Weds 16th June: Tulip found!

All of the day’s events were forgotten when the news came through that Tulip had been found, two months after she ran away from her foster home on Cheung Chau.  Although since then most people had forgotten about the dogs that went missing during the run-up to the move from Pokfulam to Tai Po (Garland and Genie still haven’t been found), one volunteer in particular never gave up and spent every single weekend and free day searching, with other volunteers joining as and when they could.

In this photo taken by a tourist Tulip was already starting to look thin, but at least it confirmed her whereabouts and that she was still alive

There had been earlier reports of Tulip having been seen in one particular area, and in fact a tourist had taken a photo.  Although many dogs have a similar look to Tulip her harness was unmistakable so we knew it was definitely her, and the subsequent searches remained focused on that particular spot.  However following that one confirmed sighting Tulip seemed to  disappear again, although we now know that she never left the area but stayed hidden on the rocks which were out of sight from anywhere but the sea, and it was only by taking a

Can you see Tulip?

sampan that the search team finally spotted her. Even then it was pure luck that she stood up at that one particular moment that the sampan was passing as she would otherwise have been impossible to see.  As it was the volunteers had quite a climb over the rocks to reach Tulip, and it was only because she was so weak from lack of food and water that she didn’t run away when they approached.  In fact she was only a few days away from

While the volunteers on the sampan (including photographer Yanki) watched, the ground team made their way across the rocks towards Tulip

certain death at that point, so all I can say is that whatever you call it – fate, luck, coincidence or the hand of God – was on Tulip’s side at that moment.

Being severely dehydrated and nothing more than a bag of bones, Tulip had to spend the night in hospital on a drip,

Siew Yen and Tulip finally find each other

but she will be taken afterwards to join her sister, Lilac, at the home of the one person who refused to give up hope.  Siew Yen, and all the volunteers who also gave up their free time to join the search, thank you.

While all of this was going on I was at the vet with my latest group of baby pups for their first vaccination.  Joining them was Susie K, the puppy found by a volunteer which I had brought back to Lamma.  I’d noticed that her ear flaps were very white inside, and although she was eating and playing normally I mentioned it to the vet who agreed that she was unusually pale. Blood tests confirmed that poor Susie K has tick fever (babesia), so she’ll be going back to the vet tomorrow.  The good thing is that young puppies respond well to the treatment, so I’m optimistic that Susie K will too.

Another puppy that has a problem is Booty, a very pretty boy with long white ‘socks’.  One of his eyes is very swollen and cloudy, and he can’t see anything with it.  It’s probable that he will lose the eye as it’s already too damaged, but we’re trying with some eyedrops and antibiotics before making the decision to remove it.  These puppies have a hard start in life, and it’s just amazing that so many make it in one piece.  As it is this litter all have the rats tail and bald patches that are standard in puppies that have lived outside, especially in the rainy season.  It almost always clears without medication, as all that’s needed is a dry home and good food.

Two of the puppies went to a foster home after their vet visit, but there was another one waiting for me at the sampan.  This little guy was about to be eaten when he was saved by a volunteer who spotted the man making off with his intended meal.  It’s a horrible thing to think about but from what I can gather there is still a lot of dog and puppy eating that goes on in some parts of the territory.  At least there’s one that escaped the cooking pot.

Tulip's very thin but safe

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16 Responses to “Weds 16th June: Tulip found!”

  1. Rachael Says:

    You’re an angel Siew Yen, thank you for never giving up!

  2. Abby and Lou Says:

    That’s disgusting! Divine timing for that puppy too!

  3. Helen Y Says:

    BIG applause to Siew Yen and team!!! Tulip, please get better soon.

  4. cheryl kwok Says:

    Amazing determination on the team’s part! Saints!

  5. Flo Says:

    Sally, are you still looking for muzzles? Would any of these work?

    http://www.noblepetshop.com/en/advanced_search.html?action=DoSearch&keywords=muzzle&javaID=a7c1625395f3b98b3ab7453720074b3e&x=14&y=7

    • Sally Says:

      Interesting, but I’ve tried the leather style ones and they don’t seem to fit any dog. The plastic ones need a lot of modification and have the breaking problem, while the wrap-round ones aren’t suitable for any exercise, only things like vet visits etc.

  6. kandy Says:

    Love is the key of miracle. Congratulations to Siew Yen, the whole team and Tulip. Best wishes to Garland and Genie.

  7. Ivan Says:

    What absolutely fantastic news! Many thanks to Siew Yen and team- fenomenal work- it is people like you that propel others! Hope Tulip gets better and gains A LOT of weight soon!

  8. linda Says:

    I second the big applause for Siew Yen and team. What an amazing story. And what amazing photos.

  9. Yolanda Says:

    Great News & Great Job!!!!How could you guys spot Tulip. His color is almost the same as those rocks…..Big applause to all HKDR volunteers! Wishes Tulip gains his strength and muscle back SOON!!!!!

  10. kai Says:

    She really is a bag of bones…. so glad she has been found, poor girl… (well, lucky girl now! Get well soon!)
    How did the tourist know about HKDR though?

    • Sally Says:

      Siew Yen and the team have been to Cheung Chau ever since Tulip went missing and there are posters up everywhere. The tourist thought the dog she saw might be Tulip because of the harness and collar, and she knew from the posters that a dog was lost and who to contact.

  11. Eu Says:

    miracle does happen!!!

  12. Fiona Says:

    Bravo to everyone who made this happen. And definitely just in time looking at poor Tulip’s skeletal body. It’s just so wonderful when a dog that has been lost, is found. Siew Yen and Tulip are meant to be together.

  13. Helen Yeung Says:

    Too overwhelmed by the good news of Tulip’s return and forget to ask if there is a prosecution against the person who almost kill and eat the puppy saved by our volunteer. Whereabout was the puppy saved? We can alert dog lovers/volunteers who live in the area to keep an eye on any suspicious location/people.

    • Sally Says:

      Nobody can be prosecuted when nothing has actually happened. This puppy came from Lamma, but there are many areas in the New Territories where I’m told puppy eating is still quite common.

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