Petfinder Featured Pet

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Eyes Have It...

We have a pair of dogs relinquished by a commercial breeder, a Class A USDA licensed dog breeder, that have such severe dry eye that their vision is significantly impaired due to corneal scarring and pigmentation as a result of the disease. The dry eye is so severe that they have ZERO tear production and are on LIFE LONG medications. One of Little Princess's eyes is prone to rupture. They are both on medications that provide comfort and relief.

One medication helps slightly with tear production, but the ophthalmologist said the eyes are so bad, that there will be little to no improvement in natural tear production. Once the tear glands completely quit, there is little medically available to get them to function again. The other medications are for decreasing inflamation of the eyes which occurs because there is no lubrication in the eyes. Another is an artificial lubricant for the eyes, to do what the body can no longer do for itself. I discussed this pair of dogs several blogs ago and I bring them up for a reason.

At the suggestion of a friend, I went online to see what the USDA inspection reports say for the kennel from which they came. Here it is word for word:

"Inside of the facility at the main address during the inspection a strong ammonia odor was present in the facility to the point that it burned my eyes in parts of the facility (north end). Ventilation needs to be increased to minimize odors, ammonia levels, and moisture condensation and provide for the health and well-being of the animals. (Affects approx. 124 animals)"

Can you imagine LIVING in a place that burned your eyes constantly? Can you imagine living in a place with 123 other animals urinating and defecating in the room! They allowed five days to repair the problem, but no follow up inspection report is filed. The report from 2009 made no notes of cleanliness issues or ammonia odors, and it was the same inspector, so hopefully this means that kennel cleaned up it's act at some point. But how long did these dogs live like this. Long enough to make their eyes water so much that their tear glands quit working.

I noticed another problem. Inspectors do not announce their arrival as the inpections are supposed to be a surprise.

The annual surprise inspections for this kennel were performed on Feb 8 2007, Feb 13 2008, and Feb 12 2009. In late January 2010, I would start powerwashing, powergrooming, and getting prepared for the next SURPRISE inspection if I owned this kennel. Predictability is not good when it comes to surprise inspections.

I saw no posting of any follow up inspection reports between Feb 13 2008 and Feb 12 2009. Do inspectors follow up with their reports? Do they write up issues and just expect them to make repairs without any follow up inspection? Do they just wait the year out for the next annual inspection to see if the changes were made?

And who suffers when there is no follow up, or when the surprise inspection is expected?

Sasha and Princess did.

Some of my readers have sent us donations to help pay for Sasha and Princess to visit a veterinary ophthalmologist. The donations also helped us pay for their expensive medications, which we will need to buy more of soon. When these adorable dogs are placed for adoption, we will send updates to those of you who made those generous donations. Without you, these rescues are not possible. Without you, we could not do what we do.

It is time for a change in the regulation of these facilities. It is time for more oversight. The dogs in the worst facilities need to get help now...not next year.

Learn how you can help at


RKD8925 said...

That is really sad to hear. It sounds like the USDA needs to start doing their job!

Megan Shady said...

I just added you. We adopted Jack (Brady) this time last year, and I was checking out the website and saw your blog. We try to keep up to date on him and our cat through here, our youtube ( and photos ( We are so glad you found rescued him because some days (when he's nice to the cat) we don't know what we would do without him!

ak12 said...

Yet another example of why regulations need to be stronger and actually regulated!! I think your blog is crucial, thank you!!