Leeanne Polvi is an animal lover. She had been looking for a chihuahua for some time. When someone called her last week and told her that they had heard of someone selling chihuahua puppies she phoned the people right away.
Last Thursday she went to an apartment to pick up her puppy but was dismayed by the conditions under which it was living. She said the place was a pig sty, filthy, with a stench so bad that she was gagging, and the owners themselves smelling and scratching because of the abundance of fleas that infested the place. There was only one puppy left and Leeanne fell in love with it. She told me she just wanted to save that puppy and get the heck out of there.
She brought the little puppy home and realized that the chihuahua was full of fleas. Three baths and several flea combings later she said she removed hundreds of them. The next day the puppy began to get sick, vomiting with severe diarrhea. At first she attributed the illness with the severe flea infestation but soon realized it was something worse. Calling the emergency number for veterinarians on call, she was directed to Ableson Veterinary Services on Trunk Rd.
A short time later, the little chihuahua was diagnosed with the Parvo virus; an often deadly disease.
The puppy was admitted at once and treatment began on the little one immediately. At first is was touch and go and Leeanne and her husband were devastated.
Luckily, after a nearly a week of treatment, the little dog began to improve. He is home now. Leeanne says there could still be a problem, but it looks promising. The little dog now named Sisu ( a Finnish word meaning ‘warrior’) is eating , pooping and playing with Leeanne’s other dogs.
Leeanne called the woman she had bought the dog from and told them that her puppy had parvo.
The woman was rude and told her that the puppy was healthy and it must have gotten parvo at her own home. Parvo does not work that way.
There is a week to two week incubation period for parvo, before symptoms even show up and since the dog became sick only two days after Leeanne purchased it, it is obvious that the house contained the parvo virus.
Leeanne is concerned because the lady had told her that the mother dog, having given birth only nine weeks before, was pregnant again and expecting puppies around Christmas. She wants people to know that these puppies will almost certainly get parvo and will be sold to some unsuspecting buyers sometime in the new year. ( This is also a red flag. Good breeders do NOT continuously breed their female over and over. It is simply not healthy for the dog)
There is no deal to be had when you buy a puppy from a backyard breeder. Even though you may pay less for the puppy than you would for a puppy from a legitimate breeder, you will most likely spend 100’s of dollars on unexpected vet bills.
People, like the ones who sold Leeanne her puppy, obviously do not care one bit about these dogs. To them, the breeding and selling of these puppies is a way to make money.
I tried to call the number that Leeanne had called when she bought her puppy, but SURPRISE! that number is “no longer in service”.
What I can tell you is that the people live in an apartment above a delivery service on Second Line West, just past the Mac’s store on the corner of Goulais Ave. and Second Line. The first name of the woman is Lenore.
If you know of anyone who is looking for a Chihuahua after Christmas please tell them not to buy a puppy from these shysters. They will only be buying heartbreak.
In fact if you know anyone looking for any kind of puppy, please tell them to check out dog rescues. There are rescues for almost every breed of dog. And if you don’t care what kind of breed you have, but want only to have a devoted companion and a friend, please adopt from a shelter. There are thousands of healthy, loving dogs out there who are euthanized each year simply because there are not enough homes for them.
Leeanne was lucky that her little Sisu was saved and she credits the “wonderful people” at Ableson Veterinary Service with his survival.
But sometimes even the most thorough doctoring cannot save a puppy with parvo. Dr. Shaw at Abelson’s told me that there is a fair amount of parvo in this city and that you should not take a young puppy out to socialize in parks or on the street until after it has all three parvo shots. Those should be given at eight weeks, 12 weeks and 16 weeks. Until then their immune systems cannot fight off the virus.
So beware.There is no law preventing people from breeding and selling dogs that are sick. It is up to the consumer to do some research about who they are buying a puppy from.
Please, if you want to avoid a broken heart and hundreds of dollars in vet bills choose your puppy wisely.
Little Sisu was one of the lucky ones, yours may not be.
And just a note. Please don’t buy a puppy or kitten as a present on Christmas day. Wait a little until most of the holidays are over and you will have the one on one time to spend with your pet. A gift certificate from a shelter or rescue group is a wonderful idea for someone who would like to choose an animal companion.