Free Consultation


The Pups Who Mended Broken Hearts and Saved Lives

The Pups Who Mended Broken Hearts and Saved Lives

A Canine Cure for Heartache

You know, the loss of a beloved pet can leave a hole in your heart the size of the Grand Canyon. It’s as if a part of your very soul has been ripped away, leaving you struggling to find the strength to carry on. I’ve been there, my friend, and let me tell you, it ain’t easy. But what if I told you that the pups who had once captured our hearts could also be the ones to mend them?

Shamus: A Puppy with a Broken Heart

Take the story of Shamus, for instance – a playful chocolate Labrador retriever pup who was facing a fatal heart condition. When the breeder who owned him couldn’t afford the $5,000 price tag for the life-saving surgery, the team at Hyannis Animal Hospital in Massachusetts stepped in to save the day. Veterinarian Kevin Smith spent two weeks studying up on the procedure, even reaching out to a local heart surgeon, Dr. Paul Pirundini, for assistance in the operating room.

Shamus was suffering from a persistent right aortic arch, a condition that formed a band between his pulmonary artery and aorta, essentially choking off his esophagus and preventing him from swallowing. “It’s basically a little ligament that chokes the esophagus,” Smith explained. “These dogs have to have surgery or they will die.” Rather than euthanize the pup, the team at Hyannis Animal Hospital decided to take a chance and perform the high-risk surgery themselves.

A Canine Comeback

After a nerve-wracking 1.5-hour procedure, Shamus was on the mend. The now-10-week-old puppy bounced back with the unbridled energy that young Labradors are known for, chasing water bottles and stealing blankets in the vet’s office. “He’s supposed to rest for three weeks,” Smith laughed. “He’s not being very cooperative.”

Shamus was eventually adopted by an anonymous veterinarian, with a clean bill of health and a bright future ahead of him. As for the medical team that saved his life, they couldn’t have been prouder. “I could tell it pained (Pirundini) to be the assistant,” Smith said of the renowned heart surgeon. “He’s so unflappable it’s mind-blowing.”

Piglet: A Tuxedo Kitten with a Big Heart

But Shamus’ story is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to our four-legged friends mending broken hearts. Take Piglet, for example – a fearless tuxedo kitten who underwent life-saving surgery at just a few weeks old. Piglet came to the Best Friends Lifesaving Center in Salt Lake City along with his mom and siblings, all of them ready to find their forever homes.

But it was Piglet who caught the eye of his foster volunteer, who noticed the little guy was having trouble nursing. Turns out, Piglet had a condition called megaesophagus, causing him to inhale milk into his lungs and vomit every time he ate. Things took a turn for the worse when Piglet started having trouble breathing, and a CT scan revealed an even more serious issue – a congenital condition called persistent right aortic arch that was constricting his esophagus.

Beating the Odds

Despite his young age and tiny size, Piglet underwent emergency open-chest surgery to correct the problem. “Food could not travel to the stomach as it usually would,” explains Best Friends veterinarian Dr. Megan McCarthy. “He was in dire need of surgery to correct that.” And correct it they did, with Piglet bouncing back and ultimately being adopted by his foster family.

Today, Piglet is happy, healthy, and as brave as ever, living his best life alongside his new feline friend, Starling. His story is a testament to the power of veterinary care and the unwavering dedication of the teams at places like I Have Dogs who are committed to saving lives, no matter the odds.

Finding Solace in Shelter Pups

These pups with broken hearts aren’t just saving lives – they’re mending them, too. After all, who better to help us heal from the loss of a beloved pet than another furry friend? As someone who’s been through the heartache of losing a four-legged family member, I can attest to the power of a wagging tail and a sloppy kiss to lift the spirits.

A Sanctuary for the Soul

That’s why organizations like Best Friends Animal Sanctuary are so vital. Nestled in the stunning red-rock canyons of Utah, this no-kill sanctuary is home to hundreds of cats, dogs, horses, and other animals waiting to be adopted into loving homes. These pets aren’t just looking for a family – they’re offering a chance to mend a broken heart.

So, if you’re still grappling with the loss of a furry friend, don’t be afraid to open your home and your heart to a new four-legged companion. Who knows – that playful pup or cuddly kitten might just be the cure you’ve been searching for all along.

Tags :
Share This :

Get Updates with our



Join our passionate community of dog lovers. Embrace the journey of companionship with Ihavedogs, where every dog gets the best of care and love.