Rescued Feb 2015 Adopted March 2015
The last thing on Candice’s mind as she was taking her foster furchild, Tyson, for an early evening walk a few days after Christmas, was finding a corpes lying in the veldt on her route.... Tyson, rescued by PACT after being abandoned by his owners became aware of something and determinedly brought his discovery to Candice’s attention. Candice decided to err on the side of caution and take Tyson back home first for the sake of his safety and call in the help of Neeri, the other lady who runs Phoenix Animal Care and Treatment (PACT), sadly an area rife with animal neglect, abandonment and abuse.
The two ladies returned to the scene of Tyson’s discovery to find this.....
They were quite convinced that the little body lying there had left this earth, but on closer inspection discovered that somehow he was still breathing. They were able to carefully pick him up and rush him to the only emergency after hours vet in the area. The vet on duty gave this little mite one look, poked him with her pen and said one word.... Euthanaze!!!
Neeri and Candice were both upset and argued with the vet to at least give the dog a chance. Monday morning he was transferred to their regular vet in Umhlanga, and Dr Landsberg and staff from the Ridge Vet, being the amazing welfarists that they are, did not hesitate to start taking care of his primary needs. And he found his name...Max....
Max is a little guy of medium build, was grossly malnourished, full of mange and the resultant secondary shin infections and he had two fractures to his jaw. Blood work also revealed a severe anemic state from erlichiosis, a chronic insidious type of tick bite fever.
And so his long arduous journey to recovery began with appropriate meals, medicated baths and antibiotics to bring him back to health. In the meantime they had put out an urgent call for help for the financial implications of Max’s treatment on Facebook. Husky Rescue SA (HRSA) was tagged and they agreed to accept responsibility and take Max on. R3000 was raised initially for Max and the balance was covered by HRSA whilst Husky Rescue KZN became involved in coordinating and overseeing Max’s treatment. Two weeks later Max had gained just over a kg in weight and we transferred him to Kloof Village Vet under the watchful eye of Dr Craig Mostert and his excellent team of doctors and nurses.
Another two weeks of continuous care and eventually his blood work revealed that he was strong enough to undergo anesthetic to wire the two jaw fractures and snip and chip at the same time. The operation was a success and Max was well on his way to recovery. The wires were to stay in place for a month allowing the jaw to heal.
He received many visitors during this time and it was wonderful to watch his little personality unfold and develop under the hands of those that poured love and attention on him. From the day I met him, the expression on his face spoke volumes in terms of the suffering he endured but his gratitude was also evident in the little tail wag which was constant, a tail wag that grew into a blurr of happiness with each day as he grew stronger and came to the realization that he was now safe and loved.
Finally the day came that he was fit for discharge, so off to join the howling hounds of Husky Rescue KZN we went where he would be fostered until a home was found. We hardly arrived when an email and a couple of whatsapp messages came through and we were on our way two days later to do a home check in Durban.
The home check was successful, albeit Max’s interaction with the four family cats was dubious to say the least. But his new family were keen to give it a try. Two weeks later, I think it is safe to say, Max has settled, is no longer chasing the cats but in fact,has aligned himself with Starsky – and together they terrorize poor George, the big ‘little’boydog of the house. As the days have gone by Max’s personality has evolved into a naughty mischievous gregarious little fellow who is actually still a pup at heart.... dubbing him with a new name....Maximus Hilarious!!!!
Max, incidentally,means ‘greatest’ and was most certainly an appropriate name for the lead character of a great rescue story. We all know the famous Gladiator’s name was Maximus, and that he was sold into a life of deprivation and slavery, as with all gladiators. For them the only thing
that made their life worthy was to die with honor. I believe Max had curled up into a little ball that day and had given up on life, just wanting to die....
But someone found him, saw his worth and gave him another chance to live a life of honor, to be a hero.... An inspiration to all of us... proof that we all deserve a second chance and that when given that second chance, to make it count!!!
Many people were instrumental in aiding Max on his road to recovery, and making his story one to remember.... You know who you are.... To all the heroes, especially Tyson, Candice and Neeri, that helped Max the Gladiator... we salute you!!!