Help Angelus – Urgent Fundraising Appeal

by SOS Algarve Animals on January 7, 2013

Update January 19, 2013

This Thursday, January 17, little Angelus (although he is growing fast) went on his way to Germany and he arrived last night into the loving hands of many people in Frankfurt waiting and ready to help him. He will be staying near one of the big Veterinary Hospitals, and they are ready, prepared and waiting to keep up his routine of acupuncture and physio therapy.

Before Angelus left he was treated by Vetalbu in Albufeira. And we cannot thank Dr. Nuno Onofre and Dr. Patricia Alegre enough for taking Angelus’s case and their generous help. We were amazed by the super care and treatment possibilities available at Vetalbu, Angelus had acupuncture, some of the best physiotherapy we have ever seen, NMES stimulation and even a treadmill. We also thank our wonderful foster family in Albufeira…for taking him in when they were already full and taking him to his many sessions.



Angelus, just finished his exercise on the treadmill

And last but by no means least, thank you to the many people who donated towards Angelus and made it possible to give him this super important chance. In total 650 euros was raised for Angelus, and we had only targeted 300 euros. We will be offering any extra moneys raised for Angelus to the organization in Germany to be spent on his care, and if they decline this offer then we will save the money until our next animal arrives in need of special emergency treatment. We do not yet have the exact cost figure but will soon.

Finally, the important part. Angelus did show improvement during this week of treatment. The diagnosis is that he has partial radial nerve damage. The nerve with the most damage is the nerve on the outside of his leg. He has good feeling in the major nerves in the middle and the left of the leg, but only a little feeling on the nerve on the right (or outside) of the leg.

The major damage is not to the sensitivity of the nerve, but to the motor neuron which is what is in use when the brain sends the signals about what to do to be able to take the next proper step. His brain now needs to be taught to tell his paw to work. By the time Angelus left us and after his last therapy session he was finally starting to correct the position of his paw (especially when given a little support), he was finally starting to take a little notice of his paw, and this means his brain was telling it what to do instead of it being ignored.


We do not know how much the nerve will improve, or how much the brain will be able to compensate. We know that his only chance is a very dedicated family who will continue his physiotherapy at home, and continued treatment by doctors for physio and acupuncture – all of which they are ready to provide in Germany.

Sound asleep in his acupuncture

We do think that thankfully there is enough movement that amputation should not be necessary (at least we truly hope so). Perhaps what will be necessary is a custom made support for the paw to keep it straight, but this is part of the reason why we made the decision that it was best for Angelus to go to Germany. Because they do have far more time and funds available to be able to give Angelus the continual care he will need.

Our final thanks go to Yvonne and all her team in Frankfurt, for offering to take on this wonderful little guy and give him the best chance possible.

And so …thank you to everyone who has helped Angelus, those who donated (without which none of this would have been possible), his foster family, the Vetalbu for the wonderful specialized treatment as well as our treating vet (Clinica Veterinaria Torrejao), and everyone in Germany….. this is truly one extremely special little guy.

Angelus has the most wonderful nature, he is always wagging his tail, he never gives up, he is a truly special puppy who will make a truly wonderful dog…thank you for giving him this chance for a happy ever after.

The Team at SOSAA.

For more photos of Angelus please click here.


Update January 10, 2013

So we have both good and bad news to share for our little Angelus. He went to see the specialists on Tuesday, January 8th. As we expected there is no fracture or dislocation, the diagnosis of nerve damage was confirmed. What is thought to have happened is that when he was thrown over the fence, in landing from such a height, his front leg spread open pulling the large centre of nerves located under the front arm pits. It is believed Angelus has a compressed partial evaltion of nerve.

The good news is that we think this is partial and not a complete rupture and that it may heal with proper treatment. The prognosis is 50/50, slightly better because he is a puppy. And as he uses this leg partly, and as he has some feeling, and so we hope amputation will not be necessary. So now it all depends on how Angelus responds to treatment, and if he does not respond then whether a support or type of doggie crutch will eventually need to be constructed for Angelus.

Angelus’s treatment … and this is where truly we cannot thank everyone enough for their kind donations towards helping. The specialist wanted to start the treatment of Angelus immediately, and the importance of starting as soon as possible and with as many sessions as possible cannot be stressed enough. And it is only because of the help received that we were able to do this for Angelus. 

Intense physiotherapy and back to back sessions of acupuncture is what has been advised. And so we have begun…Angelus has his first such session on Tuesday following the consultation and his second today. He will have the 5 such sessions by Wednesday the 16th when his situation will be reassessed and hopefully we will have good and optimistic news to share.


Even with kind rescue discounts from all the doctors now helping Angelus, his bill was just under 300 euros for 5 sessions of acupuncture, physio, supplements and the initial consultation. With possibly more to come and the cost of the x-rays, but we have also received two further kind and generous donations and have now raised for Angelus 450 euros, so we can give him the best possible start to his rehabilitation that we are able. 

He is a wonderful little puppy, truly special; everyone falls in love with him. It is heart-breaking that this happened to him, that not only was he abandoned but abandoned in such a way to cause irreversible damage on a little defenceless puppy. At the same time, Angelus is fortunate, one way or another he is going to live a long happy and beloved life, he looks just like a german shepherd, and he will be a family pet….he will never again be abused, and definitely never end up neglected or at the end of a chain.

Our greatest thanks to W, A&A M, DB, F&J H, PC and TLM for their generousity and making this possible.

For complete story of Angelus please read below.

Update January 8, 2013

From all of us but most especially Angelus, we would like to thank some very very special people who have answered this appeal and generously donated so that we have now raised the 300 euros needed for Angelus to have the tests and consultations required in the hopes of saving his leg. 

So to PW, A&A M, DB, F&J H we thank you but most importantly Angelus thanks you for answering this urgent appeal. 

Angelus will see the orthopaedic specialist as soon as possible. We are all praying that there will be a little good news or a little hope for this very special boy. We will update as soon as we have more information.

Posted January 7, 2013

Angelus was brought to us just the week before Christmas. And that was a terribly stressful week, with so many animals being dumped, so the last thing we needed was another puppy. But when you meet Angelus, you forget all of this. Scared, sore, injured…Angelus just looks at you with his beautiful eyes, wags his tail and your heart immediately melts. He truly is a very special, loving, sweet, happy little puppy. 

Sadly, unwanted, Angelus had been thrown over a high fence like a piece of rubbish. And when this happened we believe his leg possibly got caught in the fence and was badly injured. It was so painful and sore, and Angelus – just an 8 week old puppy – was on his own like this for 2 or 3 days before he came into our care. But despite everything that had happened to Angelus, he would wag his tail, try to run to you, drag his leg, yelp..and then sadly give up and lie there looking at you longingly. All Angelus wants is a cuddle and some love. 

We thought that something must be broken or his shoulder dislocated but nothing appears on the x-rays. We have taken him for a consultation, where the vet believes that there is either a trapped or ruprtured nerve. The vet has been caring for him, and he is getting daily massages and wearing a cast to provide some support, but three weeks later and his leg has gotten a little better, he is no longer in pain, but he is still not using it. He just throws it around like dead weight…. 

But Angelus may have a little bit of hope in the ending. One of the organizations we work with in Germany have offered to take Angelus, where he can stay with a very experienced foster family with lots of time to care for Angelus and massage his leg. They have physiotherapists, acupuncturists and water therapy which they will sponsor. And if the only possibility left is amputation…then they will also seek to find sponsorship to have the leg amputated when he is older (he must be about 6-8 months).

But first and before he can go to Germany we need to know what is the matter, and if anything can be done to save the leg. Tomorrow we will be taking him to an orthopaedic specialist, while we do not yet know the exact costs of the consultation and new x-rays, we expect about 100 euros. There may also be the need for another test using a cat scan and “tac” with dye, which gives us information about the nerves. This is a test which in Portugal will cost us about 200 euros (we will know exactly early next week) but in Germany will cost close to 1000 euros. And so we are trying urgently to raise the funds to pay for the test here in Portugal before Angelus travels so as we know if there is a way to save his leg and what we need to do. 

We are sorry we do not know exactly how much this will cost, as soon as we have these estimates we will share, we are currently trying to raise about 300 euros in the hopes that this will be enough. We know that sadly we cannot afford any of these tests without help and sponsors, so we appeal to you for help for our little angel Angelus. 

To donate please reference on any payment “Angelus”. Donations can be made by paypal, wire transfer or cheque. Please click this for information about how to donate.