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“Team Susan” Saves Orphaned Puppies

“You never know what you will get when you get these kind of calls. Your adrenaline starts flowing,” says Susan, long time puppy rescue volunteer and foster mom. It was early February of 2021 when Susan’s phone rang. The person on the other end told her about a momma dog who had died unexpectedly and left behind five chihuahua puppies that were only five days old. “I don’t often get orphaned pups, but when I do time is critical. They had not been fed for seven hours and I lived an hour away. So I grabbed the rescue supplies I had and rushed out the door,” she recalls. But one thing Susan didn’t have on hand was a puppy milk replacer. “I started calling around to my friends to see if they had any supplies to feed such young pups. My friend who breeds English Bulldogs and Frenchie’s had some Breeder’s Edge Foster Care milk replacer, tubing and syringes I could use, so she met me there and together went to work,” Susan recalls.

Susan Starts Tube Feeding

Together the two friends immediately started tube feeding the babies. “When I saw these pups and how tiny and frail they were I was scared they would not survive. These pups were the size of mice,” Susan says. After an initial feeding, Susan loaded up the puppies and brought them back to her place to continue round the clock feedings. “I have done foster care for a long time and I’ve seen a lot. I understand how puppies can look well one minute, but then crash fast, so I knew it was critical to keep feeding them and keep them warm,” she recalls. Susan set up a nursery in her kitchen and as the days and weeks passed, the five puppies grew and thrived. “I was exhausted after all those all night feedings, but after four weeks they had tripled in size and were right on with development. I eventually stopped the tube feeding and switched to a puppy mush using the Foster Care Canine Milk Replacer. I continue to be amazed at how much the Foster Care has helped these puppies grow,” says Susan.

Dedicated Foster Mom

For nearly three decades, Susan has dedicated her time to helping rescue and foster puppies. She’s currently a volunteer with the Grainger County Humane Society in rural Tennessee. “Our small rescue is located in a poor rural county with no animal control or shelter. Our work is totally funded by donations and we have to be careful with every dollar,” she explains. But Susan hasn’t let that stop her from helping however she can. “I’ve done rescues for years. I’ve helped dozens of bottle babies. But when you have an emergency situation, it takes a team,” she states. Susan has since purchased Foster Care from Revival to make sure she is always ready for the next time she or someone else she knows gets a call for help. “Once I saw firsthand how well the Foster Care helped these chihuahua puppies thrive, I chose to spend my own money for this milk replacer so I can be ready at all hours if the need arises,” she says.
Shelley Hexom

Written by: Shelley Hexom

Content Manager

Shelley Hexom is Revival's Content Manager and helps develop educational pet health resources. A three-time Emmy® Award-winning news anchor, Shelley works with Revival's Director of Veterinary Services, Dr. Marty Greer, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, to help create useful and easy-to-understand articles, videos, and webinars. Shelley received her bachelor's degree in Mass Communications from Winona State University in 2002. As a pet owner, Shelley enjoys time with her Boxer mix, Sally. Shelley has been part of the Revival Paw Squad since 2016.

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