tiny tippy

Tiny Tippy arrived to Pawsitive Restorations on March 25, 2022. We were initially told by out of state rescuers that Tippy was 8-10 years old, 3.2 pounds and had lost some hair on her back due to flea allergies. We were not at all prepared for the HOT MESS actually came off of that transport van.

In her first 4 hours with us, Tippy racked up over $1500 in medical expenses, and our Director found herself sitting in two separate hospitals, worried sick and fighting for the life of a dog she’d only just met. But that’s what we do here. ♥

When she arrived to our Home Base, we saw a tiny little dog who had a body score of 9/9, (obese) on skinny little, “toothpicks” for legs that weren’t able to support her body weight! Tippy actually got her name because she would tip over when she walked!  She wasn’t, “missing some hair” from her back – she had suffered painful burns running the length of her torso. We observed what we assumed to be terribly luxated patellas in both hind legs, and what appeared to be a badly luxated elbow as well.  Tippy was sneezing constantly, blowing bubbles out of her nose, and turning purple because she couldn’t get the oxygen she needed. 

When Tippy arrived, our director did a very basic examination, scooped Tippy up and rushed her to the closest hospital.  The doctors determined that because of Tippy’s breathing issues, she needed to be transfered immediately to an emergency hospital for oxygen therapy. 

The ER vets ran all kinds of tests, including an echocardiogram to rule out congestive heart failure. Tippy’s lungs were clear, so we were able to rule out pneumonia as well. Doctors could not figure out why she was constantly sneezing, bubbling, and turning purple, so they sent her home with us for follow up with our regular vet.

I called Dr. Palmini at Sano Hospital on our way home from the ER that evening. He came down immediately  and evaluated Tippy at Home Base. Doc suspected that Tippy’s upper canine teeth had invaded her itty-bitty sinus cavity causing her repetative sneezing. He also diagnosed Tippy with a collapsing trachea, what he suspected were bilateral grade 4 luxated patellas, and that luxated elbow.  He then confirmed our suspicions that the hair loss on her back came from either chemical or thermal burns. Tippy would need x-rays and bloodwork to confirm his suspicions and he would then create a treatment plan. 

Until we could get tippy to the clinic, she would need oxygen therapy around the clock in our incubator/oxygen chamber.

Immediately after Dr. Palmini confirmed via x-ray that Tippy’s canine teeth had invaded her sinus cavity, he removed the teeth. Tippy stopped sneezing! Tippy could BREATHE! Tippy stopped turning purple! This, it would turn out – would only be the start of Tippy’s very long road to recovery. 

The x-rays of Tippy’s lower extremeties revealed a complete dumpster fire in her hind legs! They confirmed the grade 4 bilateral luxated patellas, (her knee caps weren’t even close to where they were supposed to be!) They also discovered a torn anterior cruciate ligament, previous breaks in BOTH LEGS that had never been treated, and both of her femurs were abnormally curved. ALL of which would require specialized repair by an Orthopedic Surgeon over multiple surgeries. 

Tippy was sent home to recover from her dental surgery, and had strict orders to LOSE SOME WEIGHT to prepare her for the leg repairs.

With multiple surgeries, and long recovery times in between each, the rescue made the decision that Tippy would remain in rescue care with us indefinitely.  We are in no hurry to move Tippy through, and there are no guarantees that the surgeries will be successful. Tippy is a very happy little girl, and she will always have a home here. She will have all the time she needs to recover whatever mobility we can get for her.

9/27/22 Right Leg Repairs

Tippy hangs with Dr. Palmini while awaiting surgery
Tippy is prepped and ready for surgery
The big OUCHIE
Baby girl recovering

Tippy had surgery for her right hind leg on 9/27/22. The orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Fick, told us this would be a very complicated surgery, especially on something the size of a chicken leg! The surgery was long, but Tippy pulled through. Then began the 6-8m week recovery time to see if the surgery was successful. 

on 11/15 we had our follow up visit with post-op rads. So far, the repair to the torn ACL is holding and her knee cap is right where the doctor put it! Tippy has gained quite a bit of mobility, and actually hops when she’s happy now! She hasn’t fallen over once since the procedure! 

 If you follow us on Facebook, you KNOW how much Tippy loves food. This little dog will climb mountains for a piece of kibble which makes keeping her on a strict diet very difficult! After her leg repair and new found right leg mobility, we caught her sneaking in to the puppy area and stealing their food! She catapulted back up to 4lbs 15oz! UGHHH! Once we figured out her stealthy new trick, she was back on lockdown and her diet was back in full swing! At her post-op check-up she weighed in at 4lbs 6oz, and was cleared to schedule the left leg surgery. That surgery will be on Dec. 20, 2022.


Tippy's Surgeries. Complete and still to go...


Tiny Tippy has tied up SEVERAL thousands of dollars in her broken little body. As of 11/16/22 her veterinary costs alone have just surpassed $4000, and we still have 3 surgeries to go! Those surgeries are estimated to cost at least another $3000. Tippy needs sponsors to help cover these needed surgeries to gain her mobility.  If you are able to make a one time, or recurring donation to the rescue, we could sure use the help!