23 July, 2015
As most of us know, life can take many twists and turns, taking us on paths we could never have predicted. Roxy's path took a turn I am sure she had not expected when one day she found herself alone and on the doorstep of a Colorado animal shelter with a note around her neck saying "Hi my name is Roxy and I am 5 years old". Gone was the family she knew and all that she saw ahead of her were strangers in a strange place. That is until Debbie Stecklein entered her life and changed it forever.
At the time Debbie was mom to a young pug named Bart (3 yrs) who needed a companion. Fortunately for Roxy, the animal shelter where she was abandoned transferred her to Colorado Pug Rescue who posted her profile onto their website which is where Debbie found her. Since very little was known about Roxy, her profile was quite minimal, but when Debbie read that she was left at the shelter with nothing but a note containing only her name and age, she knew Roxy belonged with them.
Roxy like many pugs suffered from dry eye and would require drops on a daily basis, but this did not phase Debbie since Bart also had this condition. She also knew that having eye problems would make it less likely that Roxy would be adopted, so she made what Debbie describes as an easy decision, to rescue Roxy and bring her and Bart together.
“Right from the start Roxy was meant to be part of our family. Bart needed her and she needed us.”
Well Roxy fit right into the Stecklein family as if she had been with them from the beginning. Not only did she embrace and reciprocate all the love she was shown from both Bart and Debbie, but she quickly learned how to get what she wants by turning on her bossy side when needed. Roxy loves to be held like a baby, needs to be on everything and quickly turned meal times into a very noisy affair making for a household filled with fun, laughter and happiness. Exactly the excitement they knew Roxy would bring into their family.
After about a year and a half together, Roxy and Bart soon had a sister named Chevelle join their family along with her human dad, Jerry. Chevelle is a Miniature Pinscher who is the same age as Bart. While Bart and Roxy mainly have eyes for each other, Chevelle has become a full-fledged member of the family and Jerry is loved by all.
Roxy is now 10 (Bart 7yrs) and has been facing some medical challenges. The dry eye condition has caused pigmentation that over time has become so thick that Roxy is now unable to see. But thankfully Roxy is not alone and from one negative comes a positive; with her vision being so impaired her bond with Bart has grown even stronger - they are best friends. In fact if Debbie and Jerry need to leave them alone Bart steps up and looks after Roxy. He wears bells so Roxy always knows where Bart is and he makes sure she stays safe.
Roxy has also developed arthritis which has impacted her mobility and more recently has been diagnosed with an elongated pallet requiring surgery and a collapsed trachea that makes breathing very difficult. This combination of medical issues was making life difficult for Roxy so Debbie began looking for something to help them continue to stay active, but at the same time not overexerting Roxy.Debbie also needs to be with Roxy as much as possible due to the amount of medication she is taking. This is when Debbie learned about the Dogger stroller from a Facebook friend and Dog Quality customer who was using the Dogger to help her own senior pug.
"Best thing we ever did for Roxy is buy her a Dogger. I also have arthritis and it helps me tremendously when walking."
The Dogger allows Roxy to participate in everything they do. When they go camping and fishing Roxy lays on a cooling pad in her Dogger. She doesn't have to miss out on walks which she loves to go on and it allows her to always stay close to her mom. They even use the Dogger when entertaining and having barbeques to give Roxy a way to be involved, but at the same time keeping her safe.
Debbie and her four-legged family are inseparable and thanks to the love and commitment she has shown, Roxy has been able to live life to its fullest, enjoying adventure, happiness and companionship. There is no shortage of antics at the Stecklein home as the Roxy and Bart show never ceases to entertain. Their love for each other is clear and their bond grows stronger and stronger. But above all, Roxy is Debbie's little girl and they adore each other.
While things certainly didn't start the way she had hoped, Roxy's story shows how life's turns can mean that you end up where you were always meant to be. And as she faces her medical challenges she can rest assured in knowing that her mom, her sister and most of all Bart, will never leave her side, never stop loving her and will never give up.
"I love my babies with all my heart and soul and I would do anything to save them no matter what."