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Stu Journey- A Dog’s Tale

By: Faye Schultz
Founder of SPOT

Oceanside CA— Like so many others before him, Stu, a 55 lb black and white pointer mix, came into the shelter as a malnourished stray who was emaciated and barely surviving on his own. He likely had been on his own, injured and alone for quite a while. He was at least 20 pounds underweight.

If you look at your index and middle fingers, hold them together, that was the width of his back. Stu had hip dysplasia and was in an enormous amount of pain. The injury may be from being hit by a car.  The reason for his injury is uncertain. It appears to have been an older injury, as his back leg was atrophied, and his spine has curved due to overcompensation for his injured leg and hip. Needless to say, this poor boy was in pain and needed help. The shelter reached out to rescue groups, as they do not have space to rehab someone with such severe needs and without a rescue group, Stu would have faced euthanasia.

Saving Pets One at a Time(SPOT) stepped up to the opportunity to save another great life.  Our goal was to get this boy back up on all 4 of his beautiful legs and get them working again. This rescue was a big undertaking, and we would need a lot of help with his recovery. We contacted our animal friends at The Total Dog, Swim Gym & Rehab, www.mytotaldog.com. They were amazing! Not only did they make a custom plan to care for Stu, but they provided their services at no cost to our rescue. Partners like Total Dog, Swim Gym & Rehab make it possible for SPOT to take-on dogs like Stu! It is all about helping each other to help our 4-legged friends. Stu’s regime included underwater treadmill sessions, cold laser, massage and strategic exercises. They showed us varies techniques, movements, and routines for us to do in his foster home too.

We then sought out the help of Dr. Cheryl Ricketts-Mulvey of Olde Mission Chiropractic in San Marcos who, thank you, donated her services and expertise in getting Stu “adjusted” back into life by working on his crooked spine and his overstressed shoulders (from carrying the majority of his load for so long). So many great people came together to help Stu in his long road to recovery. As well, one of our volunteers, Moira, who is a Reiki practitioner donated her time to aid in Stu’s rehabilitation. We could not do this without all our fantastic partners and volunteers giving their time and services!


It has been a long tiring journey for our boy Stu (good thing he has a comfy chair to rest in). He worked like a champ! It took three long months but can now chase a ball and play without pain! We’ve watched him look and act like a ten-year-old dog upon rescue, heal and grow back into the happy two-year-old young and active boy he is.

Thanks to these beautiful people, and to Stu’s foster family for working with him (literally) every step of the way, our boy Stu is now feeling great and walking on all fours. SPOT would like to thank everyone for being an integral part of Stu’s Journey. No one can do it alone. He is feeling great, and now Stu is ready to look for his forever home.

About SPOT

In North County, San Diego, we’ve met a pack of folks who love dogs and cats. SPOT is dedicated to the idea that companion animals are among the noblest beings on earth and that they
deserve our stewardship. We are an all-volunteer group with 501c3 tax exempt status. See more at www.spotsavespets.org.