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Dukey at Quinte Humane Society before the accident

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Dukey saying farewell to his friend, Jennifer Sporring-Nicholls of Quinte Lost Dog Network

Check out Dukey's Beach Metro News Debut on lucky page number 13!


November 25, 2015 update:

Amidst all our joy, we have suffered a great loss. Duke left us yesterday afternoon. Although he made it to our BASH on Sunday, the nasal tumour had spread that morning to his eye. By yesterday morning he was much worse.


 Our Miracle Beagle was and always will be one of the rescue stories I hold closest to my heart. Not so much for the severity of what he'd been through but how he overcame it, with such beagle-filled positivity. Duke refused to be defeated no matter how hopeless the situation appeared to be. He taught me so much in that long car ride from Belleville to Toronto.

Little Sir Duke was a valiant soul.

In Duke's honour, I will try to be as positive. Duke did not leave this world after being abandoned at a shelter by his owner although we could feel his heartbreak. Duke did not leave this world on an operating table after being viciously attacked by two dogs while at the shelter. Duke survived all those things and left this world knowing true, unconditional love thanks to his forever foster parents Karen and Bob. Wherever he is now, he carries it with him.

This picture here…this is how I will remember him. All smiles. All joy. Forever frozen in time.


Excerpt from April 1, 2014 eblast:


You Save Them Both…and then some




            As our friend Tina Lovelace would say, it was MISSION PAWSIBLE this past Saturday! First, there was Duke's pick-up...


Yours truly got up early and drove out to the Moira Veterinary Clinic in Belleville where Dukey had his life-saving surgery courtesy of Dr. Chris Tummon (aka Dr. Chris)! I expected a sad sack of a patient, licking his wounds and moaning with well-deserved self-pity. Not Duke. Without a mirror to prove him wrong, Duke seems to have no idea all he's been through. He's our Miracle Beagle with more cheeky optimism than Pollyanna! In the large back room of the vet office, there he was waiting to greet me as though he was the host of a lovely afternoon beagle-tail party. He may have looked terrible with stitches practically every place you looked, but that's only on the outside. On the inside, he's the happiest beagle on earth thanks to the sudden realization that he is LOVED and by so many people!


            First, I want to thank the good people of Quinte Humane Society who were all very devastated by the accident. I never got to meet the dogwalker who was taken by such horrific surprise by the attack, nor did I get to meet the woman who came out of nowhere and saved our Duke before it was too late. She suffered injury herself while doing it.


            Secondly, I want to thank Dr. Chris of the Moira Veterinary Clinic for his compassion, professionalism and, of course, his expertise. This is a fellow who took the time out to call me after the surgery to let me know the promising news that Duke may just survive this tragedy.


            Thirdly, my sincere thanks to Jennifer Sporring-Nicholls of the Quinte Lost Dog Network. She's the gal with the pretty smile pictured with Duke above. I didn't know about Jennifer and her Network until this happened. Jennifer runs regular fundraisers to help homeless animals in times like this. She raised a whopping $500 towards Duke's emergency surgery! We are so grateful for this help.


            In the month of March (excluding Duke's emergency), we incurred close to $6,000 in medical costs for our beagles. But there was absolutely no way we were going to turn our backs on Duke, no matter what the consequences to our funding.


            Duke's emergency surgery amounted to $1,095.69. We raised over $1,500 for Duke in a matter of 2 days. This is where my last expression of thanks comes in. I thank YOU. Not only were we able to cover his initial emergency bill, but we have remaining funds to continue his post-op supportive care at our vets at BEACHES ANIMAL HOSPITAL.


            Duke is doing great. His incision sites are cleaned every day and monitored by the BAH staff. We're hopeful that he'll be ready to go into an experienced, loving and attentive foster home within a week. We've not yet chosen that foster home so please feel free to submit an application for our consideration. And please don't be disappointed on the outcome. We are so happy to receive applications and, if not Duke, you might be best suited for another beagle in need. When we choose a match, it's not only in that beagle's best interest but it's also in yours. To the best of our ability, we want to ensure a happy and rewarding foster experience for both of you.


March 27, 2014 eblast:  

Look at the stars, Duke, see how they shine for you…


Good things happen to good dogs. We heard from Dr. Chris this morning. Dukey made it through the night! He's perky with only a slight fever. Dr. Chris is cautiously optimistic that he will make a full recovery. And we hope to bring him home to us on Saturday.


Dr. Chris also said that he cannot believe how many fans this sweet old dog has accumulated. How many hearts he has stolen. But I can believe it. Good things happen to good dogs like Dukey because of good people like you.


Together, we're strong.


On behalf of Duke, thank you beyond measure.



March 26, 2014 eblast:



Today has been an extremely emotional day here at Big On Beagles Rescue. Just a few hours ago, we received word from our friends at Quinte Humane Society. Duke was viciously attacked by two dogs new to the shelter that escaped their pen. Duke was on a walk with a volunteer when it happened. He was severely injured. We are all devastated - from the shelter volunteers, to the staff, to us. Duke's wounds were so severe that it did not look likely he would survive. But there is hope now. Duke was rushed to a local veterinary clinic that regularly works with the shelter and although the vet warned us all that the outcome may not be good, we all agreed we'd do whatever we could to save him. During those phone calls with the shelter manager and subsequently, with the kind veterinarian who performed the emergency surgery only an hour ago, we stood up for Duke and verbally assumed full custody no matter what the outcome.


The injuries were to his back end, and the bite wounds were quite deep, including a half centimeter tear in his rectum, but the vet (Dr. Chris) is hopeful the repair work on all the wounds will be enough to save our Dukey. He's now all sewn up, hooked up to IV fluids and antibiotics. The next 24 hours are critical. If after 24 hours, things are looking good and Duke is stable, we will be able to gather him up in 48 hours. We'll be able to bring him home to us and help him through his recovery - both physically and emotionally. We do not know yet who will be in a position to foster him.


As you may recall, I met Duke for the first time just this past weekend. It was on the Saturday. I took his pictures and a couple YouTube videos. I shared them with all of you. And I remember being so tempted to throw caution to the wind and take him home to Toronto with us the next day. But because I didn't have a foster home confirmed, I didn't do that. Oh, how I wish I had. This tragedy would never had happened.


Dr. Chris estimates the emergency surgery and supportive care will run us around $1,000. He's doing his best to keep the costs down as low as he can. He's very moved by the fact we've assumed full financial responsibility. Our friends at Quinte Humane Society will try to contribute to that cost as much as they can. It seems everyone who has met Dukey wants to help. How could they not, looking at that face?


We've leaned on you a lot lately. For those who have given so generously in this last while and for those who give to us regularly each month, I only wish to say Thank You. This is what your support does for these precious souls. But if this message reaches someone who has not yet made a donation, to someone who is as heartbroken by this tragedy as we are, please know how much your gift means to us and to Duke right now.


Together, we're strong.

March 24, 2014 eblast:



Is it a bird?

Is it a plane?

Is it a bat?


No, it's just Dukey…sky-diving for cookies!!!


When it rains beagles, it really pours!

          With Apple (aka Honey Boo Boo) just settling into her temporary post-op foster home with Board member Deanna, we're already back at the job rescuing more beagles in need!

          Meet Dukey. He's about to turn 12. We bet he never thought he'd celebrate his birthday back at the same rural shelter he was adopted from so many years ago. He sadly returned to the shelter about 3 weeks ago after being surrendered by his practically life-long owner, due to a job transfer.




This shelter isn't the prettiest place in the world, but the wonderful folks who work there make it beautiful…as do the discarded animals holding out hope for lasting homes. The staff at this shelter work very hard to save every animal that winds up there, one way or another. At 12 years old, they know the average family visiting the shelter to adopt a dog won't be interested in sweet Dukey. That's why they called us in the hopes we'd have the space to find Duke the home he deserves. We're gonna try.


          Although our foster homes are full, we know there are other beagle-loving friends out there who might like to join our merry crew of foster parents to give sweet beagles like Dukey a second chance at happiness. We've actually got a couple applicants waiting to be interviewed after Apple's arrival. It takes time to carefully review their applications and meet with potential foster families but that's a good thing! We want anyone who applies to feel truly appreciated by giving them our full attention and focus, explaining how things work before getting started. That way, we can better match the foster dog with the appropriate foster parent.


          So while you're pondering the wonderful world of Fostering for BOB, check out Dukey's videos! We apologize in advance for the "graphic" scenes depicting this lovely boy "answering the call of nature" during the making of this film. We don't do re-takes.




Dukey's Video Debut, Part I




Dukey's Video Debut, Part II






On behalf of our future Bird-Beagle and the next character that paws at our pant leg,


Thank You!