This amazing story about a special needs dog named Annie hit the news yesterday, but I knew I had to share it with readers like you, who are interested in making life better for pets with disabilities.
Annie is a Border collie mix who was born with a condition called Megaesophagus. This disorder causes poor muscle tone in her throat and makes it hard for food to move down her esophagus and empty into the stomach. Dogs with the condition don’t feel full and will continue to eat large quantities of food if no one is around to monitor them. The food stretches and enlarges their esophagus. Annie is prone to regurgitation and even aspiration unless she eats in an upright position.
While it might seem scary to take care of a dog that has trouble swallowing, Elizabeth Nash who adopted Annie in 2013 from an animal shelter in Colorado stepped up to the challenge.
The Huffington Post reported Nash saying, “She’s been with me for a year and a half now, and she is a happy, healthy 3-year-old with a wonderful quality of life. While it was initially overwhelming, her feeding is now part of our daily routine, and, like clockwork, she sits by her chair when it’s time to eat. Other than her feeding routine, she does all of the things that dogs love to do.”
A special highchair was built for Annie and that’s where she eats her meals twice a day and hangs out afterward for 20 minutes to make sure her food is fully digested.
In between meals, Annie’s life is pretty dog-gone happy. She loves to run and hike and play with her newly adopted doggie sibling.
Here’s another story you might like: Paralyzed Kitten Is Learning To Walk
Check out my stories on the American Animal Hospital Association – PetsMatter Newsletter
Photo: Elizabeth Nash/ The Huffington Post