“It takes a village to raise a child” is an African proverb meaning an entire community of people must interact with children for those children to experience and grow in a safe and healthy environment. This proverb can relate not only to our human children, but to our animal children as well. This is Chance’s story.
In August 2019, an animal rescuer reached out to a fellow rescuer at Authority Rescue Team in Yucca Valley, California regarding Chance, a 6-year-old, female Pit Bull Terrier Mix, who was suffering terribly. Chance’s ears looked horribly infected as she had visible drainage oozing from both ear canals. This bilateral ear inflammation caused her ears to appear swollen shut. Chance left the shelter, in the care of Authority Rescue Team, with prescribed antibiotics and pain medication until a specialist could evaluate her. Chance was described as “truly a darling girl with such a sweet demeanor considering how much pain she must be in. She is a gentle sweet soul and hearing her snoring the first night is when she knew she is safe.”
Chance was examined at Mid Valley Veterinary Hospital and it was determined she was at end-stage ear disease and systemic and topical medications would not resolve this disease. The best course of treatment would be a bilateral Total Ear Canal Ablation (TECA) where the ear canal is dissected and removed. The middle ear is then opened to allow the surgeon to remove any debris from the middle ear. A culture is often needed. Sterile saline is used to flush the middle and outer ear. A drain may be indicated to provide drainage after the procedure and the incision is closed leaving no opening to the ear. Hearing is usually damaged from the chronic canal and middle ear disease therefore following TECA surgery most dogs have a significant hearing loss or are deaf.
Given the cost of this surgery, Authority Rescue Team applied and was granted an Ian Somerhalder Foundation (ISF) Emergency Medical Care Grant to assist with Chance’s medical bills.
The bilateral Total Ear Canal Ablation was scheduled and performed in October 2019. Following surgery Chance was prescribed pain medication and antibiotics. Her exercise was limited, she was only allowed to walk for potty breaks. Unfortunately Chance was unable to be discharged following the typical surgical stay as bleeding and healing complications arose. To make matters worse, the clinic was not in close proximity to the rescue founder who was going to be caring for Chance, making it difficult to visit her while recuperating. Thankfully the clinic team was there for Chance during her unexpected extended stay, caring for her both physically and emotionally.
After weeks convalescing at the clinic, Chance was discharged into the care of the rescue founder who works with dogs with hearing loss. She shared this with ISF, “She is a wonderful dog and now deaf, we found out that she was small dog assertive. We have to get her trained correctly so she doesn’t have issues once adopted. She will be put up for adoption when we are comfortable with her and know she is ready. She deserves a great life and we couldn’t have done without your support. Thank you”. Thanks to all of the people in Chance’s village who worked together to provide her the best care, her name now truly represents her second chance to live a happy, healthier life.
Written by Theresa Blangiforti
Edited by Bob Stone
The Ian Somerhalder Foundation depends on your support to provide programs like our Medical Emergency Care Grant for animals. Please consider donating today.