*Leech Lake Legacy is a 501(c)3 tax exempt non-profit organization

Envisioning a world where every reservation dog and cat is well cared for

Friday, September 5, 2014

Gilligan and Louie: Rez dog to service dogs in training

In June of 2014 we kicked off a partnership with Patriots Assistance Dogs. Gilligan (formerly Gilbert), an 8 month old lab mix pup, was the first dog surrendered to Leech Lake Legacy at our June wellness clinic. To read more about how this partnership came to be, and about Gilligan, click here: http://leechlakelegacy.blogspot.com/2014/06/new-partnership-with-patriots.html.

Then at our July clinic, Louie (a 4 month old pup) was transferred over to the care of Leech Lake Legacy. Louie had been picked up by Rory, Leech Lake Community Services Officer in Onigum on Leech Lake Reservation. Dennis Junker of Patriots Assistance Dogs came to our clinic to make the transfer of Gilligan/Gilbert from Leech Lake Legacy to Patriots Assistance Dogs official and to get him neutered and checked out by our vet! While waiting for Gilligan, he evaluated dogs/puppies who had been surrendered or turned over to LLL by the Tribal Police after their stray hold period had been completed. He noticed a small energetic little pup named Louie being carried by a volunteer and within 30 minutes it was clear Dennis felt like Louie would be a strong candidate for service dog training! As Dennis couldn't take Louie right away, Leech Lake Legacy volunteer Paula, offered to temp foster Louie until Dennis was able to take him. Louie was officially transferred over to Patriots Assistance Dogs at our August clinic and like fellow rez dog Gilligan, he is going through service dog training!! Both Gilligan and Louie are doing phenomenal in their training and we just got some updates from Dennis from their training visiting firefighters and EMTs.

From Dennis:

"Here are a few photos from today's training!!! Suited up fireman didn't fool Louie at all!! Gilligan just hesitated for a second!! Gilligan assessing the open stairs saying "really dad"!! LOL Louie didn't miss a beat on the stairs!!"

Dennis meets Louie at our July 2014 clinic

Gilligan and Louie meet firefighters!
Gilligan assesses the open stairs!
Gilligan - EMT training

Louie - EMT training
We are so grateful to Dennis and Patriots Assistance Dogs for giving these 2 amazing rez dogs not only a second chance, but a chance to become service dogs and to provide service and companionship to veterans who have served our country.

Gilligan and Louie, we are so proud of you!! Keep up the great work!!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Leech Lake Legacy School Supply Drive

Today kids are returning to school .... and for many, they had the good fortune of shopping with parents to purchase and select all their needed school supplies.  Unfortunately, for many of the Leech Lake Reservation's kids and youth, there was no shopping excursion for school supplies.

After three 3 years of partnering with the Leech Lake Tribal Police to help the animals of Leech Lake Reservation, we have built wonderful relationships with the residents, community members and elders of Leech Lake Reservation. At our last spay/neuter clinic in July Ken Washington, Leech Lake Tribal Police Chief, thanked  me and Leech Lake Legacy for all the work we have been doing for the animals. As we continued talking it became so clear to me how our work up at Leech Lake was about community, and how grateful I was for all the amazing relationships we have built over the years. Our work is about both the animals and people.

Ken then asked, "Would it be possible for us to get donations of hats, glove and mittens for the children of Leech Lake?" He continued to share how so many of the kids go without gloves, hats and mittens in the bitter winter months. A week later, I was requested by Steve White (Dist. II representative of the Tribal Council) if we could help in obtaining school supplies for the children.

So we/Leech Lake Legacy have decided to do what we can to help raise donations of school supplies, hats, mittens and gloves for the children of Leech Lake Reservation. For the first two weeks of September we will focus on school supplies. For the last two weeks of September we will shift our focus to gloves, hats, mittens and coats for the children.

We are grateful to the Animal Humane Society (and to Grand Avenue Veterinary Clinic) for partnering with us to help raise donations. Donation bins are set up at all 5 Animal Humane Society sites, Now Boarding and Grand Avenue Vet.

Feel free to contact me at mchanrasmi@gmail.com if you have any questions.

chi miigwech,

President/Co-Founder, Leech Lake Legacy

Saturday, August 9, 2014

An evening with Diana Webster, President/Founder of Native America Humane Society

Leech Lake Legacy is excited to welcome
Diana Webster, President/Founder of 

Date: Wednesday, August 27th, 2014
Time: 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Location: Skyridge Center and Nature Preserve
5800 Baker Road
Minnetonka, MN

Come hear Diana share a few words:

- Managing Stray dog and feral horse populations on tribal lands
- Learn more about Native America Humane Society/NAHS and Diana's vision
and plan to bring native and non-native stakeholders together to find solutions 
for the challenges facing Native Communities in humanely managing
their animal population
- Learn more about the emerging collaboration of NAHS and Leech Lake Legacy

Space is Limited so register early.

Registration fee: $20
[Registration fee waived for tribal members. Email info@leechlakelegacy.org]

Qty - Tickets

Light refreshments and beverages will be served.

Questions: info@leechlakelegacy.org

Coming together to improve the lives of animals and people of Native communities:

NAHS Mission:
To restore the Native tradition of honoring all beings by providing information, support and resources to animal protection programs in Indian Country.

LLL's Vision:
Envisioning a world where every reservation dog and cat is well cared for.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Little Nibi ... The will to survive!

Little Nibi arrived on transport on 7/26/14
On Friday, 7/25/14 we received a call from a resident of Leech Lake Reservation. He found a kitten laying on his driveway with a big gash on her side. He drove Little Nibi to Cass Lake to meet up with LLL volunteers Nancy and Eileen who happened to be at the impound cleaning and walking the dogs. Nibi was immediately taken to our partner Animal Care Clinic in Bemidji where they sewed her back up. The vet believes the gash was most likely caused by a hawk or eagle.

On Saturday, little Nibi came down to the cities. We had nowhere for the sweet girl to go but new we had to bring her down. We are grateful to Leech Lake Legacy board member, Sandra, for stepping up and agreeing to foster her. She has a long way to go with healing but she is feisty and full of spirit and fire and has an incredibly strong will to survive and live!! :)

On July 28th, Sandra sent the following update:

Nibi went to Kindest Cut today for a follow up visit and is doing well.  She is about 4 weeks old and weighs exactly one pound.  She will go to the vet next week for another follow up visit.  She is still favoring her left rear leg but hopefully that will get better with time and the healing process.  The sutures/staples will have to be in for another week or so.  I had to work today so Jenny came and picked her up for her vet appointment. She has been on a couple of outings with me since I try not to leave her for long periods of time while she is recovering. She is eating and drinking well and is provided with pain management.

At night she sleeps in a crate with everything she needs and I put the crate on a bench right next to my bed so I can hear her if she fusses during the night.  She seems to be sleeping and resting well though. Not that she would get far but I have a fenced yard so I took her outside for some fresh air and some time to walk around in the grass and she seemed to enjoy that. All in all she seems to be doing well considering what she has been through.

And on July 31st, we got the following update:

She is starting to use her left leg a little more so that's a good sign. She is having some diarrhea that started yesterday so I stopped at Kindest Cut after work today to get some sub q fluids so she doesn't get dehydrated and some pyrantel to deworm her. She has discovered the toys in her room and has started to play with one ball in particular. Auntie Terri comes over everyday while I am at work to visit her and make sure she has enough fresh canned food and formula mixture.

She really seems to like her big bed that was donated by Chuck and Don's as I often find her sleeping in there instead of her other bed so I moved her stuffed animals to her big bed. :) It takes a village to raise this precious girl. My Dad commented about how dedicated we all are to make sure that even the tiniest of kittens gets the care and tlc she needs to get better :)

And yesterday (August 1st), she got to spend the day at Kindest Cut for another re-check .... she apparently didn't like to be left alone so the staff let her hang out with them in a shopping cart :)

Nibi supervising (or more likely distracting) Kindest
Cut staff while she spends the day with them
If you would like to stay up-to-date on little Nibi's progress follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LeechLakeLegacy

And a big thanks to all who have played a role in making it possible for little Nibi to be given a second chance.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Dillinger's long journey continues ...

Handsome Dillinger - 26Jul2014
Dillinger was released to the care of Leech Lake Legacy in May, 2014. He spent about a month at the Animal Humane Society where they took care a lot of his medical needs and surgery to neuter him. We learned he also tested positive for heart worm and AHS was going to treat him for his heart worm but unfortunately Dillinger had some handling issues and was getting a little stressed in a large shelter environment. We decided we need to pull him from a shelter environment and place him in a temp foster home to see how he would do. Dillinger went to spend some time with our amazing temp foster Heidi. He has been with her for the past month.

A couple weeks ago, Leech Lake Legacy reached out to RAGOM (Retrieve a Golden of Minnesota) to see if they would consider taking Dillinger into their foster program. RAGOM's intake manager, Denise, was very open to the idea and asked to meet Dillinger. Well ... let's just say Dillinger wowed Denise with how well behaved he was and how smart he was!! :) RAGOM committed to taking Dillinger and began working on finding a foster who could foster Dillinger through his heart worm treatment. We were contacted last week that they had found a foster for Dillinger.

So today was the big day ... we met at Heidi's house and Dillinger officially became a RAGOM dog. We are told he will be the only dog in his foster home and will have a stay home mom who will be pampering him all day :) A huge thanks to RAGOM for your willingness to take Dillinger AND for treating him for heart worm. And Heidi, it goes without saying .... you are an angel for so many of the animals. It is clear you had a special bond with Dillinger and you have provided him with all he needs to move on to the next stage of his journey.

By all of us working together, we are able to help precious animals like Dillinger.

We will be sure to post updates on Dillinger as we receive them from our partner RAGOM :)

Dillinger and Heidi

Dillinger and Heidi

Dillinger ... a beautiful bond with foster mom Heidi

Dillinger shows Denise how smart he is :)

"where's the cheese???!!" :)
Officially a RAGOM dog!! :)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Mimiteh (means 'new moon') ... her long, healing journey begins

Mimiteh arrives in the cities on 7/23/14
By Marilou Chanrasmi -Co-Founder/President, LLL

On Friday, 7/19 I received a call from Jenny Fitzer, Program Director of LLL. She learned that the Leech Lake Reservation Community Services Office/CSO had picked up an older german shepherd mix with severe mange and taken her directly to our partner vet clinic in Bemidji, Animal Care Clinic. We typically send our adult dogs with mange to our partner, Red Lake Rosie's Rescue (in Red Lake Reservation) where Karen Good (founder/ED of Red Lake Rosie's) provides and care and treatment for them till we are able to transfer them to a partner shelter or rescue. Unfortunately, with the overwhelming number of mange and sick animals already in her care, Karen is unable to take Mimiteh. We request for a 4 DX test to be run on Mimiteh and the results come back showing Mimiteh is positive for heart worm, lymes, erhlichiosis and anaplasmosis! She also has sarcoptic mange ... She is an older shepherd (probably close to 10 years old), is malnourished, has no hair on her tail and is continuing to lose hair, and she is very listless.

Leech Lake Legacy does not adopt out, nor do we foster long-term ... we focus our efforts on transporting animals (from Leech Lake and Red Lake reservations) to our partner groups who then vet the animals and place them up for adoption. With our partners being full and at capacity, and no one able to take an older dog with MANY health issues that would be costly to treat, and quite frankly, a big question on whether or not she would even make it, Jenny and I struggle with what we should do. I ask the vet tech at Animal Care Clinic, 'can you tell if she is in pain?' They tell me she seems comfortable but repeat over and over, 'she is in really rough shape.' I flash back to December 13, 2013 when another GSDx, Ituha, was brought into the clinic -- the worse case of mange I have ever seen and literally frozen. We lose Ituha that night and many, many hearts were shattered. But out of that pain, emerged the Ituha Animal Care Project (click here to read more about Ituha and the Ituha Animal Care Project). All I can see is Ituha ..... Jenny and I agree, "we can't give up on her. We have to at least try."

I put a plea out on the Leech Lake Legacy volunteer Facebook group to see if anyone has the ability to create a quarantine area at their house and is able and willing to temp foster Mimiteh so we can bring her down to the cities. Within a couple hours, I receive several emails and one of our volunteers, Melissa, says "I have a spare bedroom I can quarantine her in. I just need a day to move out the bed and staple down a tarp." Our hearts are full of gratitude and we immediately set the wheels in motion to get her down on transport.

Mimiteh arrived on an emergency transport yesterday (Wednesday, 7/23). A huge thanks to Tom O'Sullivan for transporting her all the way to the cities. She was seen by our vet (Dr. Meghann) last night and has begun treatment for her mange (Advantage Multi) and has also begun doxycycline which treats the tick-borne diseases (erhlichiosis, lymes and anaplasmosis) and also provides initial treatment for her heart worm. Blood work has been sent off to the lab so we can see how her other organs are doing. We will hold off on heart worm injections until she has more time to heal and Dr. Meghann knows more about how her other organs are doing. Mimiteh appears to have grinded most of her teeth down .. her tongue hangs to the side as she has no teeth to hold her tongue in place. We often see reservation dogs with teeth in these conditions. Karen at Red Lake Reservation tells us that dogs grind their teeth down on the rocks as they search for food. Melissa (Mimiteh's foster) gave Mimiteh a bath last night and fed her some high quality food (donated by Chuck & Don's). With no teeth, Mimiteh has challenges eating ... I received the following text from Melissa last night, "I mix warm water with dry and one can of wet .. she eats by scooping it up with her bottom jaw and swallowing the food .. I started crying when she was eating. The will to live is amazing."

Mimiteh has a long journey ahead of her. I ask for you to hold her in your heart and to send loving and healing energy her way.

If you are able to help with Mimiteh's care, please consider donating towards her care, and the care of others like Mimiteh.

Dr. Meghann and Mimiteh
Mimiteh with foster mom Melissa :)
Thank you Melissa!!