MEET DYLAN, THE 40-KILO CUDDLE MONSTER
When we first saw Dylan, in a terrible pound in Limassol, it broke our hearts. Standing in a grotty cage, half-starved and with his head down, everything seemed hopeless for him. It was as if he’d given up on ever escaping the cage.
A volunteer at one of the local pounds in Limassol contacted us about some dogs in desperate need and asked us for help. As soon as Saving Souls’ Vaso Mixail saw Dylan, along with two other dogs, at the pound she realised that we just couldn’t leave them behind. So everything was prepared for all three dogs and they were taken to our private boarding kennels in Limassol.
A NEW START
Vaso is a master at turning dogs’ lives around. Firstly Dylan was taken to the vet for a thorough check-up. They estimated he was 7 years old at the time. Unfortunately, as is commonly the case for neglected dogs in Cyprus, he was diagnosed with leishmania. Vaso wasted no time in starting him on treatment and fortunately it was successful, but would require ongoing medication and monitoring with daily tablets and annual blood tests.
Now it was time to have Dylan neutered and prepared for adoption. No adult dog ever leaves us without being neutered, it is part of our responsibility as a rescue not to add to the growing problem of unwanted dogs across the world.
Dylan flourished under Vaso’s care. He received the best food, care and affection. He learned to be loved and love in return, to trust and find that the world is not all bad.
Next was the task of finding him a good home, which is not easy for a dog who has been treated for leishmania. While it’s a relatively well-known disease in countries around the Mediterranean, it does not occur in the UK. As a consequence, UK vets are less familiar with it and adopters often feel daunted about taking on a dog with the condition.
Dogs treated for leishmania have a harder struggle to find a home, there is no doubt about it. It’s a shame there is a stigma around the disease, because with correct management, dogs can go on to lead full and happy lives.
However, Dylan’s profile on the Saving Souls Facebook group caught the eye of his adopters in the UK. “We were looking for another dog to join our family after losing one of our springer spaniels and we wanted to get a rescue dog rather than a puppy from a breeder,” they explain. “Dylan’s pictures captured our attention, so we reached out to Saving Souls and spoke to the fabulous Vaso.”
After discussing Dylan and his ongoing treatment for leishmania, the family applied to adopt him, and after undergoing a home check, they were approved.
It’s standard procedure that any animal in Cyprus must be signed off as healthy by a certified vet before they can fly out. Happily, Dylan passed his vet check and all his blood tests. He received all the necessary vaccinations, had a microchip implanted and got his pet passport. Now he was ready to fly!
LIVING THE DREAM
In December 2020, Dylan finally flew to the UK and his forever home. “What a whirlwind it’s been since then,” say his family. “On walks, Dylan zooms off across the fields to chase squirrels or rabbits. He also loves stealing slippers and running off into the garden because he knows it will involve some great chase games. When he’s not chasing, he spreads himself over the sofa! Dylan is our 40kg cuddle monster and we couldn’t be without our funny, clever and brave boy.”
Dylan does need ongoing medication with just a cheap pill once a day to keep his Leishmania dormant and an annual blood test to check it is all ok. Dylan is now living the dream and we could not be more thankful to his wonderful adoptive family, who opened their home and hearts to him.
Please enjoy the images of Dylan below that his family have shared with us.
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