STRMN Shih Tzu Rescue of Minnesota
Rescue, Rehabilitate, Rehome
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Your donation will help
STRMN rescue a Shih Tzu
in need.  You may make a
tax deductable donation to
STRMN at P.O. Box 46562,
Eden Prairie, MN  55344

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Shih Tzu Rescue Of Minnesota
P.O. Box 46562
Eden Prairie, MN 55344
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our Available Dogs
Minnetonka Petco

First Saturday of every month
10:00 am to 1:00 pm


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"Happy Tails"
Successful Adoptions
The following are four stories, examples, of how Shih Tzu Rescue of Minnesota hears about and brings dogs into rescue.
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Ike was playing in the yard and accidentally ran into a stick or the branch of a bush, scratching his eye.  The eye became infected and was ready to rupture.  STRMN took him to a veterinary ophthalmologist, who did a skin graft onto the cornea of his eye.  Ike had to be kept quiet for several weeks.  His foster mom diligently put several medications into his eye every day, and eventually the eye healed.  He now has great vision in the injured eye and most importantly, his eye was saved. 
Mattie got his name from the condition he was in when he was rescued by STRMN.  His coat was so dirty and matted that his foster mom gave him the name Mattie.  He was found as a stray in rural Isanti.  He was probably abandoned, and based upon his very thin body and horrible coat, he was most likely on his own for quite a while.  During that time out in the elements, his eyes also became very scratched and irritated.  He required surgery to correct a cherry eye, and multiple trips to the ophthalmologist for treatment of his damaged eyes.  Today he is healthy and carefree in his new home.
Poor Chazz was trying to crawl out of a northern Minnesota roadside ditch when he was found by a good Samaritan, who stopped and picked him up.  He apparently had been abandoned and ultimately hit by a car.  He was obviously injured, especially his eye and one side of his head, and needed immediate veterinary care.  The concerned woman couldn’t afford to care for him herself, so she contacted STRMN.  We asked her to take him to the nearest vet, and said if he could be saved, we would pay for it.  If not, we would pay to have him humanely euthanized.  The vet generously donated some of his fees and even helped to transport Chazz to another vet that was closer to the Twin Cities, where he was met by a STRMN volunteer.  He continued to receive veterinary care in the Twin Cities and recovered under the watchful eye of his foster mom.  When he was brought in to rescue, he was originally named “Blackie” because he was all black.  After a good bath, we discovered he was black and white, and his foster mom renamed him Chazz.  Now he is happy and healthy and in his new adoptive home.
Bebe was a sweet seven year old girl who was surrendered to STRMN by her owner.   Bebe had a long history of blood in her urine and the owner knew she was in pain, but she couldn’t afford her veterinary care.  She also had severe periodontal disease and some abscessed teeth.  STRMN took care of Bebe’s bladder stones and treated her gum disease and bad teeth.  She is now pain free and living in a wonderful adoptive home. 
On July 24, 2013 two volunteers from Shih Tzu Rescue of Minnesota traveled to Fargo, North Dakota to bring 15 Shih Tzus/Shih Tzu mixes back into rescue. The dogs had been seized from a puppy mill near Fargo. A neighbor of the person who owned the puppy mill saw several neglected dogs in a wire pen outside the owner’s house and reported him to the authorities for suspected animal abuse. When the authorities investigated, they didn’t anticipate finding about 160 more dogs who were kept confined inside a searingly hot metal outbuilding. They were kept in small, stacked crates in a closed building with no ventilation or air conditioning. They were housed five dogs to a crate. The crates were so small that the dogs had to lie down on top of each other; there wasn’t enough room for them to even lie next to one another. They were found in six inches of feces, and all were malnourished, filthy, matted and terrified.

The dogs were immediately seized by animal control and taken to a local veterinarian, where they were shaved, examined, tested for heartworm and parasites, and given initial vaccinations.  All of the females were given an ultrasound to determine whether they were pregnant, and, of course, many were indeed pregnant.

Of the 174 dogs seized, 168 were considered viable for rehabilitation and adoption, but the veterinarian was in no position to house or care for 168 dogs! A Fargo dog rescue stepped in to organize care for the dogs and contacted many area rescues to seek help with fostering them. Shih Tzu Rescue of Minnesota was contacted, and we were excited and proud to be able to take 15, almost 10%, of the dogs that were rescued. Volunteers who normally weren’t foster parents offered to take a dog. Others helped with mentoring and taking the dogs to vet appointments.  Everyone rallied to help these wonderful dogs, who were so happy to be in loving, secure foster homes. 

When the dogs were in the mill, they were nothing more than a means to make money for the owner.  They were identified by a number, and had no names.   But as soon as the dogs were in the arms of their rescue foster parents, they were a dog with a name.   Being given a name was just the beginning of their new lives.  Following are the dogs who came from the mill:

F9   became Sophie
F19 became Cassie
F27 became Gabby
F33 became Chloe
F34 became Tacy
F45 became Cookie
F47 became Teenie
M1  became Toby
M20 became Stanley
M22 became Po
M29 became Henry
M36 became Charlie
M38 became Bentley
M41 became Arnold
M42 became Peeta

But our happy story took a twist!  When one of females was taken in to be spayed, the foster mom had expressed a concern that she thought her foster dog, Cookie, was pregnant.  To our surprise, and secret delight, she was indeed determined to be pregnant!  Cookie was then placed in a foster home that had had considerable experience in birthing and caring for pregnant dogs and their puppies. On August 28th Cookie gave birth to five beautiful puppies. We knew that Cookie had given birth many times before, but this time she was in the comfort of a loving, secure home instead of a brutal puppy mill. She is a serene, gentle, attentive mother, and very content with her babies.  Thankfully this will be the last time she will ever be forced to have puppies. Cookie’s five puppies will be placed in STRMN foster homes when they are old enough to be separated from their mother, and then put up for adoption.

Now back to the other 14 dogs!  All of the dogs received necessary vetting, which included a spay/neuter, vaccinations, dental cleanings, and various other medical services.  They all needed bathing and grooming, and some had some had suffered emotional trauma that required particular attention from their foster parents.  But whatever the dogs needed, they received.  The foster parents and other volunteers were very devoted to every dog, and all were brought back to good health and emotional wellness so that they could be adopted.   At this writing, three of the foster homes have "flunked" and adopted their foster dogs, which often happens.  Four others have been adopted and the remaining dogs have some very good adoption applications pending.  We know they all will find their forever loving homes soon.

We are so thrilled and honored to have participated in creating happy lives for the 15 puppy mill dogs rescued and for the five born in our rescue. The Fargo dogs are just wonderful and we wish we could keep them all, but that isn’t our mission.  We have a long list of dogs waiting to come in to rescue; so many that we sadly must frequently turn them away because we don’t have enough foster homes.  They consequently end up in shelters, given to a disreputable rescue group, or even worse, advertised on Craig’s List or as "free to good home", where they are often end up in the hands of someone who uses them for breeding or as bait for dog fighting.  We know by the behavior of some of the Fargo dogs that they were, at one time, someone’s family pet.  They were already house trained, they knew the excitement of riding in a car and the joy of playing with toys.  How could their previous owner let them end up in the hands of a puppy miller and living a life of hell?

We also ask how it is possible that puppy mills even exist. There are thousands of puppy mills, hundreds in Minnesota, yet they go undetected because they are physically secluded.  There is no official agency that regulates or inspects the owner’s business or the conditions in which the dogs are kept. The dogs suffer in long, painful silence while the puppy miller continues to breed them and sell the puppies to pet stores.  This miller in Fargo was known to sell puppies to pet stores nearby, yet the pet stores didn’t care enough to question their origin.  99% of all puppies sold in a pet store come directly from a puppy mill.  We can’t emphasize enough the importance of not buying a puppy from a pet store.  In fact, don’t buy anything from a store that sells puppies. You are directly supporting a store that perpetuates the business of puppy mills.  Until adequate state legislation is enacted which prohibits puppy mills, they will continue to proliferate.  Please encourage your state legislators to pass a law banning puppy mills and to craft laws that will ensure comprehensive inspections and restrictions on businesses that breed and sell puppies.
The Fargo Fifteen (ultimately 20)!
Mimi2.1 Mimi2.2
Here is Mimi in all her glory!   What a transformation from when she came into rescue, very overweight and having an unflattering haircut.   Carolyn and her daughter came to Shih Tzu Rescue of Minnesota’s meet and greet at PetCo two years ago.  She had lost her Shih Tzu, Mickey, just two weeks before.  She fell in love with a very overweight Mimi and adopted her.   Carolyn was diligent about feeding Mimi normal sized meals, very few treats, and they did lots of walking.   Mimi’s weight gradually reduced and her energy level increased.   As her hair lengthened all the beautiful colors in her coat became more apparent and her hair is now silky and shiny.   When she runs it flies out at her sides, her face expressing the joy she has with becoming a healthy nine year old.  She loves her life with Carolyn and is finally living the life that we all work at so hard to give to these precious little souls that we are privileged to have pass through our lives, for even a short time. 

If you would like to see Mimi’s entire album of 50 photos, go to Robert Lawton Photos, click on “Client Galleries”, click on “Mimi” and the password is “Carolyn” in all lower case letters.   You won’t be sorry if you take a peek at these.   Robert is very pleased with them also.
Mimi2.3 Mimi2.4
Mickey came into ShihTzu Rescue in April 2016, arriving from a Humane Society in Sioux City, Iowa.  Not much was known about his past history, but it was suspected he might have Cushings Disease, which is an adrenal gland disease.  He tested positive for the disease and was quickly put on a medication that helps control the symptoms and allows him to live a normal life.  Mickey also needed a doggy dental and had several teeth pulled.  But, after he healed, he was still able to chew his doggy bones, a favorite past time for sure.  Mickey is good with other dogs, children and adults.  He is mellow, not a lap dog, but an independent thinker. Loves belly rubs, rolling on his back and nice walks outside.  Mickey was with his foster parents for almost 9 months.  Then in Jan 2017, Mickey was adopted by a wonderful family in Stillwater who wanted a mellow, older dog to help their puppy mill ShihTzu acclimate to the family more completely.  They love Mickey, and he has been blessed with his new forever family.