Thursday, August 19, 2010
Tiny Yorkies With Big Hearts
A DOG CAN BE TOO LITTLE -
What he lacks in size, a 14-OUNCE Yorkshire terrier named Little Dude more than compensates in his ability to touch the hearts of those who come in contact with him.
For this reason his owner, Dan Armstrong, a groomer at Village Veterinarian in Lady Lake (Florida) , is working with one of the practice’s veterinarians to use the tiny pup to provide comfort to wounded veterans.
Armstrong, who lives in Rutland, said Little Dude was born May 5, 2009, and weighed a mere 1.5 ounces at birth. “He almost fit into a tablespoon,” Armstrong said.
Little Dude also faced a serious medical problem early on — he was born without an elbow joint on his right front leg. Despite his veterinarian’s reservations about operating on such a small puppy, she was able to fuse his bones together. He still can’t walk on his front legs.
Over the past year Armstrong has worked to prepare Little Dude to go and meet with veterans. Armstrong has teamed up with Rick Munsell, a veterinarian at Village Veterinarian, to bring that idea to fruition.
“He visits veterans, right now, in their homes,” Armstrong said of Little Dude. “We’re hoping to get him to a veteran’s hospital either in Tampa or Gainesville, so he can visit veterans there.”
Read more about their program at DAILY SUN.
This breeder in Florida showed this tiny dog in 2003. Tiny Pinocchio, a steel blue and tan 1-year-old Yorkshire terrier, tips the scales, if you could call it that, at an even 1 pound. He is 8 inches long, stands 4.5 inches tall at his shoulder, and fits comfortably in a baseball cap.
Dr. Michael Rumore, a veterinarian at Lake Seminole Animal Hospital, where Noki (Tiny Pinocchio's nickname) gets his regular checkups. "I honestly think it is the smallest dog in the world. He's highly abnormal, even for a toy breed."
There are several possible causes, Rumore explained, including hormonal deficiencies or some unknown form of canine dwarfism. "He just stopped growing at eight weeks," Rumore said, "although he has matured and he's healthy.