Update 22 July 2019 – watch Pickle’s Vid dated 22 July on our Facebook page !

Pickle is starting to learn what being a puppy is all about! He is now walking all the time. He is still very wobbly and is having physio to help his posture and balance but is doing so well. He does still have a few issues with his throat but is eating really well. If you watch the video, please note that the lead is only to help stop him falling!


Massive thank you again to all of you who have donated and supported us throughout, you are amazing.

If you want to help us with his treatment, you can donate directly from our Facebook page, @bleakholt

or use the Donate button at the top of this page, send us donations in the post, or phone us to make a card payment. Please mention Pickle when making

donations so we know the money is for him and thank you.

His story so far…….

12th February 2019

We would like to introduce you to Pickle, our smallest resident. Pickle came into the Sanctuary two weeks ago in a terrible condition. He had been purchased the week before on Gumtree.

Pickle came in emaciated and weighing just 400 grams. We were given an age of ten weeks but it was clear he was much younger. His front legs were not working and he was struggling with his co-ordination. His temperature was just 35.5 Celsius (this should be 37) so he was rushed to the vets.

After warming him up and giving him fluids, Pickle went on to stay with one of our Staff who is still fostering him. An immediate diagnosis was very difficult due to his size, weakness and general poor health, but it was thought that it may be a neurological problem so Pickle was taken to see a neurological specialist. The specialist advised that due to his poor condition, Pickle should have regular small feeds and be given special care whilst he recuperates before any tests could be made.

He struggles to retain heat so has to be kept warm at all times. We have struggled to find him a coat small enough! During his two weeks in foster he has made huge progress and has started to use his front right leg and has also started to stand on his own for small periods. He is still being nursed in his foster home and still has regular small meals which he needs help to eat, but is still making progress. We are very pleased to say he has gained 110 grams too. He has his next appointment to see the specialist on Thursday so please keep checking back for updates. We don’t know what the future holds for Pickle but we will do everything possible to give him the best chance.

If you would like to donate towards Pickle’s care to help him get well and strong, or to any of his friends here at the Sanctuary, please use the donate button at the top of the page, or please donate directly from our Facebook page, @bleakholt as we receive the full amount of your donation (with no charges!)


13th February 2019

Weighing day – and an increase of 5 grams today! It’s only a small increase but still progress. Pickle was bored! But he had a little play after…..got tired, started yawning……

14th February 2019

Pickle has been to see his specialist this afternoon and loved getting lots of attention from the staff there. It is likely he has hydrocephalus which is common in his breed. Due to his size he can’t have any tests at the moment so has to go back in three weeks. Pickle has to continue to be closely monitored as a result. He has made massive improvements in his mobility over the last two days so we are hoping this continues. Depending on how he develops, he may need surgery when he is big enough, but we hope this won’t be needed if he carries on as well as he has been doing. At the moment he is a happy little puppy who’s tail doesn’t stop wagging! Thank you to everyone who is sending jumpers. Happy Valentine’s Day from Pickle!

20 February 2019

Pickle has now put on a total of 250 grams and is now weighing 650g so this is a huge improvement. He has started to walk, just short little distances of around a meter but he is doing well. Every time we try and get a video he falls over, so once he is a little more steady we will try and get a shot to let you see! We will keep updating until he sees the vet again in a few weeks time and hopefully we may have a diagnosis and an idea of what treatment he needs. In the meantime, that tail is still wagging…….

28 February 2019

Pickle has had a more difficult week this week and has been struggling with some pain around his shoulders. He is still eating well and playing but is uncomfortable at times so is going to see the specialist next week. He is still managing to walk a little but is still struggling. He has put on another 100g which is great as he has nearly doubled in weight. He is still happy and a playful puppy but gets frustrated as he can’t do as much as he would like. Hopefully with his special diet he will make more progress over the next week and we will update you when he has seen his specialist. He had a gorgeous blanket donated this week which he is really enjoying! Come on ickle Pickle – you can do it…..

8 March 2019


Pickle went to see the specialist today who is pleased with his progress overall. However, as he is still having mobility problems and some discomfort around his neck and front legs he is booked in to have a CT scan at the end of March. Pickle needs to put on another 200 grams before he can have this scan. However he currently has a poorly tummy so we are hoping he overcomes this quickly. He is bright and playful and eating well. The results of the scan will determine if surgery is needed.

He doesn’t mind a visit to the Vets as there is lots going on and plenty more people to give him even more attention and cuddles!



10 April 2019

Pickle has been doing well but is struggling with his walking and still has some discomfort. He went for a CT scan today to find out exactly what the problem is. Sadly it was not the news we were hoping for as he has a few problems including an instability of his vertebrae at the top of his spine. We will get full test results back next week and a treatment plan which is going to include surgery, but given his age and size it’s a very difficult operation for the vets to do. We were hoping for better news as he has progressed so well in the last week and has started walking more and more.

However in Pickle’s true fighting spirit he came out wagging his tail as always! More updates as soon as we have them. Keep everything crossed that we can give him the quality of life he so deserves.

Update 16 April – Just to keep everyone informed, little Pickle has taken a turn for the worse. He is going to see the Specialist again tomorrow. We will update you as soon as we can.

Update 19 April

Pickle has had a difficult week but is now on the right pain medication and is feeling better. He is snoozing quite a lot which is a good sign as he is more comfortable. He has a spinal condition which is causing his vertebrae to press on his spine. The good news is that he can have surgery, but the bad news is he does have a higher risk with anaesthetic. Should the operation be successful he should have a good quality of life without the need for further intervention. However, without surgery he will be unable to walk and it would be unfair to continue.

We would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has donated and sent in gifts for him. However, we still desperately need funds for his surgery. Due to his size and complex condition it is a spinal specialist operation which requires equipment to be made especially for him. Any donations no matter how small to help cover the costs of this are hugely appreciated. He is under the care of a highly recommended spinal specialist and we are doing everything possible to get Pickle the life he deserves. Thank you so much for your continued support and your kinds words, donations and messages have been amazing and we are all so grateful here at Bleakholt. (Please note that should we be lucky enough to cover the cost of Pickle’s op and treatment with your kind donations, anything over the amount it costs us would go towards vet treatment for Pickle’s friends at Bleakholt).

Update 1 May 2019

Pickle is having his surgery on Friday 3rd May. We are all desperate to have good news but won’t get any updates until late tomorrow as it is such a complex operation. We will update you as soon as we are able. Thank you so much to everyone that has donated and supported. Unfortunately we still need further funds for his surgery and treatment so if anyone would like to help, we would be thrilled. Fingers crossed everyone please.

Update 3 May 2019 (3 p.m.)

We are over the moon to tell you Pickle has had his surgery and is now awake. There is still a lot of recovery time to go but this is amazing news! More news as we get it……

Update 7 May 2019

The wonderful vets at North West Veterinary Specialists have said that Pickle might be able to come home tomorrow if he continues to improve. We cannot thank them enough for the care, dedication and amazing treatment they have provided to Pickle. Such an amazing team. More news tomorrow but everything crossed!

Update 8 May 2019

Pickle is home! It will be a long road to recovery but at least he’s home. He is struggling a little with eating so we will give him very little but often of all his favourite foods for the time being. He is having physio and needs to be cage rested for six weeks. We will add some pics when he is a bit brighter. But all in all, this is fantastic news! He certainly is a little fighter and the Vets have even remarked on his strength and determination. We cannot thank them enough for the care, dedication and amazing treatment they have provided to Pickle – such an amazing team.

Update Mid-June 2019

The latest Pickle Pupdate is that the Vet is really pleased with his progress so far. He has been on crate rest since his op, starting off in a small crate and then graduating to a bigger one and has now nearly finished this period of rest. He is having physio 3 times a day and has just been given some new exercises to help him improve. He can walk a little now and is gradually getting stronger although he does need some treatment on his front left leg and may need a splint to help with this. We are hoping that he will be able to have hydrotherapy soon too. He still has a way to go yet but fingers crossed for his continued improvement. Despite all his hardships and difficulties, Pickle’s unique fighting spirit has shone through and he has continued to wag his tail throughout – what a little fighter!

Update 27 June 2019

Pickle has been for his check up today. He has been admitted as he has had a recurring throat infection so the vets want to get to the bottom of this. He is progressing well in every other way and his posture is improving daily. We are hoping that the throat problem is nothing serious and that he will be back home very soon.

Massive THANK YOU to everyone who has donated towards his veterinary costs so far

If you would like to help us take care of Pickle and give him every chance of survival, you can donate directly from our Facebook page, @bleakholt

or use the Donate button at the top of this page, send us donations in the post, or phone us to make a card payment. Please mention Pickle when making

donations so we know the money is for him.


(Please note that should we be lucky enough to cover the cost of Pickle’s op and treatment with your kind donations, anything over the amount it costs us would go towards vet treatment for Pickle’s friends at Bleakholt)