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This is a dog who was returned to me by his owner due to the fact that they could no longer find the necessary time to care for him. She found him to be very "needy" and required much more of her attention than she was able to give.

The owner was looking to re-home him.

1-11-03 1-11-03
Fortunately, I remain the co-owner of all the dogs I sell as puppies. For the life of the dog I retain the rights to first refusal rather than allowing one of my dogs to be re-sold or re-homed without my knowledge.

This dog was sold as a puppy to an active Bullmastiff Breeder in Washington State. She was someone who was active in Breed Rescue and had personal commitment to the local Regional Breed Club. It was naturally assumed that this was a "responsible home" with breed knowledge and experience.

The dog was said to be in "excellent condition" and was dearly loved as a "soul mate". Living on the West Coast allowed only for internet communication and trust between owner and breeder "friends". I had not "seen" him since he was a young pup but could only assume our relationship was honest and that the dog was doing "as well as" the owner claimed. The owner proclaimed that her decision for re-homing him was only due to his need for more mental stimulus which she could not provide.

1-18-03 1-18-03
His condition was much less than *acceptable*. He hung his head low, his eyes and body were puffy and swollen. His skin and coat had suffered long-term infection and was beginning to scar from the chronic ulcers the infection had caused. His allergic response was not being properly treated and he had become over exposed to an environment that was exhausting his immune system.
1-20-03 1-23-03
He fortunately fell into the hands of an angel and friend who took him in temporarily and cared for him during the extreme winter weather the East Coast was experiencing at the time. He would have to wait for the weather to break before being transported by air from Washington to Connecticut, Coast to Coast, to return "home".

During this time, he was able to get immediate and necessary veterinary care and begin antibiotic therapy. He was diagnosed with a positive for staph as well as overly yeasty ears and a chronic intestinal upset. His body was swollen and itchy from the top of his head to the bottom of his feet. His calluses and skin lesions would be cared for daily with topical solutions and cleaned regularly in combination with antibiotics to start the healing process. He was thoroughly bathed, treated for flea infestation and his blankets were washed of the filth and grime.

The veterinarian treating Tygger agreed that he was not well enough physically to travel by air. It was hoped that his health would improve enough to handle a flight of this distance within the next few weeks.

 His condition gradually improved with TLC, special diet and clean environment and he was shipped home on the 21th of February, 2003. We are thrilled to have him "home" and will hold responsibility for his well-being "till death do us part".

What a gift to receive this dog into my care! Who dares not take care of a growing, living animal or at the very least ask for help when things go out of hand?!

This dogs' neglect is not only skin deep. It will take a very long time to recover from the mental scars, the lack of much needed emotional attention, as well as the physical, and more obvious external scars.


I share this story only to open the eyes of the potential puppy buyer and Bullmastiff owner to the nightmare that follows "lack of interest", "not enough time" or hesitation when seeking medical attention. It is very important to familiarize yourself with the problems: skin, orthopedic, temperament, etc. of the breed and to ask yourself what you are willing to accept "if" something were to happen.

Big dogs can and will have big problems if not attended to immediately. A simple staph infection or food allergy could become a financial burden if not treated properly.

Can you afford vet costs of dermatological visits or special dietary requirements? Would you be able to surgically fix a torn cruciate ligament or medicate a weak heart if something of this nature unfortunately were to happen? Are you willing to take advice from your breeder or discuss potential problems you may be having that could embarrass you as the dog's "caretaker"?

A responsible and knowledgeable breeder will be willing to give out suggestions or solutions to problems they may have experienced with other dogs of their breeding. They will also know that it is not the owners "fault" that genetics crept up in an unsuspecting situation and is causing an outbreak or breed concern. The only fault a breeder can hand out is to an owner who didn't seek help when when it is so readily available. There is no explanation for this type of neglect.

These are serious considerations when looking to purchase a baby Bullmastiff. Taking on the responsibility of owning a puppy is not only in training him to be a well mannered adult but also to protect him from ailments for the rest of his life. The Bullmastiff is a sensitive breed and requires a huge amount of love, time spent with his or her "family" and total dedication to training and proper health care.
The trust that a dog instills on you to care for and protect him is a trust that you as it's guardian and companion should never take advantage of.
  When viewing the photos of Tygger, you can notice that there is a before and after of his story. His 2008 photos are that of strength, care and love. His condition in 2003 was the direct result of neglect and has no explanation.
Tygger's Story has been here for more photos
DOB: August 16, 2000
Breeder: M. Hannigan and M. Perez
Owner/Companion: M. Hannigan

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