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Fur Fun Rescue: Senior Pet Adoption Assistance Grant Report

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Your $1,000 grant was used to boost the chances of Nessie, a senior English mastiff, getting adopted. It worked!! Nessie is now home.

Just two days after the award announcement, Nessie went home with her new adopter!

With Nessie’s transfer to the adopter’s home and care, this then freed up Fur Fun’s monthly commitment of $150 to Nessie’s medical care. We specialize in taking in dogs with medical needs that other shelters or owners are not caring for. So we immediately were able to divert the monies we had committed to Nessie to use instead to help other dogs.

Within that first week, we had already committed to taking in a number of new dogs with medical needs. As just one example, we agreed to take in a young dog from Memphis, TN, who not only is heartworm-positive but also was taken in on Sep. 29 with a severely dislocated hip and pelvis and who had received no treatment for that condition! So yes, the $150 “saved” from not being needed for Nessie’s Addison’s disease care will be immediately used for other dogs who desperately need our medical care and treatment.

How many pets did this grant help?


Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

The same day that our grant was submitted, on Wednesday, Oct. 7, Fur Fun Rescue received an inquiry about and an adoption application for Nessie!

The applicant looked exceptional. They had just lost a senior dog who also had significant medical expenses toward the end of its life. The applicant is a pharmacy technician whose medical knowledge would be a big plus for Nessie. Their backyard is completely enclosed, with a tall fence and lockable gates.

Our director told the applicant about our grant submission, but said that it might take 30-60 days before we heard review results. A meet-and-greet was set up for Saturday, Oct. 10. Then on Thursday, Oct. 8, we received the amazing news that our grant had been awarded! We passed that info on to our potential applicant immediately, so that it could be known to her prior to any adoption decision.

Nessie’s adopter and her son came to the meet-and-greet at the foster mom’s home and stayed for 2½ hours. Although it looked like her new mom was in love with Nessie before she ever met her, we went through everything Nessie, which is a lot. Nessie’s folder is a book. Her daily schedule was written out. We did everything we could to make her adoption successful.

The adopters took Nessie home with them. She went home with a variety of cones, because Nessie wears one every day to keep her from licking her foot. Nessie’s adopter is now a member of CARE, the Canine Addison’s Resource and Education Facebook page.

At her new home, Nessie will be in a new situation where there are dogs on every side of her fence and where there are more people in her home. Just to be sure all is well, we decided to hold on to her paperwork for a few days before we finalized her adoption.

On Saturday evening, when Nessie’s foster mom called the adopter to check on her, Nessie had had her dinner and meds and was snoring at her mom’s feet. Then on Sunday, we received the news that Nessie had been taken on a trip to Starbucks for a puppuccino! For those who have never ordered one, these are small cups of whipped cream made by Starbucks for a dog, with no coffee, tea, or caffeine — just straight-up whipped cream. We think Nessie is going to love her new home!

On Oct. 14, we finalized Nessie’s adoption, and will post news of it on our organization website. It will appear under “newsfeed” at

The following is the text of that posting:

Nessie, our 6½ year old English mastiff got a forever home on Saturday! Nessie is a special dog and needed a special family. She found them on Saturday.

In April, Nessie’s owner called us from the emergency vet and asked us to help Nessie. She had raised Nessie from a puppy. Nessie was in crisis and near death. Her owner loved her but had exhausted her financial resources at vets who did not diagnose her Addison’s correctly. The emergency vet tried to talk us out of saving her, saying she was already a senior; is a giant, 120-lb. dog; was going to be expensive; and would probably never find a home. We told them to save her!

Once Nessie received the correct treatment, her heart started to beat normally again, her blood pressure stabilized and her body temperature came up. Nessie spent four days hospitalized and had lost a lot of weight. When Nessie got to her foster home, she could barely pick her head up and was very weak. Her devoted foster parents were very patient with her and cleaned up after her constantly the first few weeks. It’s not fun to care for a giant house pony who is incontinent and has diarrhea. With the correct treatment, Nessie began to thrive. Nessie’s incontinence caused by the Addison’s meds was solved with Prion. She was soon galloping through the house and showing us her giant personality.

Nessie’s Addison’s is well-regulated with a monthly injection of Zycortal and a small amount of prednisone every day. Her Addison’s meds, combined with the Prion, means Nessie’s monthly medical bills run about $150. This doesn’t include normal giant-dog costs such as food, heartworm prevention, flea and tick prevention, and vaccines. The Petfinder Foundation generously awarded Nessie a Senior Pet Adoption Assistance Grant, which will provide $1,000 to Nessie’s family to help with her medical care.

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