Foreign Object Found in Hope’s Intestines

With PermissionAn ultrasound of Hope the dog’s organs has revealed an unidentified foreign object in her intestines, Laura Burban, director of the Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter, said yesterday.

“Unfortunately Hope is not strong enough to undergo surgery at this point, but we also do not want to leave the foreign object in there since it can do quite a bit of damage.” So on Wednesday Hope will undergo an endoscopy, Burban said, “which may tell us what the foreign object is and we may have luck removing it that way.”

An endoscopy is a nonsurgical procedure used to examine an animal’s or a person’s digestive tract. Using an endoscope, a flexible tube with a light and camera attached to it, a vet can view pictures of a dog’s digestive tract on a color TV monitor.

“Unfortunately we have seen these cases where dogs will eat just about anything when they are starving,” Burban said.

Hope, a black pit bull-lab mix, is believed to be between 5 and 8 years old. She was found by a driver on Route 1 near Branhaven Plaza last week. The driver saw the dog walking and falling down. She stopped, put the dog in her car, and took her across town to the Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter at 749 E. Main St.

The dog, whom shelter staff later named Hope, was emaciated and near death and could not stand up or walk. She was about 30 pounds when found. She is receiving 24-hour veterinary care. Her temperature has now returned to normal. The next two weeks are crucial, Burban said.

Over last weekend she suffered a setback. Since then she has been diagnosed with liver and pancreas issues following blood work and X-rays that were taken Sunday. She had stopped eating or drinking, the staff at the shelter reported.

The ultrasound showed that Hope’s organs actually “look in pretty good condition. Her pancreas is slightly enflamed, but otherwise she looks good.” What is still unknown is the nature of the object found in Hope’s intestines, Burban said.

On Monday Burban reported that Hope was eating and drinking “small amounts at a time. She is walking and even wagging her tail today! We were very happy about that because she was not wagging at all on Saturday or Sunday.”

Burban said that because of the blizzard, the shelter does not intend to post an update on Hope’s condition today. But it will on Wednesday. “We will continue to update you as we know more,” Burban said.

“All of us at the shelter truly believe your prayers and good wishes are helping Hope. She is surrounded by love and she knows there are a lot of caring people out there. We are so appreciative again for everyone’s phone calls, emails, cards, donations and gifts for Hope.”

For those who would like to donate for Hope online you can do so via paypal at or you can mail them in to Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter, 749 E. Main St., Branford, CT. 06405.

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