Is this your lost dog?UPDATE Monty has his forever home!!!

And, if he was gone for a long time, this could not arise during that time? I have known lots of loving owners with shih tzus who had eye problems.

"It’s not understood why some dogs get cherry eye, but it’s thought the cause could be from a parasite, some kind of bacterial infection, dermatitis, possible sun damage, cancer, fungal infection or it could be a result of a problem with the dog’s immune system. Whatever the case, cherry eye is hereditary, so it’s best not to breed a dog that has developed this condition."

So, yes, probably had it when lost, BUT, still wouldn't feel right calling them neglectful owners and saying they put the dog out on purpose until I knew the story. IF they do read this and you are wrong, that's hurtful. Again I say, you don't know the back story. Maybe we never will. Let's concentrate on what's best for the dog now, IMHO.

ETA: I would LOVE to take him, but Crazy Wendy the Cat would NOT love it. So sorry!

I am harsh and judgmental, especially when it comes to animal neglect.

Has the dog been fostered yet?

marylago said:

Totally reminded me of Keegan when I saw him... More of an Ewok than a muppet though, IMO...

"Muppet" is how Ms. Bikefixed refers to Keegan and to the two previous shih tzus she and Bikefixed had. But yes, shih tzus are totally Ewok material. Or rather, Ewoks are shih tzu material, since that is what the Ewoks were designed to resemble.

@mgould -- what a good thing you did for this pup! I met him yesterday at Puppy Love. He is a **sweetheart** -- but so achingly skinny. Needs to be neutered, too. Definitely neglected -- there's no excuse for the condition he was found in. [I'm with you on this, @calliope.] Wanted so much to take him home but we've already got two elderly rescues with lots of medical issues. I hope he finds his forever family soon, but for now he's landed on the right (temporary) lily pad with Lisa.

And, yes, Lisa at Puppy Love is an angel. she does so much rescue and pro bono work on behalf of sick and stray dogs -- really a very special person! Excellent groomer, and I love supporting a local business that does so much good for the community.

As Beppolina points out, he is living at Puppy Love for the time being. Lisa has a lead on a potential forever family for him, but doesn't know for certain yet.

He is scheduled for a neutering and eye surgery in mid December with a vet Lisa knows.

(In the meantime I'm working on Mrmgould to take him in permanently, but he thinks we have enough chaos with our old cranky dog in the house. )

I am sure a nice forever home will be found for him.

I'm going to call Lisa; there are a few people I know who adore the breed. They may be interested. I will ask them if BikeFixed is not adopting him. First dibs to you, Biker- man. cheese - and to mgould, of course!

Nah. Check in with @anotherkittie and @rags first... ;-)

Ms. bikefixed gets to choose the next dog and she gives me that look whenever I mention this dog and thread.

Critterlover thanks and please call Lisa. The first potential family didn't work out. A family from West Orange is contacting Lisa (they saw the post here on MOL). They would like to foster the little guy and possibly adopt him long term. They have to see how "lost dog" gets along with their current dog.

Mrmgould continues to groan and shake his head each time the dog is mentioned…so everyone keep looking for a home for him. (The dog, not MrMgould) thanks!

We are temporarily fostering our new found friend. Our Bichon and "Willie" don't have much interest in each other and that's probably a good thing. We'll see what happens tonight when they both want to sleep in the bed.

Ohhhhhhhh, ADORABLE! How did he check out at the vet?

He needs to be neutered and have the "cherry eyes' fixed, his eyes get medicine 3X per day. Other than missing his hair he seems to be shy but just fine.

Thanks @smoochie and Fabu for fostering him! The fact that they ignore each other IS a good thing. It would be wonderful if this were to work out! Good luck to an already lucky pup!

Many, many years ago, I had Lhasa Apsos (mother and son). Mom got cherry eye when she was about 2, which the doctors said was a problem with the second (or third?) eyelid and is extremely common with the breed. She had the surgery to remove the lid and was fine for 16 more years. So I sincerely doubt the cherry eye had anything to do with abuse.

Apparently it's fairly common with this breed.

OK--- I will spell it out---small dogs who are loved by their owners take them for regular vet care, and any vet would recommend removing the third eyelid. It is a fairly simple operation, not requiring a specialist, and is part of the ordinary expenditures associated with having a pet.

It is a hereditary condition, so, it is usually urged that dogs with cherry eye are not bred. If someone has a dog with a hereditary condition, responsibly, they should neuter their dogs to ensure, even if they don't plan on breeding, that the dogs won't be able to pass the condition on.

Lhasas, Shih tzus and other similar breeds require frequent grooming. Whether it is done at home, or by a professional groomer is discretionary, but it must be done regularly in order to keep the skin and coat healthy, to prevent fleas (which this little guy was infested with) and painful mats, which can cause sores, eventually leading to open wounds, a source of infection. In some cases I have seen, the mats have been so loaded with filth that dogs could not eliminate properly.

Toy breeds like these only become as disheveled and dirty as this little fellow was, after months, or YEARS of neglect. Toy breeds are not well-adapted to live on the streets, as are other larger breeds. These small dogs were bred to be pampered lap dogs, totally dependent on humans for daily care. And they panic easier than some other breeds so, in a highly populated area they run headlong into traffic and become a casualty of the road, long before they are found ,filthy, matted so badly that they must be shaved, and are covered with fleas in colder temperatures.

If you want to deny that this particular dog is the victim of abuse-- you call it what you will---create a dream-like scenario in which people are all kind, but sometimes unfortunate---and I will call it what I feel to be true, that this particular dog was a throw away, and a victim of extreme neglect, which in New Jersey, is a form of animal abuse.

Keegan is/was one such dog. By the way, Ms. bikefixed does admit that he is cute as hell but we're not open for adopting a brother for Keegan.

Keegan's story sounds very much like this dog's in that - we have pretty much NO INFORMATION AT ALL about what he went through before @chillout found him (and mgould found this dog and picked him up). What calliope says is true for the most part but I beg to differ. I don't feel that it was conclusively abuse that caused him to wind up like that.

Having had Shih Tzus and ST-mixes like Keegan since 1995 we know that their hair grows kinda fast. We groom Keegan about every 2 months and he can be quite the little scruff monster in those last couple of weeks before his next appointment. Keeping him all tidy and not matted takes a lot of work and God help you if the weather is yucky in that stretch of time. This kind of dog wet? That puts the descent into sloppy mess into warp speed. This kind of dog can go from shaved down to looking like that pic in way less time than a year. The hair on that dog's forehead doesn't look all that bad actually, just too long. Based on that single before pic and the after pics I would say that dog hadn't been groomed in 3-4 months tops.

Is that enough neglect to be abuse? Probably, but things are not always quite so black and white. The human(s) in charge of his care had circumstances we know nothing about. So go ahead and make all the assumptions you want but I'm here to tell you that I can see a dog winding up like that for lots of other things besides abuse. Depression or other illnesses cause things to fall by the wayside. Financial hardship could have totally changed this owner's situation. Maybe the owner died or had to be moved from their home to a nursing facility. Didn't we just go through a similar situation with a liver colored Cocker Spaniel here on MOL? Long saga that one. That dog was a big mess but was it abuse?

A couple of years ago @bquinn and I went to an old woman's home in Newark and brought a similar Spaniel (maybe a Clumber Spaniel, can't remember exactly) to Dr. Stack. It, too, had horrible skin, ear and eye problems that were going to take a long time to correct. She was basically fending for herself in a home with a woman no longer able to even walk her. Wandering around in a basement out of which we cleaned a HUGE amount of dog poop. Why? This woman's relatives didn't know what to do with the dog and they didn't want any responsibility for it from what we could tell. It didn't look like anyone involved had the wherewithall to handle this dog's necessary rehab. Does this sound like the dog you worked with, @jeanneh? Was that situation abuse?

@bikefixed, I appreciate your viewpoint,but you are splitting hairs.

Extreme neglect,in which a pet is found in deplorable condition, no matter the rationale behind the neglect, is, under the laws of New Jersey, animal cruelty. Animal abandonment is also considered animal cruelty. 'Patrick's Law', which was signed into effect by Gov. Christie this past summer, raised animal cruelty from disorderly persons offenses, to 3rd and 4th degree crimes. Arguments as to alleged extenuating circumstances should only be made in court. The condition of this dog,whether over the course of weeks, months, or years, speaks for itself.

To answer your question bikefixed:

I've seen dogs that have been neglected to the point I have considered it abuse. I even turned in an owner to the ASPCA because the neglect of her cocker spaniel was horrirfying. There was NO excuse for the infected rashes-turned black, and infected ears. Sadly, the ASPCA returned the dog to it's owner. ASPCA refused to discuss it with me.

RE; The little cocker spaniel Rescued: When I took Susu Quinn from Dr. Stack, she was a medical mess. BUT--her medical conditions were treatable but VERY expensive. ($120. +/MONTH) Her owner was an old woman who had gone to a nursing home. Clearly the woman was unable to give Susu proper care. The family brought Susu into Dr. Stack to have her euthanized. Dr. Stack called me and I took Susu into rescue. She recovered 100% with proper care, and was adopted by a family able to afford her medicines.

Was Susu's situation abuse? NO. Was it neglect? YES. BUT--I do not believe the old woman intended to neglect Susu. I can only assume the woman was unable to care for herself, let alone another living being. Did the old woman's family have any responsibility for the care of Susu? One would assume so. However, legally, they did not, but morally--yes they did (my opinion). Could I have turned them into the ASPCA--no.

In the case of this little found dog-It's the best thing that has happened to it. Lisa at Puppy Love is amazing, and the fabulouswalls family is fostering (THANK YOU)--providing proper care.

HIGH FIVE! This is what rescue is about.

I found a dog after Irene, and he was so skinny and looked so awful. but turned out when the owners found him, he had only been missing like a week, and got that bad looking in a very short period of time.

Intent is not an element of neglect.

Neglect or not this dog is a dream! went into his bed (from Lisa's Puppy Love) that we had put into our dogs old kennel as we had no idea what to expect last night. Well he stayed in there and slept all night not a peep. This AM when Fab went to let him out to go for a walk, he stayed in bed until Fab brought the leash...then he got the idea! This dog was once cared for by someone. He is an easy going, tail waggin' mush, who loves to pose and look adorable.He gets the idea about proper behavior and has not had any accidents or any marking on purposes. Mr. Mgould will adore him!!

Sounds exactly like Keegan's post-street rescue story. @jeanneh - yes, Susu Quinn is the same dog.

I'm splitting nothing here. We don't have the details about how the dog at chez fab/smooch wound up the way he did. He could have ready for grooming and run away for some reason. Like c_q said, it doesn't take long for a dog to become a mess outdoors.

Abuse and neglect activities (or lack of) that you observe are one thing - judge away if you must. Is there conclusive proof from the vet that this dog was abused? When you don't have the story, why waste your energy throwing stones and lecturing the unknown?

I was also thinking about Keegan's demeanor within hours of his first being in our home. Except for his already established routine it was like he'd lived with us for years. If he ever got lost somehow and couldn't find us or vice versa he'd bond with virtually anyone immediately.

I must say, I'm with bike fixed. I prefer to focus on the good and positive that this boy was found and is being well cared for by wonderful people than on the negative of how awful his previous owner may have been.

I have two fuzzy toy dogs who frankly look pretty awful right now. They were just thoroughly brushed and bathed a week ago, but illness and and then Thanksgiving hit and I was never able to get them trimmed. Kirby loves to be out in any kind of weather and especially loves digging in the dirt. He is also a picky eater with a fast metabolism, so he is skinnier than I might like. Oscar has had some allergy/hot spot chewing going on. I am treating it, but the chewing quickly worsens matts. Could I care for them better than I am? Yes! Are they neglected? No. They are loved and spoiled. It would take less than a week "on the streets" for them to look as bad as this little guy (minus the cherry eye)

Anyway, my thanks to everyone who has shown such kindness to this little guy. May he find his forever home soon.

@smoochie, do you think he needs a play date or is he already pretty contented? One thing I will say about this dog you have is to watch for how he behaves post-neutering. We expected Keegan to stop a few male-associated behaviors but were wrong. Nothing worrisome but he's definitely still a guy.

so far no leg humping, and he is beyond content but we'll let you know about a playdate!
I have scoured craigslist to see if anyone might be looking for him but... no luck

"male-associated behaviors"

Now, THERE's a euphemism. oh oh

It just occurred to me, by the way, that you might cast a wider net to find an adoptive home for this little guy if you change the thread title to something along the lines of: "Sweet Shih Tzu Seeks New Home, Loving Parents"

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