Brando


 

In the last days of July 2015 we received a call for help from a dog trainer on the island of Rügen. She had taken an 8-year-old Rottweiler male in care who was urgently looking for a new home since his master had died.

 As it is, for his company and his house the heirs did not let themselves be asked for long, the admittedly somewhat grumpy Brando nobody wanted. The PS had several dogs and horses of their own and also torn a ligament, which made it very difficult for them to care for their own animals. That was the situation and yes, Monika wanted to help again. If he would get along with a widowed bitch from our stock he would have a chance.

The next Sunday morning Brando arrived at the "job interview" with the help of friends of his PS. It was soon clear that Brando had lived alone with his master and did not even think about giving up his single status. What to do? Brando was a handsome guy, who liked his PS, but it didn't fit in front and back. Before I could put in my veto, Moni came forward and decided that Brando could stay if his folks could find their way in, that he had to live in a 16m² horsebox for the time being. Now there was no turning back. Brando was sceptically reserved towards us in the first days. 

On the 5th day we wanted to get him out of his box before going to bed and couldn't believe our eyes. Brando's body was bloated like a barrel and he didn't want to walk. We had never experienced a stomach twist ourselves until then, but after all the descriptions we were sure that this must be one. So Brando was hoisted into the car and off to the clinic. About the drive over 35 KM country road we rather keep silent. Meanwhile Moni has announced us by telephone in the clinic and has taken care of the dogs at home. Brando and I were expected. He was x-rayed, degassed and a few minutes later he lay on the operating table.

At 3 o'clock in the night the call from the clinic came. Brando had survived everything, it was a 360° stomach turn and we had been fast enough. The next morning Moni drove to the clinic with a friend who had just come to visit in the morning. Brando had packed everything very well and if a new examination would make it appear harmless, he could go home. How nice. After a while the examination was running and Brando wasn't very cooperative and it turned out OK. Moni should go for a walk with Brando and come back to the clinic half an hour later to pick up his medication.

Not even 100m away from the clinic there was almost another catastrophe. From the garden of an apartment building there was a loud barking of dogs and shortly afterwards an American Bulldog suddenly shot through the ramshackle wire mesh, which was covered with reed mats, directly at Brando and attacked him. Moni defended Brando as best she could, he himself was hardly able to do so. Again we had a huge luck, Brando got away with some wounds and bruises. As a precaution the clinic immediately took him back and kept him there until the evening for observation.

The following 2 weeks his wound care gave us much variety. Brando did not even think about letting Monika or the doctor take care of his wound. Even with a muzzle, his gargling and raving was frightening. All in all the boy recovered very well and we could now get to know him better. Brando must have been often annoyed with food. Handing him a treat meant bloody fingers, so greedily he snapped at the treats.

The "serving method" by "airmail" was safer. One threw the treats in the air, Brando caught them in flight and let a bloodcurdling "clack" his teeth. Woe betide the part of his body that got in the way. It was also a longer learning process for him to bear that someone stayed in the room while he was eating, but we overcame this hurdle. Yes, my fingers and hands had just done it to him. So I let him eat an apple once and a piece fell on the floor unnoticed. Spontaneously I pointed my finger at it and within fractions of a second I was enriched by a very painful experience.

It must have been the fear for his prey, which was so deep inside of him that he never got away from it 100%, so you were never allowed to stop looking at his fingers. Otherwise Brando turned out to be more and more a quiet and cuddly bear. What he once had, he considered as his own and did not think about giving anything back. At some point he showed no appetite and had problems with the excrement. At the TiHo in Hannover they were astonished when they x-rayed his stomach and the x-ray showed a wood screw in his stomach and also something that could not be assigned.

Back home we fed Brando several times a day raw sauerkraut in the hope that the screw and the other material would be wrapped by the sauerkraut threads and then pass through the intestine without danger. After 3 days we drove to the x-ray control. Unfortunately we had not been successful. The or better the foreign body had to be taken out of his stomach by endoscope. After the operation had been successful, I was jokingly suggested to feed Brando better, it would probably be cheaper. The screw, an old sock and various pieces of broken glass had been removed from his stomach and had reached the limits of what was possible.

Brando packed this ordeal well, or so it seemed. About 3 weeks later we had been with him on our meadow and back in his room. As usual, I threw a treat in the air for him. Brando jumped up with his front paws to grab his treat out of the air as usual, which he did, and then gave a short painful sound. About 5 days later he had another stomach twist and again we were lucky enough to be fast enough. During the first stomach rotation the stomach was fixed to the abdominal wall as usual to prevent a new rotation. During the endoscopic procedure, when the sock etc. was taken out, this suture was most likely torn off and so the stomach was able to turn again. In the following period Brando often suffered from flatulence and other problems in the digestive tract.

An extensive examination revealed that he had changes in the spleen and liver, as well as suspected prostate cancer, colon cancer and stomach cancer. Masses of arthroses and spondyloses were already plaguing him. We have tried to relieve him of the pain as much as possible and to make his remaining time with us as pleasant as possible. Brando was really not easy to read, but he was a great guy who was, if you followed his "instruction manual", a cuddly, loyal and extremely calm male.