Kevin says... I Celebrate Bella Bright Eyes – An Amazing Pomeranian

Our co-director, Kevin Becka, is a recording engineer, educator, musician, and journalist. Get to know Kevin by visiting our team page.

My wife Helen and I are active in dog rescue, specifically with Agape Animal Rescue here in Nashville. We have a thing for Black Pomeranians and have had more than a few over the years. Currently, in our home, there’s one pom, Bella Bright Eyes, who holds a special place in our hearts because she’s the queen of recovery from catastrophic life events.

 
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We first met Bella in 2011 at a city animal shelter in Mesa, Arizona, and we fell in love. It was a kill shelter, so it was important we get her out of there fast; she was not in great shape. She’d lost a lot of weight, and her hair was falling out in chunks. To qualify, we had to put her through the spaying process; we picked her up two days later. As you can see, she looked awful.

 
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Over time, after lots of love and great food, she fully recovered, and became a big part of the family.

A few years later, Bella developed a fibrocartilaginous embolism (FCE), a blockage in a blood vessel in the spinal cord that results in paralysis. In Bella’s case, her rear legs were lifeless. After a trip to the emergency vet, we learned that many dogs recover completely but there is no guarantee. In Bella’s case, it took about 30 days of home therapy to get her back on track. We were amazed at how resilient she was.

Fast forward a couple of years...Bella developed an inoperable tumor on her right rear leg that resulted in a dislocated hip that couldn’t be fixed. We consulted our new friends at the emergency vet; they said they could amputate the leg and part of her hip. There were dangers of complications (incontinence, infection) and not getting the entire tumor, but it was her only chance of survival. After what she’d already been through and knowing what a fighter she was, we were in!

After the surgery (she ACED it!), Bella needed strict cage rest, and then she had to get used to being a tri-pawed.

 
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However, it didn’t take long for her to want out and start walking around; she was getting stir crazy. One solution was to take her to pet-friendly PetCo and push her around the store in a shopping cart we dressed up with a blanket.

 
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 She loved barking at the hamsters in their enclosure and meeting people who loved her stories of recovery.

Bella is feisty, the boss of the house, and motors around like a three-legged pro. There’s not a day that goes by where we don’t find inspiration in her spirit and attitude of “what missing leg?”

Bella is my animal hero. 

 
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Sarah Jones