Written by Ann Bell of Animal SOS-Burgas in Bulgaria
How Nika actually arrived outside the hotel here in Bulgaria is not that clear. One learns not to ask too many questions here. What was obvious was that Nika was in a bad way.
The man contacted the sanctuary and the manager Margo Peeva-Natsidu who met him at the veterinary office, where it was established that Nika weighed only 11 kgs. (24 pounds). She was anaemic and had very low body temperature, but fortunately, was not suffering from heartworm or any of the diseases or illnesses usually encountered in Bulgaria.
Nika was given emergency treatment and taken home to be nursed by Margo. Nika was fed with liquid through a pipette and tucked up with hot water bottles and warm blankets. Finally, she slept and slept and slept.
Given that she was found on December 6th, which is the public holiday of St. Niklaus in many European countries, she was named Nika.
The following morning, Nika was taken back to the vet and given infusions of medication and vitamins and then taken back to Margo’s where she spent the next 10 days gaining her strength to be moved to a foster home away from the sanctuary. Nika had to learn to chew and eat again. She couldn’t eat kibble or tinned food. But slowly, she did learn and her will to live increased.
English Setters are sensitive wee souls and it was considered she would stand a better chance of recovery away from the sanctuary, which is currently home to 150 dogs of varying shapes, sizes, temperaments and noise! Lots of noise!
In the two months Nika has been in the foster home, she has nearly doubled in weight and is now a happy, older lady (7-8 years old). She enjoys the company of the other English Setters, English Pointers, Husky and assorted mix breed dogs there and is thoroughly enjoying her life. Her foster carer says she is as sweet as a fairy.
She has been fortunate enough to have her very own “fairy godmother” who has ensured that she is fed on high quality food and gets a daily dose of vitamins, with a warm coat to protect her from the -14 degrees temperature and snow out there.
The veterinarian visits once a week, and two weeks ago, her blood indicated the beginnings of kidney trouble. So, she is now on a special renal diet to see whether this can be managed with diet alone.
Nika doesn’t know it yet, but if she is not offered a suitable adoption home, then she will go to live with one of our volunteers who has a particular love of English Setters. Whatever happens, she will never go hungry again and will have a happy life. Something we wish for all the dogs in our sanctuary.
Animal SOS-Burgas in Bulgaria (Facebook page) was built by a local Bulgarian businessman Alexander Stoyanov who has a passion for animals; is a legally registered private animal sanctuary and relies solely on donations to remain operational. It is currently home to 150 dogs and 6 cats. All rescued from the streets of Bulgaria where they don’t have an easy life.
This month Animal SOS-Burgas will receive a grant from the Harmony Fund as part of a special project to reach out to animal rescue teams in Bulgaria. Funds will be used for shelter repairs, kibble, veterinary treatments and fuel for four rescue groups in Bulgaria. To enjoy heartwarming photos of this mission to bring good things to the rescued animals of Bulgaria, click here.