Kevin--11-year-old male fostered in MA
Rescue Contact: Peggy Turner
Kevin is one of the sweetest little Kerries you'd ever want to meet. Weighing only 24 lbs and standing 17 inches tall, he is all gentleman. Sadly, he came into rescue after much neglect and ended up in a pound in need of surgery. A wonderful rescue organization came along and paid for Kevin's surgeries. He had a benign oral tumor preventing him from closing his mouth or being able to eat, and a benign tumor on his rear quarters preventing him from sitting down. He also had to have 20 teeth pulled. (Not to worry, he still has 22 teeth and eats fine!)
Kevin has been in a foster home with other Kerries since mid-July, and has healed beautifully. He has put on weight, his coat has come in beautifully, and his stamina has returned. He is a charmer. Kevin loves to be walked on lead with absolutely no ulling, loves to retrieve tennis balls and prance as he returns them to you, runs in circles of pure happiness when his food is prepared, and most of all adores being cuddled. He also enjoys being groomed.
Kevin's age is unknown, but we guess he is about 9 years young. Since he lived his whole life with an elderly owner, a quiet home would be best with someone home during the day. He enjoys the company of female dogs who are not too exuberant, but would also love to be someone's one and only special guy.
An Update by Martha and Carl Hoffmann
January 3, 2008
My husband and I are the fortunate ones who got to adopt Kevin. We were
the beneficiaries of lots of hard work on the part of Peggy and Gary, and the
shelter before them, in getting Kevin needed surgery and back in shape, not
to mention housebroken as well. He is doing wonderfully well and has been
such a great addition to our home. We are new to rescue, coming upon it
because my husband said "no more puppies!" Little did I know, we'd end up
with an 11-yr-old. But what a gem he is! And it is so wonderful to know
that we have given Kevin a good home for the rest of his days.
Kevin is a bundle of love. He is a total lap dog for as much of the day as
we can give him. We lost our beloved 15-yr-old Wheaten terrier Clancy just
about a month before receiving Kevin, and Peggy and I have had numerous
conversations about how similar in temperament Kevin is to Clancy. There
are so many little idiosyncrasies that are so similar, it's uncanny. It
really makes our loss that much more bearable. The best of all is that he
comes with me to the nursing home where I work - - he is perfectly suited
for the residents there. He loves to just stand by the different residents
and have them rub his back or scratch his butt. When he tires, he just lays
down next to someone. Everyone loves him, and it does ease his one
problem of separation anxiety.
We have two other dogs in our house, both senior females - - a 13-yr-old
Border terrier and an 11-yr-old Bichon/Westie/Poodle mix. They all get
along fine, though as you can imagine, the mixed breed is a bit fussy about
Kevin getting in her space. Kevin loves his tennis balls, though having
only 1 tooth left (yep, all were extracted due to periodontal disease before
he came here), he has a bit of a time holding onto them. He's a bit clutzy
running around with them, so if the girls are smart, they clear out of the
way for that activity. He doesn't always know his boundaries with the other
dogs, but we're working through that. He walks perfectly on a leash.
We can't imagine any better dog for us right now. He is a love, has been
very easy to adapt to, and really has been pretty much our dream dog. The
only issues we're grappling with are his 'potty' issues - - he's a bit of a
priss and doesn't like much to go out in the yard for that purpose; also
doesn't like wet feet, cold feet, snowy feet - - you get the picture. He
likes to be accompanied and doesn't seem to know how to be focused. On
the other hand, our girls respond to the 'go potty' command. Kevin will soil
his crate, so that's not a deterrent either. Another issue is these
interdigital "cysts" that he gets very frequently. Of all the health issues
we've dealt with our dogs over the years, we've never had this one.
Peggy suspects allergies, and I'm inclined to agree with her, so we're going
to try changing food and see if that helps.
We wanted to thank all of you who helped with Kevin, especially Peggy and
Gary, and you Angels out there who supported him. You have made a great
difference in our lives and in his!!
Martha and Carl Hoffmann
An Update by Martha and Carl Hoffmann
June 8, 2009
I was happy to get some news of older Kerries since we're dealing with one
ourselves, though only 13. We adopted Kevin a year and a half ago through
the KBTF by way of our now dear friend Peggy Turner, who rescued him. He
was in very sad shape when he was taken on threat of arrest from his owner's
home. Evidently his long-time owner suffered severe dementia and just
couldn't care for him. He was very thin (about 23 lb) and had several large
tumors (one in his mouth so he couldn't eat, one on his butt so he couldn't
sit), which were removed by the shelter where he ended up. Peggy fostered
him for 4 months, bringing him back to health and housebreaking him.
Unfortunately, he did have to have all his teeth removed because of the
tumor. He suffered separation anxiety. He had almost continuous cysts,
which would break open and bleed, on and between his toes.
Kevin has adjusted marvelously to our home, even with his grumbling little
sister (a 12-yr-old Bichon mix) and through the loss of his other sis, a
13-yr-old Border Terrier. Kevin filled a great void in our lives after the
passing of our first pup, Clancy, a Wheaten, at almost 15 years. He still
has little fits of anxiety when we leave, but so much better than the first
9 months or so when he would often eliminate in the house when we were gone.
Kevin now weighs in at a healthy 28 lb - - he's a small Kerry.
My concerns of late are that he is *losing* his appetite. He also has been
diagnosed with GERD. Carafate and Pepcid seemed to help a bit. We still
have him on Pepcid twice a day. It's just that he always ate at mealtime,
and his treat at bedtime, though he was never food obsessed by any means
(that happened recently to our Bichon mix who had to be put on steroids for
a time, and she has become ravenous). Now, there are whole meals that he
just passes up, or he'll eat a little. This can happen multiple times in a
week. He also sometimes vomits after drinking and just before meal time.
He has had the bowel problem like you describe during walks, though I can
see where he might be prone to that. When we first got him, for many
months, we had to whisk him out the door *immediately* after eating or he'd
poop right there.
Otherwise, his hearing is going, and his eyesight isn't the best. He, like
Heddy, also has dry eye, and like you, I just keep up with cleaning the gunk
out of his eyes and we use artificial tears too (just saline). He's
beginning with elevated kidney levels, but requires a grain-free diet (this
has totally eliminated the toe cysts). The problem being that grain-free
diets are high in protein and our vet would like to see his protein intake
lower. Our Wheaten in his old age began having rear leg troubles, dragging
his nails and such. It seemed to clear up somewhat, but we lived with it
until other things took him down.
For the record, our Kevin is the sweetest dog you'd ever want to meet.
Peggy gave us a great gift with him, even if we'll only have him for several
Martha in NJ, with Piper the Bichon mix and Kevin our KBT.
An Update by Martha and Carl Hoffmann
August 17, 2009
I'll add my testimonial to the others, and feel free to pass it on to
potential adopters. We adopted Kevin through the Foundation when he was 11.
He's now 13.
What a major doll, and like Arrow, he still bounces around
with his rope toy. Surely he sleeps more than the younger Kerries, but that
could be seen as a benefit for those who are not so active themselves. He
is also on a special diet, grain-free to eradicate his toe cysts. Natural
Balance has some great grain-free foods. He also had tumors removed at the
shelter before we got him, and had all but one tooth removed as well.
That's easy, just soak his kibble. Blood work and exams show he's still in
great health. Slight increases in some kidney values, but not so bad. Lots
of warts, but that goes with the breed, I'm told. Yes, it will be very sad
to have to say good-bye to him after only having him for several years. I
don't look forward to that, having had to do the same with 2 of our other
terriers over the last year and a half.
Would I do it all over again? You bet. Kevin's a gem, and very easy to live with.
Martha in NJ with elderly rescue KBT Kevin and (also elderly) Bichon/Westie mix Piper.