Zeke’s infection.
After 5 days, we gave Zeke a bath using Dawn dish detergent to remove the oils from the hair surrounding his shaved area. Mary was concerned about the oily hair around the wound site holding moisture and possibly causing a Staph infection to erupt.
12 Days Later
Zeke is fitting in nicely. He gets along with all of our furkids as well as those that are boarding and come for daycare. We have been working on house breaking Zeke as well since he was an outside dog that had never been in a house. Zeke is doing extremely well with his potty training.
Zeke was very hyperactive when he first arrived. He went a little nuts with all the attention and his new found freedom from the tie out. Zeke has calmed down immensely since those first days. He is learning from the “Pack” and is copying much of their behavior.
We have received numerous applications to adopt Zeke. As we said from the beginning, we would not make any decisions concerning Zeke’s future until he had healed 100% from his wounds. Zeke has had many visitors and one prospective adopter even took him on a hike on the Fred Burr Trail last Saturday.
As you can see from the poor photographs, Zeke is healing very well. He is Golden Retriever through and through, with the happy go lucky attitude toward everything, even after all he has been through. We’ll keep updating Zeke’s progress since there are so many people that have shown interest in his story. Zeke thanks everyone for their prayers and well wishes.