Near-Dead Stray Found on Dirt Road, Saved by Hero Woman

Last month a California woman, Regina McKerrihan, discovered a St. Bernard in desperate need of help. Lying on the side of a dusty dirt road, the dog had a gaping wound on her backside that was infested with maggots down to the bone. She was clearly in a lot of pain and required immediate attention.


After calling a number of shelters – each of them unwilling to help – it became clear that Regina would have to care for the dog on her own. The dog, now named Maggie, was in visible distress. She had sustained severe injuries on her back and looked to be inches from death. She was so weak that she couldn’t even stand up. This presented a serious obstacle to Maggie’s would-be rescuer, since she was not quite strong enough to hoist the large dog into her car all by herself.


Luckily, Regina was able to flag down a truck with two helpful men in it. The men moved her onto a blanket then gently slid her into the car. From there, Maggie’s hero drove her straight to the emergency room where she was tested for a wide swath of diseases.


Aside from the visibly disturbing wound on her rear leg, Maggie’s blood test came back positive for Pyometra, a number of parasites (likely from a diet of road kill), and a rare form of low grade uterine cancer. Because of the extensive level of care that Maggie required, Regina’s credit card was quickly maxed out. However, just because she had paid as much as she could, didn’t mean that the bills stopped accumulating.


After a few days, Maggie’s cost of care was up to $7,500 – too much for Regina to fund alone. But thanks to the internet, there are a number of wonderful crowd funding platforms that let people ask for donations. She quickly made a GoFundMe campaign to help cover the cost of Maggie’s hospital bills, which you can find here.

After just two weeks, Maggie’s bills are almost completely paid off, having raised over $6,500 with a goal of $7,500. That being said, there is still a good bit of donating that needs to happen.

On our end, we have already set up Maggie with a free lifetime of PetPlus. This way, no matter what obstacles may come down life’s road, Maggie will be covered.

So please, if you are feeling generous, go to Maggie’s GoFundMe page and make a donation.

And if you are interested in signing up for PetPlus, try this two week free trial and see the savings for yourself!



Dog Rescued After Being Frozen in Hot Tar

Earlier this summer, an amazing dog rescue took place in Udaipur, India after one unlucky dog fell into a pool of hot tar. The 5-month-old pup was quickly coated with the sticky stuff , making it impossible for the him to move.

Luckily, the dog caught the attention of passers by and before long people with Animal Aid Unlimited (an animal welfare group) were on the scene. And with leaves and twigs stuck all over the immobile mutt, it is a blessing that anyone spotted the camouflaged dog at all.

What the volunteers saw when they arrived on the scene they will not soon forget — a whimpering dog covered from head to tail in a rapidly hardening black ooze.

“There is no way he could have come out on his own, without any intervention,” said Claire Abrams of the AAU. “The Tar…became hard like a rock and he couldn’t move.”

To get a better idea of what this dog went through, see the CNN interview with Neha Singh Banyal from Animal Aid Unlimited.

The dedication from the people at AAU cannot be understated — spending upwards of 8 hours to just cleaning away the grime, and even more time with rehabilitation.

Now that all the tar is gone and his tail is wagging again, members of the shelter felt comfortable going public with the story. The dog is on track for a full recovery and is in higher spirits every day.

BBC – India dog stuck in tar pit rescued
CNN – Dog rescued after being stuck in hot tar


INCREDIBLE: Mother Cat Adopts Orphaned Baby Rabbit

It’s a Disney movie come to life. When a baby rabbit lost both of his parents, this amazing mother cat sensed that he was in need and adopted him into her litter.

One might assume that a cat, being a predator, would see a baby rabbit as an easy meal. That’s what makes this video so special. This cat’s maternal instinct overtook her predatory one, which is not something you see every day in the animal kingdom. See the magic for yourself.

Mother Cat and Baby Rabbit

Is that not a miraculous sight? This mother cat shirked every one of her hunter instincts and cared for this baby rabbit just like any of her own kittens.

And let’s not understate the bravery of that rabbit. Most rabbits would be freaking out — and rightly so! But this little fuzzball is cool as a cucumber.

Perhaps the rabbit thinks he’s a cat (won’t THAT be an identity crisis later on). But so long as he has his mother cat around protecting him and keeping his fur clean, this little rabbit is going to be well looked after.

PetPlus offers a budget-friendly way board your pets while you’re out of town. Find out if PetPlus is right for you, and get more information on the members-only benefits, which include discounts on food and vet visits, as well as boarding discounts.


Hi-Tech Gear to Help Search and Rescue Dogs Save Better


Search and rescue dogs are becoming an increasingly popular and effective resource in terms of locating survivors after a disaster. However, there are still a number of improvements that could be made. As such, researchers at North Carolina State University have been looking into ways to help them work more efficiently.

Ideally, the entire search and rescue process would be automated through drones and robots, thereby putting the fewest amount of lives at risk. However, because robotics has yet to match the cognition and sensory abilities of dogs, we still rely on our canine companions to help us sniff out lost hikers or people buried during a natural disaster.

RELATED STORY: Help Aide the Rescue Dog Heroes of the Oso Mudslide

But just because we must continue to send our furry friends into the fray, doesn’t mean we can’t make an effort to keep them safe. Giving a search-and-rescue dog the ability to monitor their vitals, collect footage of the rescue, communicate remotely with a handler, and take reading of the immediate area is going to change the way we use dogs during a rescue mission, making them incalculably more useful, and safer to boot.


Because of the various advantages and hang ups about using search and rescue dogs, the researchers are hard at work developing hi-tech harnesses and vests that could vastly improve a search and rescue dog’s efficacy. Add-ons like radios, microphones, cameras, environmental sensors, and heart-rate monitors are all being tacked on to vests and harnesses in hopes of making our rescue pups safer and more effective in the face of danger.


“We have developed techniques and technological platforms to improve the efficiency of search-and-rescue dog training and to augment the current capabilities of search-and-rescue dogs in the field,” said Alper Bozkurt and David Roberts, researchers at North Carolina State University.

When a rescue dog is sent out to scope out a possible gas leak, having a monitor on their harness that can signal when gas is detected or when the dog’s vitals begin to drop could save countless service dogs’ lives.

RELATED STORY: 3 Tips for Pet-Friendly Emergency Preparedness

With a camera and microphone on a rescue dog’s vest, we can now get a dog’s-eye view of a disaster area, as well as communicate with them remotely. This means that we will now be better able to detect when a dog enters a dangerous situation, and give us the ability to call them back from the safety of a remote location. Also, we will be able to give them commands from a safe distance, no longer requiring a handler on the scene.

What do you think about making rescue dogs more technologically advanced? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more. 


Help Aide the Rescue Dog Heroes of the Oso Mudslide

Last week, the nation reeled after hearing reports of the mammoth landslide in Oso, Washington that claimed dozens of lives. A wall of earth carrying uprooted trees and boulders downhill at breakneck speeds, what is now being called the Oso Mudslide quickly obliterated everything in its path.

With the death toll still rising, our hearts go out to the families effected, as well as those brave men, women, and dogs out searching for the lost. If you would like to donate, or to simply know whom to keep in your prayers, these are the search and rescue organizations out there getting their paws dirty in search of those still unaccounted for.

Northwest Disaster Search Dogs

One of the premier search dog organizations in the Pacific Northwest, the NDSD had 7 teams (dogs and handlers) on site searching for lost persons, leading the charge for the search dog teams.


Snohomish County K9 Airscent Team

Local K9 rescue outfit, the Snohomish County Airscent Team were among the first search and rescue teams on the scene.


King County Search Dogs

A search and rescue team from the surrounding area, the King County Search Dogs were quick to help out the cause.


German Shepherd Search Dogs (GSSD)

A search and rescue group that specializes in training German Shepherds, the GSSD sent a few teams to aide in the relief.


King County Explorer Search & Rescue

One of the largest search and rescue groups in the Northwest, KCESAR sent a number of teams to the location, both with and without search dogs.


Pacific Crest Search Dogs

After the full magnitude of this undertaking was completely understood, the PCSD sent a couple of dogs to help with the search for missing people, helping rebuff the second wave of searchers.


Evergreen Search Dogs

Another organization that had dogs on the scene, the Evergreen Search Dogs were quick to lend a paw to the rescue effort.


If you want to help those effected by the mudslide, all of the aforementioned organizations are accepting donations. Since the area has been barred off from the public for safety reasons, actual volunteer assistance is impossible. A charitable contribution, a donation of resources, or your thoughts and prayers are the best ways to help for those of us unable to physically lend a hand.

This video shows just how devastating the mudslide was to people and pets alike.


View more from Sam Bourne

PetPlus is pleased to help in a small way by offering each of these rescue dogs a free annual PetPlus membership plan. Please help us spread the word to support these brave men, women, and canines.