How did your organization get started?
After 4.5 years of devoted volunteer service to Great Danes, I decided I had a greater mission. After discovering a huge need of rescue assistance for all giant breeds, I left Rocky Mountain Great Dane Rescue, Inc. in order to start another non-profit, 501c3 volunteer organization: Big Dogs Huge Paws, Inc. The organization was founded on a core philosophy that every “big” dog deserves a chance!
What is your mission?
Big Dogs – Huge Paws Rescue is a 501c3, non-profit organization comprised of volunteers dedicated to rescuing, rehoming, and rehabilitating unwanted giant breed dogs that have been mistreated, neglected, abused and/or abandoned. We believe giant breeds to be loyal and loving, yet very expensive and sometimes overwhelming due to their massive size and need for constant human attention.
Many families do not do proper research and the result is an alarming number of giant breed dogs in need of assistance. Our purpose is to provide a loving foster home and quality food, medical attention, and behavioral training while they are in our care in order to properly evaluate and attend to each dog’s special needs. Our ultimate goal is to place each foster dog in a forever home with a family who has demonstrated their ability to provide the necessary love, attention, and care that every gentle giant deserves. We strive to educate owners and potential owners about each unique giant breed’s lifestyle, temperament, nutrition, health, and behavioral needs in order to support the breeds and find the perfect match for each rescue dog in our program.
How do most of your animals find their way to you?
-Having a baby
-Lack of training
-Lack of space/out of time at shelters
What happens to the animals once they are in your care?
All dogs in our program are housed in foster homes where they receive only the best of care, food, and training. We determine which foster home is most appropriate based on what we know about the existing pets, family members, and any special needs. All of our foster families undergo rigorous screening and training in order to be a part of our foster team.
All dogs are thoroughly evaluated medically and behaviorally while in our care. They will be microchipped, spayed/neutered, gastropexied (when possible), vaccinated for Rabies, Distemper/Parvo, and Bordetella, heartworm tested, and we treat any pre-existing medical conditions that they may come in with. All of our foster families also work with them on basic obedience as well as any advanced behavioral issues they may suffer from. Our goal is to rehabilitate them so that they will ultimately be successful when they are adopted and our success rate is extremely high. Big Dogs Huge Paws will keep our foster dogs within the program for as long as it takes to work with them and find them the perfect forever home once they are ready to be placed.
Tell us about a particularly compelling animal or inspiring rescue.
Deuce, lovingly known as Moose, is a very handsome, two-year-old, fawn Great Dane who was dumped at a shelter by his owner who requested that he be euthanized. He had something wrong with his legs and he didn’t want him anymore. After arriving into rescue, he was diagnosed with severe Wobbler’s, and was seen by Dr. Lane, a neurologist. Moose’s examination confirmed the diagnosis, and he underwent an MRI which showed a single compressive lesion, making him a surgical candidate. His surgery was scheduled for September 29, but, unfortunately, we hit a bit of a glitch when he bloated and torsed. He underwent emergency surgery and returned to his foster home for recovery.
Needless to say, Moose needed some time to recover from this event before undergoing surgery for his neck issues. I am happy to report that he underwent surgery with Dr. Lane on October 13, and everything went very well. This poor little boy has had more than his share of pain and trouble, but he remains a sweet-natured, gentle soul. Now, thanks to BDHPI, Moose can look forward to a pain free, happy life ahead of him and will go to a forever family who will love and adore him the way he deserves!
Interested in helping? To “virtually foster” him on Save a Dog or to get information about adopting Deuce, click here.