The story of Mimi
DogTraining4Humans was established in January 2015, in honour of a brave little dog named Mimi.
Mimi, a Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen, was born dead. Only a quick adrenalin shot could revive her. She was only half of the weight she was supposed to be, and she was born with a heart murmur. She also had an overbite, and given all her “defects”, she was considered unfit for breeding.
Nevertheless, she was a charming little pooch, full of beans, and a zest for life.
When our Founder adopted her, little did he know how this petit puppy would soon turn his life upside down.
Mimi was only five months old when she was attacked: another dog grabbed her by the neck. Her windpipe was punctured, and she had severe soft-tissue damage. She also developed a Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus auerus infection, which is a type of flesh-eating bacterium that caused widespread necrosis – the death of cells – on her throat. (The photos are too gruesome to see.)
Her owner visited her twice a day in the hospital, and employed every possible medicine and method he could find, not excluding treatments that were considered holistic, even “spiritual”. The doctors, inspired by his stern determination, did everything in their power to help her.
Lo and behold – the miracle happened: she began the long road to recovery. The MRSA infection "disappeared", her wounds healed almost overnight. Nobody could believe it. Doctors, professors, even vet students came to see her, as they had never heard of a dog before that survived such trachea injury.
She had two major throat operations. She was unable to breathe unaided. The head veterinarian of the clinic was worried that she would infect the ward, in which case the whole department must have gone into a full lock-down. Her cage was placed into an empty room at the end of the building.
The doctors unequivocally advised her owner to end her misery, and put her down, as her survival chance was estimated at a mere 10%.
But even though being in pain, unable to eat and drink, and with all the tubes hanging out of her body, Mimi made it clear she wanted to live. Her tail had not stopped wagging each time someone came to see her.
After spending nearly a month in intensive care, she walked out of the hospital on her own feet, with a permanent tracheostomy. As dogs with an open trachea are prone to lung infection and pneumonia, the prediction was she would only live for a couple of months, at best.
Six years later, Mimi is still with us! h
Happy as Larry, living life to the full, to the amazement of everyone who meets her, and learns about her case history.
She is our finest example that we must cherish and embrace each moment, and to never give up when we feel we still have a wee chance to succeed.
Furthermore, she is also our own little “reference dog”, who demonstrates with her own existence that with the right training and care, a dog can be helped to rebuild trust in the world despite having lived through such a traumatic experience.
Most dogs that survive an attack at an early age likely to end up as a “mental wreck”, and be absolutely terrified of dogs or people, or both.
But not Mimi!
She is always full of high spirit, and loves everything and everyone – dogs big or small, cats, chickens, squirrels, all other animals, and especially children.
If you ever have a chance to meet her – be prepared: she will give you a zealous kiss, no holds barred!
Mimi is not only the “mascot” of our school, but she has become the epitome of courage and determination for all of us. Through her story we have educated countless people about the importance of socialising our dogs in order to avoid dog attacks.
And when those accidents happen, there is hope to help our best friends to rebuild trust, and in time, to find peace and harmony with the world.
Let her story be an inspiration for us all.