Status: Adopted
Type: Dog
Breed(s): German Shepherd
Size: Medium (21-45 Pounds)
Age: Baby (Under 1 year)
Gender: Male
Hair: Medium
Colors: Black/Brown, Tan
Pattern: Patches

Max is a 5 month old male Pure breed German Shepard puppy .  He came into the West Valley shelter  a month and a half ago emaciated, weak, and neglected, but sweet as could be. When Much Love rescued him, we were not aware he had a bigger health issue going on.  Max was born with a defect called Mega Esophagus. It is a condition very common in German Shepards.  Essentially the Esophagus is bigger than it should be and has no working muscles.  Therefore the food Max eats, sits in his Esophagus until gravity pulls it down, which it really can’t on its’ own, leaving him nutritionally lacking and emaciated.  In addition, the food often comes up, and instead goes into the lungs which can cause frequent Pneumonia.

In Max’s case you would never know anything was wrong with him by looking at him or interacting with him. He is a happy, loving, outgoing, big, floppy puppy.  He loves to try to crawl into your lap and have his belly rubbed.  He loves playing with toys, and going for walks. He loves people and is truly the sweetest boy you will ever meet!

There is no cure for ME, but it can be managed and depending on the severity of the condition, there are many dogs living normal full lives.  The owners who have these dogs would not trade them for the world! The main requirement to keep these dogs healthy is how they are fed and given water. Video of Max:

Generally, they do well with small feedings, usually 4 times a day, with the dog in an upright position.  There are chairs built for feeding these dogs which keeps them comfortably upright while they eat and digest their food (The Bailey Chair). There is an enormous amount of information on Mega Esophagus management available on various websites, as well as an online support group. These have great feeding tips, updates on medications, and wonderful stories of success.[flagallery gid=131]

Max is currently boarding at an animal orthopedic rehab center where he is receiving physical therapy to build up his leg muscles, acupuncture, proper nutrition, managed feedings, and lots of love. We are happy to provide Max with the care he needs to get back on track, but living in a rehab center is not a permanent solution for Max and it is very expensive. Max needs to go into a loving home where he will receive the proper care he needs to live his life to the fullest.

Please consider taking this very special boy into your home.

If you are interested in fostering or adopting Max, and have questions about managing his condition, please contact us at<>.

If you would like to donate to Max’s care, you can do so on our website at<> .