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Blind Dog Needs TLC

Wheaton Terrier who was struck by car as a young puppy is now ready for his loving home

Last December, a Good Samaritan arrived at North Shore Animal League America with a puppy who was gravely injured.

Our rescue team immediately took the precious pup, a Wheaton Terrier who appeared to be about six weeks old, into our Medical Center for an emergency evaluation. The puppy had suffered a severe trauma, most likely from being struck by a car. His left eye was dangling from its socket, and his right eye was also seriously damaged.

Sadly, the puppy’s eyes could not be saved. The left eye was removed, and the right eye, though still intact, was completely non-functional.

The puppy remained in our Medical Center for several weeks as he recovered, and every member of our veterinary staff fell in love with this adorable little dog, whom they named Falafel. “He was the cutest little fuzz ball,” says Christyne, one of our veterinary technicians. She nicknamed him “Fluffy Waffles.”

Christyne offered to foster Falafel in her home as he continued his recovery, and he spent several months with her. “He’s a very smart dog, but he is completely blind, so he will require a lot of training to grow accustomed to his new surroundings,” says Christyne. “He learned to get around my house very quickly, and he is like any other puppy in so many ways. But he is a special-needs dog, and he needs a patient, loving person who will accept Falafel’s limitations and want to work with him to give him the confidence he needs to have the best life possible.”

In August, Falafel went to a new foster home, working with one of our longtime volunteers, Marilyn. Falafel felt at home very quickly—so much so, says Marilyn, that sometimes they forgot he was blind!

“He quickly mapped out our first floor and enclosed yard,” she says. “He actually runs into the kitchen when it’s time to eat! Although we do make concessions because of his blindness, we try to treat him as a sighted dog as much as possible. It is difficult not to baby him; he can sit in your lap for hours. He loves human contact as well as being with dogs.”

Falafel, who is now almost a year old, is ready to find the loving adopter who will take him home and give him a wonderful life.

The adopter does not need to have experience with blind dogs, but should be someone who is very patient. Falafel, who weighs less than 25 pounds, is not yet fully housebroken. He will go to the bathroom outside, but still has accidents. He is slowly learning to walk on a leash, but his adopter must have a home with an enclosed backyard.

Falafel still suffers from occasional seizures due to his head trauma, but they typically last less than 60 seconds. He will need to be on medication for his lifetime. Animal League America will cover any treatment that Falafel needs in the future that is related to his existing conditions (this doesn’t include regular preventative medications, wellness treatments or food).

Falafel is very happy being in a crate, and he has learned some basic commands, such as “down.” He loves to play with other dogs, and it is highly desirable that his adopter have another dog or dogs, so they can keep him company and serve as seeing eye dogs. He’s also fine with cats.

This very special dog needs someone with a big heart and lots of patience to care for him and give him the tender, loving care he deserves. Marilyn is eager to share all she’s learned about caring for Falafel. If you’d like to meet this sweet pup and find out if you are his perfect match, please contact Alex Bab at AlexanderB@AnimalLeague.org, (516) 883-7900, ext. 352.

Thank you!