Special Medical Needs Animals

In this new world of COVID-19, medical concerns are at the forefront of everyone's minds. Thankfully we know our pets cannot carry the virus. But life does carry on despite it all, and we've had a number of pets unexpectedly struggling through other medical issues. They have needed intensive help from us for some unique medical situations

Did you know we have a Medical Fund that is vital during times like these?

Our Medical Fund offsets the cost of diagnostic radiographs, heartworm treatment, corrective and emergency surgeries, specialized diagnostic assessments and eye care, and laboratory testing for the special-needs animals we receive. It also helps us provide resources for our volunteer fosters who are vital in providing a quiet space for our animals to heal. Because of this life-saving fund, we have been able to give special-needs animals the medical care needed to allow them to have full and happy lives in new homes. It also allows us to help partner organizations when they are in need because we believe as a community, we are stronger together.

We currently have animals with unique medical conditions and we’re working hard to provide them with the best quality of life possible. Here are their stories:


One year old Min Pin mix, Rocky, arrived at our doorstep with his owner who knew he had ingested a piece of clothing. He stopped eating and was vomiting for two days. A local animal hospital diagnosed the obstruction, but his owner chose not to pursue treatment and instead brought him to us to surrender. Although we do not usually accept emergency medical cases, we were left with no other options since this dog was in distress.

Rocky had surgery in our clinic to explore his GI tract, received IV fluids, anti-nausea medicine and of course pain medication. A large knot of cloth was found stuck/not moving in his small intestine and the rest of his intestines were very irritated from attempting to pass the obstruction.

After a few days of medications and careful monitoring, Rocky turned a corner, was starting to eat on his own, and feeling much more comfortable. When he was healed, we saw what a fun, silly and adorable boy he was.

And so did his new family, who happily brought him to his forever home right after he went up for adoption. We were beyond thrilled to see what began as such a dramatic and tense situation, end up with such a happy ending.


We are so pleased to report that Tyra has been adopted! We wish her and her new family health and happiness!

Tyra is a 7-year-old min pin mix who had a large mass on her neck that was prohibiting her from being on the adoption floor at Aurora Animal Control. We believe that in the rescue world, we are stronger together. That is why, when they contacted us to see if we could help, we jumped at the chance, especially having the medical program resources to do so. 

Once Tyra arrived at the Pet Rescue & Resource Center (PRRC), our veterinarian, Dr. Kristin went straight to work to make her feel better. Dr. Kristin and her team removed the mass along with two others that were found during the initial exam and found they were all benign. Shortly after arrival, an issue was noticed with her right eye.  A foster home diligently applied eye medications, but little improvement was noted, so she was sent to a veterinary ophthalmologist. Tyra was found to have a lens luxation where a portion of her eye moved out of place, blocking flow of fluid in the eye and causing discomfort/loss of vision. While eye drops could be given to control glaucoma and pain, since the eye was not functional, it was determined that the best course of action would be to remove her painful/diseased eye. HHS medical staff performed the enucleation (eye removal). Tyra didn’t miss a beat after surgery and was up eating her dinner a few hours later, unfazed. Stay tuned for the rest of our little fighter’s journey! 


Midnight has been adopted! We will miss him around the office and wish him and his new family all the best!

Oftentimes in the administrative offices at the PRRC, staff members see a streak of black running down the hallway or come upon an office buddy for the day.  That is where our resident office cat, Midnight spends most of his days, soaking up sun beams and demanding pets when he is so inclined. 

Due to no fault of his own, Midnight found himself in need of a new home last November and came back to his family at the shelter. This special boy faces some medical challenges we are working hard to address so that Midnight can finally have his happily-ever-after. 

Midnight has Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV). FIV cats often live long, healthy, and relatively normal lives with no symptoms at all. In fact, studies over the last ten years or so have shown that cats with FIV often live as long as otherwise healthy cats that do not have this virus. However, there are times when FIV positive cats do have severe periodontal disease because of the abnormalities with their immune systems. Unfortunately, this is the case with Midnight. 

His dental condition is very poor and he has stomatitis, which extends beyond typical gingivitis and tartar to involve inflammation, redness and pain throughout the entire mouth. Midnight also has lesions on his teeth called feline odontoclastic resorptive lesions (FORLs) which are essentially holes in the teeth caused by the cat’s body resorbing the teeth. These FORLs and stomatitis cause significant pain and can result in a cat chewing oddly, or being unwilling to eat due to the discomfort. Dental surgery is urgent for him. We will be working with our friends at Willow Grove Pet Clinic on Midnight’s surgery and helping him have the best quality of life possible. 

Pneumonia Puppies

We are happy to report that all the Pneumonia Puppies are now happy and healthy in their new homes!

Earlier this year, we pulled a group of 6 puppies from our friends at Illinois Animal Rescue. It was a really wonderful litter, and all the puppies found their forever homes the first weekend they were up for adoption. But approximately 1-week after adoption, several of the pups from this litter showed symptoms of severe respiratory illness, and two were diagnosed with severe pneumonia. Life-saving treatments including isolation, oxygen supplementation, IV-fluids and IV-antibiotics were administered to give these pups their best chance at survival. 

As the adopters rushed for medical treatment, our main priority was and is to provide them with the resources they need. We are happy to report that all the puppies are on the road to a full recovery. 

You can help make a huge difference in Tyra and Midnight’s lives and help us provide the resources needed during dire medical emergencies. Please consider giving a donation to our medical fund here.

Comments (3)

Kiomi Takada
Thu, Jun 4, 2020, 4:26 AM
I feel very thankful that I could read that awesome article. The way you provide values through your article is incredible. Thanks for sharing. Keep posting.
Kathie Irving
Sun, Apr 19, 2020, 5:37 PM
You are all amazing! Thank you for your love and compassion in helping our animals and for going above and beyond realizing that every life matters! ❤️
Darlene Zitko
Thu, Apr 9, 2020, 6:59 AM
I love everything about your organization. I'm on the website daily to find my forever friend. I will continue to help out when I can.

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