By Barb & Davida & Denise

Barb's Time With Shalimar

Chapter One

How could any dog survive in such deplorable conditions? Miss Shalimar was found in a disgusting puppymill in Southern Iowa. She lived in a cage with another Shih Tzu named Karma. The miller had recently placed an old male poodle with them in attempt to breed both of them. Shalimar was nearly bald, her feet were infected from filth and she was blind.

A rescue angel named Chris picked up both the girls and called me. Shally was bathed several times and came to me the next day. I took one look at her and sobbed. Never in my life had I seen such a tortured little soul. Her body was swollen from a thyroid condition that had affected her skin. Shally looked like a huge football. I can't tell you how much anger I felt each time I looked at her.

The angels were with her as she came in heat in the next few days or she would have been bred again at the age of 11! I started her on thyroid medication and it immediately helped her condition. However, her next health problem then became apparent. One of her feet began to swell and drain, the first of several infections to come.

This was the first chapter in three heroic years for a little dog with the biggest heart and an unbelievable will to live. I feel blessed that I met her and was able to see her happy at last and to have the privilege of holding her again in her last days. Shally was an inspiration to all of us.

Anty Barb

Davida's Time with Shalimar

Chapter Two

Shally was only with me a short time. She came just to get vetted and stayed only until that was done.
I knew her history, where she came from and how she got here to this point but it still didn't prepare me for how she looked.

Day 1 and off to the vet we went.
Day 2 and off to the vet we went again.
And Day 3 and Day 4 and Day 5 we went to the vet again!
We had a break on Day 6 but were back again on Day 7 and Day 8.

Every day something new seemed to need to be treated at the vet! Shally got spayed. Shally had a dental. Shally's skin needed treating. Shally's feet ballooned up like a giant golf ball with infection. Shally had so many things wrong with her we almost didn't know what to treat first. Shally held the all time record for number of trips to the vet in one week! Shally was so sick it was a miracle she was even alive!

But survive she did! She was a trooper and hung in there! When we finally felt the vet had done all he could for awhile, Shalimar went to live with Denise to rest and heal and learn that there were good people in life who would love her and feed her good food and just let her enjoy life for a change.


Denise's Time with Shalimar

Chapter Three

What can I say about this amazing dog. Ms. Shalimar, or Shally as she became known to us, was blind, had infected feet and had just come thru some terrible health issues. She immediately endeared herself to me by spinning in circles endlessly before she finally "did her business". I had never seen a dog do that before and was informed that the years upon years of living in a small cage had probably caused this behavior.

Shally didn't do much but sleep and eat when she first came to my home. Little by little, she regained her strength and became more active. She healed and "found her voice" and loved to bark and bark and bark! She became more attached to the other dogs in the house and eventually accepted their gentle cuddles and desire to lay next to her. She also learned how to find me no matter where I was by sniffing the air and listening to my voice.

Shally never really liked to be held, but loved to have you close. She found a spot on an oversized chair and that became her "safe" spot in the house. When she wanted attention or needed to go out she would bark and bark and bark. She became strong and healthy and enjoyed walking around the fenced back yard, and would even play with me on occasion.

About a year ago, I found a large tumor on her breast. I took her to the vet only to discover that she had cancer. My heart sank at the thought of more surgery for this precious girl. But, we had no choice. The surgery was done and Ms. Shally recovered yet again. She again became the healthy happy lady she had been before the cancer. She did not, however, appreciate my frequent exams for more tumors!

Shally care and loving time became the staple of my evening. Blind old dogs need and deserve more attention, so she got it. I marveled over this dog who had seen so much abuse and bad health and wondered how she ever got so strong. At times, I kidded myself that she would outlive me.

In April of this year, Shally began to loose weight. Nothing dramatic, just enough for you to notice over time. She still was eating well and had no other apparent health issues. But, in May, she seemed to be failing in her health. Trips to the vet and various medications would temporarily take care of the problem but by June, it was obvious that Ms. Shally was losing the battle of the years. She had a horrible seizure and stopped breathing. I held her and cried and loved on her, thinking these were our last moments together. After two hours, Ms. Shally had once again made a comeback. Unfortunately, she would only live another week after her seizure. But in that week, we cuddled and cried and told her what a brave, strong girl she was. I learned more about the dignity of life in that last week Ms. Shally was with me than I had learned in the prior 41 years. She never stopped loving, or being thrilled at having her ears rubbed. When she could finally take no more, we took that long last ride to the vets. She laid in my arms, very content, as we waited for that last moment. She left this life in peace and again with dignity.

Ms. Shally - - thank you for coming to me. Thank you for the lessons you taught me. Thank you for letting me be there, you are one very special lady.


(Tribute from Shalimar's Sponsors)

Shally, as difficult as it is to realize you’re gone, it cheers us to know you’re in a better place. You’re happy, healthy and young again, as you were before the bad people took away the love and care every pet deserves.
Bless your foster moms and this rescue for giving you the happy life on earth you should have had all along.
We know you’re up there praying for an end to puppy mills. One of these days, Shally--one of these days.

Alice & Bud Meredith

We wish to thankfully acknowledge Bud and Alice Meredith as Shalimar's sponsors who helped us so much in providing funds to pay many of her vet bills. Bud & Alice, you were Shally's Angels and your support meant more than you can ever imagine to Shally and her foster moms! We knew we could always count on you!

We also invite anyone who needs to see the proof of what happens to dogs who live in puppymills to visit Shalimar's page and read her story! Please spread the word! Don't buy from petstores and dogs like Shally won't be condemned to life in the hell of a small cage!

No reprints of this story without the expressed written permission of the author,

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