Sun 18th July: Bulldogs & bulldogs

This is the life a breeder dog can expect. 24 hours in a small cage, for its useful life. If you buy from a pet shop or breeder, this is what you are supporting.

The bulldog story dominated everything today, and nobody really knew what was happening throughout the day until it was actually a reality.  I had been told that there were twenty bulldogs being given up by a breeder, but that’s all the information I had to begin with.  I assumed they were English bulldogs, then I was told no, they were French.  I asked when would they be available and was told Sunday.  Could we just take a few?  No, it was all or nothing.  The breeder actually wanted to sell the dogs on to other breeders, and taking them all out at once was the only option.  What to do, what to do?  I posted the story on Facebook, first as English, then French bulldogs, hoping that we would have some adopters or fosters lined up before the dogs arrived.  The confusion about the actual breed didn’t help.

The events were unfolding as I was at Whiskers’n’Paws with the puppies, and (via a Chinese volunteer) I was being updated on what was happening.  “They” (and it’s always very secretive when dealing with the breeders as they never want their names or whereabouts revealed) said they were on their way to Sheung Shui with a van to pick the dogs up. When “they” arrived, they said there were seventeen dogs, not twenty, and one was a mother with three newborn pups.  Through the interpreter we arranged that the mother would come to Ap Lei Chau and back to Lamma, rather than going to Tai Po.  The rest of the dogs would be dropped off first.  Then the drama started.

How many bulldogs can you cram into the back of a small van?

The dogs were indeed English bulldogs, and they had been crammed into the back of the van in small cages for the short trip from Sheung Shui to Tai Po, but even this was too long for one of the dogs who was dead from overheating when they arrived.  I know that the volunteers and staff at Tai Po tried desperately to revive the dog, even giving mouth-to-mouth (how do you do that with a bulldog?), but it was hopeless.  These dogs can suffer heatstroke just by being outside in the heat, but being crammed in a stifling van, one cage on top of another, was a death sentence.

It was incredibly frustrating being on the end of a phone and not being able to help.  All I could do was to ask if the other dogs were OK, and if they had been dumped in the paddling pool or something to cool them down.  Yes, they had all been hosed and seemed to be OK except for one of the babies.  Because of the drama of trying to resuscitate the overheated bulldog it was too late to send the mother and pups to Ap Lei Chau, so I suggested moving them to the terrace of the “human room” where at least she would be safe from other dogs and infection, but it was still only an overnight solution.  It was the same with the adults (all female except for one male, I gathered).  They could stay the night in the play area, but by morning when the sun rose they would have to have a cooler space.

Baby bulldog while at breeder. They will stay with their mother for 2 months, and then adopters will be very carefully vetted.

The story continues as I type, and we urgently need homes or fosters for these dogs.  Please get back to me if you can help.  This is a matter of life or death, as shown by the poor dogs that didn’t make it.  Sincere thanks to everyone at Tai Po who dealt with this unexpected and unusual situation brilliantly.  Life is never dull at HKDR!

Meet Cat, an amazing and very special girl

One of the regular visitors to Lamma finally managed to get a photo of Cat.   I have no idea where she came from or why she decided to move in, but she lives on the roof with Samantha, a dog whose story I told in one of my previous blogs.  They are a very happy couple, and the other dogs seem to accept Cat’s presence without question.


20 Responses to “Sun 18th July: Bulldogs & bulldogs”

  1. Angie Says:

    I only hope you come back to this planet as a breeder’s dog.

  2. May Says:

    Sally, did the 3 little ones survive last nite?

  3. fianna chi ( dordor ) Says:

    This is Fianna I have also adopted Buckle, both Buckle & Dexter are staying with my brother David Chic right now. Due to I was moving, they are very good there. Since i read about the bulldog rescue. I can take or foster 1 or 2 females now. I used to have bulldog for 12yrs which juste past away in Jan 2010. I totally understand this breed and how to handle them. the reason of taking female is because of my 1 of my golden doesn’t get along with male bulldog at all. I will try to contact the office asap.

  4. Yolanda Yan Says:

    Hi Sally, I feel very sorry for all these mother dogs (maybe because we are the same gender). They indeed are quite friendly (to human I mean). Unfortunately our living environment won’t allow us to either foster or adopt them. Would it be helpful if we sponsor one or two in a private air-conditioned broading home for a month or so to avoid the heat (like what’s done during the big move)? I really want to help them. Please let us know your thought. I hope they continue to doing well after last night.

    • Sally Says:

      Hi Yolanda,

      Seeing them is quite shocking. The older ones are obese with huge teats like cows’ udders. They must have just lain there being made to have and feed litter after litter. If there is space in a nice boarding kennel then I think that would be lovely for them. They are all super friendly dogs, and it’s such a shame. The lucky ones that are still young got away in time.

      • Yolanda Says:

        Yes, Sally. There is one with deformed teats and we almost lost her if without the great work of yesterday volunteers. But the way they react to our human touch move me a lot. How could people do this to them????

        Enough mumbbling now and let’s back to reality – would you like me to try to find a kennel and get back to HKDR? Or would you have contacts of your own. One thing I concern about is: Could we pass the health check requirments by those kennels? Any suggestions?

      • Sally Says:

        I’m sure it was fat Melon that almost died as she weighs 41kg, about double what she should be. She’s now on Lamma with two sisters, Pear and Avocado and yes, they are really sweet dogs, very affectionate. Amazing really. The odgs that we had checked at the vet were all healthy, with nothing wrong other than over-breeding and over-weight, and skin problems in the folds of fat (but not infectious or anything like mange). They should be fine for kennels. We like Petworld.

      • Yolanda Says:

        Great to know they are all healthy. Just called Petworld and they mentionoed that they did receive another enquiry earlier today. Petworld is willing to help HKDR here. They will reserve a room or two for our dogs. I will work with the other volunteer (the one who called them earlier) for the logistics. Action, action, action.

        In addition, Petworld mentioned that they have customers who are looking for puppy bulldogs and they might be able to help out. Would be great if HKDR could forward them the information.

        At least someone in this world still cares about animals. Great job, Sally. HKDR definitely is a brand.

      • Sally Says:

        I’m not surprised that people are interested in the puppies as they cost a lot in pet shops, but there is only one survivor and we will make sure that the home is the best one we can find with a guarantee of desexing.

  5. Ben Says:

    Hi- what can I do to help? Is it still possible to foster?

  6. Gloria Says:

    Why have to be so secretive when dealing with breeders? Isn’t it our goal to get rid of them?

    • Sally Says:

      Yes, I believe everyone who cares about dogs would like to see an end to the awful breeding farms. The reason for the secrecy is, as I understand it, that the breeders are illegal so they don’t want anyone to know where they operate from. Some people act as go-betweens, and have access to the breeders but only on the understanding that they don’t reveal any information. If this confidentiality agreement is broken, the breeders will stop allowing dogs to be taken and will simply dump them in the hillsides (as happens anyway). I don’t like it, but I understand why for now it has to be this way. I personally have no idea where the breeders are or even who the go-betweens are. It’s an underground world.

  7. Manuela Says:

    Hi Sally
    Is so great to see the huge reply you got for these poor babies. I was away of Macau and did not read your blog for one week. How such little time brought so many newcomers! I have tried to contribute through Visa, through Paypal and even being able to reach Macau going through countries and then China I wasnt able to make a donation. Macau wasnt accepted. Do you have a safe postal address to send you a cheque? How much is needed to foster monthly a dog? By HKSBC bank transfer per instance. Then, on one of my goings to HK I would like to go and visit my foster doggie.

    • Sally Says:

      Hi Manuela, and thanks for your comment and support. We do have the Life Saver Club for those wanting to make regular donations and sponsor a specific dogs, or you can donate via PayPal. The mailing address is Unit 6, G/F, Aberdeen Marina Tower, 8 Shum Wan Road, Aberdeen, Hong Kong. Please don’t send anything to the Tai Po address, as for some reason the Post Office won’t deliver there. Information on methods of donating can be found on the website.

  8. bettyc Says:

    a Agree with Angie !! Believe in Karma.

    The special cat seems to be a mircochipped & a desexed boy, with the ri right ear-tip missing. Is he on his own, how can get here…interesting.

    • Sally Says:

      Actually Cat is a girl, and she just turned up one day and moved in with Samantha. At that time Samantha had just lost her mate, Sammy, so I believe Cat came to her as a replacement.

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