Willow the Blind Great Dane


Willow's eye surgery and spay is going to cost as much as $1368.00.  This is a large sum for AAS. Can you please help us pay for Willow's life-giving surgery? There are several ways you can donate.

Video: Willow romps in the yard like any sighted pup

Willow the blind Great Dane puppy looks forward to a happy future

AAS just got one of those emails that we get almost daily: a plea for help for a sick or frightened animal from someone who is doing the rescue but who can't afford the bills.  This one is about Willow, a Great Dane pup born blind, rescued by Shawna who also rescued Star the Yorkie puppy who was found in a box outside when it was 40 below, a thick rubber band around her muzzle. Star's video story has been posted on websites all over the world.  See it HERE.
Shawna takes up the story:
"Willow was born just over a year ago. A lady went to buy a pup from a Great Dane breeder and saw Willow, an eight week-old puppy, walking into everything, barely able to walk, scared and  crawling around. The breeder said she was going to put her down as she would be "no good".  So the lady took Willow along with two more puppies. Willow adapted for most part, though needing to be guided when in a new place and still walking into things and hitting her head, which was not good at all. She was easily scared by sudden noises and movements.
"I heard of Willow from a friend who said the lady who had bought Willow had too many dogs and was unable to fence her yard so Willow has been almost hit by a car a few times by wandering out onto the road.  I drove for over an hour to get her. "
What Shawna took home was a shockingly skinny, frightened youngster in terrible pain from infected ears and eyes. Willow's eyes had not developed in utero.  They will have to be removed and the lids stitched together to stop them from becoming infected and inflamed over and over.   Willow was taken to the vet for ear and eye infection treatment and at that time we were given an estimate of about $1,200 for her spay and the eye surgery.  If you want to donate toward Willow's eye surgery, just go to DONATE.
Shawna again:
"We all went camping the July long-weekend and she had a wonderful time and was just amazing.   She needs to be on a harness when out as she requires you to be her eyes. She is not good at that yet but every day she gets better.
She and my other two dogs took to each other easily.  She cautiously approached them, smelled, and then all was well. And then she and Star started to play! 
We all get up at 7:30 and go outside where they have potty time. Then it's time to eat. Willow eats off a chair so that she doesn't put a strain on her neck vertebrae by leaning far down.

Then it's play-time and she and Star play for hours. It's a joy to watch two dogs saved from the brink of death playing all day. Even my old girl "Lady" doesn't mind her. Then sleep, play some more, and sleep some more.

Willow is unable to be outside in bright sun as she cannot close her lids and the tissue in her eye socket could burn. And because her skin is pink and her hair short, we have to limit her time in the sun.
She is able to get around our home without trouble as long as you don't move anything or warn her when things are moved. She spent the first sixteen months of her  life in a kennel, knowing nothing of the joys that were her right.  And now she has perfect freedom in our home and a lot of freedom outside. "
Willow is a smart dog and with the right care she will be fine.  She is no longer one of the poor helpless innocents who have no choice, no voice, no hope, no luck, no rights. With everyone's help Willow's eyes will stop causing her pain and Willow's happiness will become her right.

Willow and Star and Lady tired out after a long, interesting day

There will be a video of Willow very soon. Check back.


There has been such a flood of appeals for help this year that we may not be able to reply very quickly or at all to more appeals.  AAS is now so well-known for its experience in all animal welfare and rescue matters that we are asked for advice and help from all over BC, Canada, the U.S. and the world.  For years I have answered each and every appeal with detailed advice that I have learned from 20 years of rescue, advocacy and animal law. Our high standards are well-known to the public, that is why we are so often asked for help and advice.

We are currently working on so many projects that I am sorry to have to say that we may not be able to respond to all the cries for help we hear as quickly as we want to.

AAS ethical standards are simple and straightforward, but a lot of work: Every rescued dog is given the exact same love and care that I give my own dogs.  Anything less can't be morally justified.  To weigh the costs, to kill, or to rehome without paying to make the dog well in body and spirit is not true animal welfare: it's moving as much product as fast as possible and to demand money for unwell product is a business, not a calling. 

Judy Stone

Please donate if you want to help us help more needy animals.
Restore your faith in humanity. Heart warming stories of brave people and how they have rescued abused and neglected dogs. Many happy ending stories and video too, right here.

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