Minnie Runs Again

There are three dogs that call the sanctuary home: Bugsy, Minnie, and Molly. Minnie and Molly were the first residents, since they were left by the previous owners when the dogs wouldn’t allow them to capture them. A few weeks ago, Minnie started limping. Her knee isn’t great, so we took some x-rays and found nothing new. However, it became evident a couple of weeks later, when a bony lump appeared that there was indeed something else going on. The growth was determined to be cancerous and, after much deliberation between our team of vets and some of their contacts, full amputation was decided as the best treatment. She’s been a champ the whole time and has received pain meds, laser treatment, acupuncture, and lots of support through the healing process. 

Minnie loves running to the barn but was put on strict limited activity post surgery. Once superficially healed, her reintroduction to exercise had to be slow with her new status as a three-legged dog. It’s hard to give up the freedom you once had, so we started taking her to the barn where she can run around in the soft sand stalls when the elephants are not around. Initially, this meant the truck, which she has never liked, but decided it was ok because of where it was taking her. Now, like her sister (they are actual littermates), she’s decided she likes riding on the 4-wheeler as well, as long as it means she can go up and down the hill more often. Molly rides on someone’s lap and Minnie rides behind. 

She’s still healing but, as you can see, she clearly feels good and is ready to run with the others – at least part of the way to the barn.


  1. REPLY
    Luanne L Schick says

    You are Angels 😇 without visible wings 😇 🪽 ♥️. God bless 🙌 🙏 all your Amazing Hearts. Love ❤️ Huzs from Alberta Canada ❤️ 🇨🇦.

  2. REPLY
    Johnny says

    I kept waiting for an elephant to pop out of the bushes!!! Go Minnie!

  3. REPLY
    Lisa Sisson says

    Awww Minnie!❤️ That’s fantastic! Thanks for all that you do for all of these lovely creatures!

  4. REPLY
    Wim says

    Quite a nightmare to Minnie. Thank you for taking swift action. Hopefully she will adapt to her new situation. Strength and courage.

  5. REPLY
    Linda says

    Look at that tail of hers go! A happy pup to be sure. Thank you for taking such good care of her, hopefully catching it early so she can have full recovery and long life ahead.

  6. REPLY
    Susan Flewelling says

    Bless you all! Dogs are very resiliant and adapt well to whatever fate throws at them. Please provide an update from time to time.

  7. REPLY
    Shannon says

    The resilient Minnie! You go, girl!

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    Patricia says

    Wow, Minnie! Don’t overdo it, girl! You know how I feel about dogs! 😇😘😇😘😇

  9. REPLY
    Lori Hoover says

    Minnie is doing great, it seems. I couldn’t even tell at first if it was a front or back leg she was missing. She’s running spectacularly, and learning the benefit of catching a ride as well. Smart girl!!

  10. REPLY
    Barb says

    Amazing! She won’t be slowed down! You go Minnie!

  11. REPLY
    jen says

    Wow, Minnie!!
    What a champ and a trooper.
    Her happiness and glee to be running (so fast, too!)
    and playing with her sister… What joy.
    Amazing what our friends can come back from, still finding so much joy in life.

  12. REPLY
    Sue says

    Way to go Minnie you brave girl!! ❤️❤️❤️

  13. REPLY
    Bonnie says

    Minnie she’s a champ I was watching the video she’s cruising thanks Sara

  14. REPLY
    Denise says

    What a fantastic video to watch, she is really doing well. Hope the eles love her

    • REPLY
      Kat Blais says

      the elephants don’t really pay much attention to the dogs. the dogs know the habitat is the elephants’ space and they are respectful of that. they understand when we are working with the elephants and doing treatments and feeding that they are to stay back and behave accordingly. the dogs do go into the wallow and ponds, but only when the elephants aren’t around. it’s a very respectful relationship and it ensures the elephants- every elephant, is always comfortable in their home. 💜

  15. REPLY
    Julie says

    She’s just as happy as can be still beating her sister in a happy race. It looks like you all did the right thing!

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