Fortuna/Burt - Sadie - Magnolia, TX
Sadie’s story is one of hope & a tribute to the love that Berners engender in us all. She came to us as a seizure from a breeding kennel where her value was measured by her ability to generate puppies and cash for the heartless individuals who didn’t deserve either.
We’ve fostered many Berners over the years and, honestly, Tina Marie & I were worried about Sadie. Neither of us had ever seen a dog so melancholy, so depressed. Sad Sadie. Oh, she was physically healthy enough, despite deplorable living conditions prior to the rescue, but she was heartbreakingly sad, emotionally. You could see it in her eyes. To her, life was not worth it. In fact, that’s how she finally got a name, thanks to Tina Marie’s brother, Arthur. Even he remarked on a visit, “She looks so sad. You should call her Sad Sadie.” It stuck.
But I took her name personally.The rescue, rehab & re-socialization mission that comes with being a BMD foster family is something I take seriously. It’s a labor of love, as they give so much in return for affection, direction & protection. With Sadie, patience was the most important factor. Give her space. Let her establish contact on her own terms, and let the healing power of the pack work its magic. (We have 5 other dogs that live a carefree existence on our fenced, 5 acre semi-wooded homestead.)
Slowly, very slowly, a bit of joy began to appear in those beautiful, dark, loving eyes. For the first time in her life, she had loving human interaction and room to run. She’d been kept with 20 other dogs in a 20 x 20 fenced enclosure, only allowed out for breeding and delivery, so, she literally had to learn how to run; how to be a Dog!
Needless to say, after a year of patient work and unending love and affection delivered on her terms, she’s learning to trust. She experiences joy every day, and because she does, she gives us joy as well, seeing how far our Sweet Sadie has come.
Of course, life has been a struggle for Sadie, and recent events made us ask ourselves, “Hasn’t she dealt with enough?”
About 2 and a half months ago we found a lump on her neck. Small, about the size of a nickle, but worrisome, given Berner history. We got her to the vet about a week later & in that short period it had grown to 4 inches across and weeping. He biopsied the growth and found mast cell cancer. He was honest about her chances, given its location and the aggressive nature of the cancer, but we opted to treat. Two days later he performed the surgery.
The good news, she’s recovered and doing fine! We treat her daily with curcumin and benadryl. (Research into curcumin’s powerful anti-cancer properties is now being established. Google “curcumin and cancer research” and you’ll see the good news coming out). We all know that each day with our Berners is a blessing. So far, Sweet Sadie (no longer sad) is in remission and running the property with her pack, and we couldn’t be happier!
Tina Marie Fortuna