Homeless Dog Finds Sanctuary for Christmas

Today might be Christmas, but it's a business day as usual for the24-hour animal hospitals around the country whose doors always stay open. (Murphy's Law...


Today might be Christmas, but it’s a business day as usual for the24-hour animal hospitals around the country whose doors always stay open. (Murphy’s Law appears to dictate that major holidays are prime time for dog emergencies.) One such hospital is Animal Specialty Center (ASC) in Yonkers, New York.

Founded by two top-notch veterinarians – neurologist Dr. Rick Joseph andneurologist-internist Dr. Jason Berg – ASC has developed quite the reputation for its caring, state-of-the-art services. I experienced Dr. Joseph’s high level of expertise years ago, when he used acupuncture to reverse my brindle pit bull‘s incontinence. Manypeople I knowhave experiencedASC’swizardry atcorrecting spinal injury. Sadly, many New York area dogs wind upwith their hind legs paralyzedafter spinal surgery at other animal hospitals; after orthopedic surgery in Yonkers, theygo homeon their own legs to become walking advertisements for ASC.

Manhattan has its share of excellent 24-hour animal hospitals, but many busy Manhattanites travel by car toASC’s Yonkers location even though it’s about 40 minutes’schlep away. If you ever saw the musical “Hello Dolly!” on stage or screen,youmay remember that the characters fromYonkers spend their time traveling to Manhattan because, well,that’s where the action is. Today, Manhattan animal lovers don’t mind reversing the trip and schlepping to Yonkers when a dog or other pet needs critical care.

That’s how excellent ASC’s reputation is: New Yorkers love convenience and hate to schlep.

Services here do not come cheap. Like any other animal hospital, this is a business. It takes money to operate a state-of-the-art facility like this one. But I think you can tell what’s coming, or I would’ve found a different column topic for this special day.

On December 10th, late at night, a Good Samaritan found a strayRottweiler wandering in a park in the Bronx. The dog headed out toward the street, and the G.S. worried that she might be hit by a car. So he followed her, collared her (actually, she was wearing a harness),and brought her to his apartment.

The dog was limping and showed signs of vaginal bleeding and discharge. Figuring she needed medical attention, the G.S.got busy making phone calls, then brought the Rottieto ASC.

ASC staff named the dog Barbara. And her rescuer was right that she needed a vet: upon examination, ASC doctors found that she had pyometra,a potentially life-threatening infection of the uterus. So without delay, surgeons performed the needed surgery on an emergency basis to saveBarbara’s life. Now she’s spayed, has made an excellent recovery, and is fine. All she needs is what so many millions ofstray and shelterdogs across this country desperately need today: a home.

ASC estimates Barbara’s age to be between 6 and 9 years.Thisgorgeous grand damedoesn’t appear to be the victim of neglect or abuse – apart from the unfortunate fact that she was left astray in a public park. Extremely friendly and sweet,Barbara gets along with all people and other dogs.

Here’s what Dr. Joseph Palamara and Dr. Heather York, the two surgeons who attended tothis sweetsenior lady,have to say about their patient:

“We’re thankful that the Good Samaritan rescued Barbara. She’s such a good dog, so sweet and friendly. She loves everyone, including other dogs! We’re gratified to have been in the position to do the right thing for her at Animal Specialty Center when we performed the emergency surgery that saved her life – even though we were unable to locate her owner. We look forward to placing her in a wonderful new home just as quickly as possible.”

With hope in their hearts, ASC staffers reckon that someone, somewhere must be missing this wonderful dog. They’ve done what they could to locate the owner and arrange a reunion, butthus far, no onehas stepped forward to claimbeautiful Barbara. So now it’s time to widen the net and welcome any and all adopters.

Although Barbara adores everyone at ASC, she’d love a home that isn’t a hospital. If you’re interested in welcoming Barbara into your home, please call 914-457-4000.

Merry Christmas!

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