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Hey guys, I haven't been around much lately cause it's been beautiful out and I've been spending all my time outside with Wembley.

I have an odd situation with a dog that does not belong to me, or anyone I really know. The dog belongs to a guy who doesn't really take care of him, doesn't consistently have food for him and when he runs out of food and money, the dog gets dropped at a friend or relative's place where he may or may not get fed. Eventually he gets passed around till he gets to my neighbour's place where he gets nursed back to health, but inevitably ends up in the hands of his owner again and it all happens again. I would like to be in a position to just take the dog and rehome him, but for various reasons, I can't do that. Because he always ends up getting cared for by relatives and friends who aren't willing to take him and rehome him or call AC, he's not so neglected that AC would do anything about it and the friends and relatives who like to bitch about how the dog isn't cared for would likely stand behind the owner if someone else called AC. It's weird and I don't get it, but that's the way it is....

So, right now, my neighbour has the dog for at least a week. I went over there and groomed him and pulled some ticks out of his ear, brought over some wet food I had here. He's normally fed kibbles and bits. He's underweight and a bit of an apathetic, picky eater so he's tough to fatten up. We were talking about trying to get some puppy food into him for the calorie concentration. Does that make sense or is there some reason we shouldn't do that? I'm also wondering if it would be a bad idea to try to work a higher quality of food in with his kibbles and bits, or switch him straight to something better while we have him, knowing he'll be switched right back to whatever's cheapest as soon as he goes back? From what I hear, he has a iron stomach and handles abrupt food changes well (because his owner switches him to whatever's cheapest and easiest to get at whatever time). If he has to go back to this guy, I'd like him to go back in the best health possible. What would you do?

We were thinking of picking up some Kirkland because it's cheap and good and we could afford to send a good month's worth or more back with him.

Now that he's been brushed out, nail-trimmed and de-ticked and we're working on getting him back up to normal pitbull weight, is there anything else you can think of that we should do for him while we have him? His teeth are clean, he seems to be in mostly good health. He has something that looks like either road rash or maybe a fungal infection on his muzzle right behind his nose, we're going to wait and see on that, but if it doesn't improve in a couple days, I'm taking him to the vet.

I want to pamper this dog silly while we have him because I can't do anything to improve his situation when he goes home. Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated.

This most recent time, he was dropped at a relative's place without food, when the guy was at work. No one told anyone he was being dropped off and the relative ended up getting arrested at work (due to a misunderstanding) and it was pure chance that someone went to his house and found the dog there. Who knows what would have happened if he hadn't been found that day since he was already half starved. The whole thing is messed up and pisses me off, but I just want to do what I can to help the dog while I can.
 

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Poor, poor pibble.

On the one hand, I feel like everyone is enabling this guy and hurting the dog in doing so. On the other hand, I raised my niece for 7 years so her mother could party, so I'm living in a big glass house over here.

Everything you're doing sounds wonderful. Just love on him. See if you can train him some simple things or train out any nipping. Encourage that famous pit bill love and joi de vrie. Play with him.

In case you're wondering, yes, i'm trying to make him adoptable. I'm hoping it can come to this. I'm hoping maybe the owner can be convinced to sign the dog over to a rescue, in which case I want this poor baby to be a perfect, wigglebutted, sitting on command bullybaby and have a good chance at a better life.

Oh, and give him a pat for me.
 

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Sounds like a really messed up situation. I'm a bit surprised that AC wouldn't consider just dropping a dog with no notice and no food to be abandonment...

But I assume you know the situation and the limits of what you (and the law) can do so,

Can you get him HW tested if that is an issue where you are? If he's HW negative, he could be started on an inexpensive dosage of ivermection and you'd just need to try to get to him once per month to keep on that....

Has he been de-wormed? Intestinal worms could really make it hard for him to keep weight on him.

If the dog's got an iron stomach, he should be fine with the addition of higher calorie food into his cheap kibble. You could also add some cheese and some vegetable oil (like cooking oil, olive oil and such-- not a lot, just a spoonful on a meal) for some healthy fats. Switching between cheap kibbles doesn't seem to bother dogs as much as switching between good/bad kibbles because all the cheap stuff is mostly corn and chicken fat anyway so the ingredients aren't much different.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
He doesn't nip, he let me trim his nails and pull ticks out of his ear, he plays well with kids and other dogs and shows absolutely no resource guarding behaviour whatsoever. He's already very adoptable. He's cuddly, licky, friendly and doesn't always sit, but doesn't flip out and jump all over you either. He's fabulous off-leash and LOVES car-rides. I honestly hope it can come to that too and I know that everyone is enabling him. I'm just not close enough to the situation to do more than help fix him up. My neighbour is....I'm not sure why she won't....but I also don't want to do anything to **** up my friendship with her because she's a really great neighbour and a good friend.

Funny thing is, I don't think it would ever have to come to a rescue. Everyone in town loves this dog...just not enough to take him and refuse to give him back. But if the guy was convinced to give his dog up permanently, people would be lining up to give him a home and pamper him silly.

I will give him that pat for you :D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Oh Shell, those are some good ideas. I think if I could spring for the cost of the HW test, I'd be pushing my luck to try to budget in the meds too. :( I already have to spring for the HW test and our summer's worth of HW meds this month for Wembley. Things were tight to begin with. I'm making an already stretched budget stretchier to buy food for him and the HW test would be $40 with an other something close to $30 or $40 for the meds. My neighbour spent her last few dollars picking up some kibbles and bits just to get some food into him ASAP. I need to think about this :p

I feel like if I take him in to the vet for one thing, I'm going to end up having to do everything else at once and we'll end up with no money for people food for the month.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
We should. We live in the middle of the prairie :p I wouldn't know what to buy or how much to give though. The ivermectin is the HW preventive right? Isn't it used to treat intestinal worms too? Is it a kill two birds with one stone kind of deal?

I think I'm might be going to a town with a TSC (http://www.tscstores.com) tomorrow.
 

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Oh God, that sounds so complicated :p But if I do the maths carefully myself just to be positive, I think I can handle it. Looks like I'd end up spending the same amount as I would on Wembley's meds, but have enough for both him and his buddy all year. :)

ETA Thank you for your help :)
 

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We used to feed my old dog hamburger and rice to keep weight on her (vet recommended), you can mix it into the kibble if you want, we would rinse all the fat off of it, but might want to leave some on if hes that underweight. Most dog foods have tons of grains in them and very low quality protein, if you make it yourself then you know what he's getting, and he'll probably feel pretty spoiled! No need to worry about nutrition if it's just short-term, and kibble can supplement whatever else he needs.
 
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