Submitted by Carol Backers, NBRF Director
July 2011

Currently for 2011 NBRF has had 17 Borzoi go through rescue. We have learned through Teresa Burk, DVM a litter of puppies were born at Pickle Hill in MO under the watch of Lou Lofgrem. Teresa was able to get the puppies and is placing them once they are altered. NBRF has sent her a home for one of them and will continue to do so as we can. We again offered to take all the remaining Borzoi on the Pickle Hill property and were again refused.

I am most upset that the Board has chosen to censor the reports NBRF sends upon request. Therefore, NBRF will no longer send reports to the BCOA Board. The general membership has the right to know what is happening with rescue yet the board has continued to censor the reports made. It is not up to the board to decide what the membership have the right to know and what they do not have the right to know. Rescue concerns everyone. It is not privileged information unless otherwise stated.

NBRF will make a yearly report to the Beverly Taylor Committee.

The Boards continued censorship of NBRF''s reports leads one to question what else the Board is not making public to the membership. Neither this or any other Board has the right to keep information that affects the membership private. I, as a dues paying member of BCOA, have the right as does every other member, to know what goes on at the board meetings. It is time this board understands that and realizes that BCOA belongs to the members, not the Board members.

Respectfully Submitted,
Carol Backers

 


 

Submitted by Carol Backers, NBRF Director
January 23, 2011

In October 2010 NBRF got 3 borzoi in from a no kill shelter in Vermont that were owner turn ins. We understand that this owner in Burlington,VT is in violation of her kennel permit and has at least another 10 borzoi, however the local jurisdiction is not acting upon this violation. We have found that the owner has imported multiple dogs into the USA and has not registered her dogs with the AKC, though she has had at least 2 litters over the past 2 years. We anticipate getting more borzoi from this location though not from the owner herself but again from a shelter where she dumps what she apparently no longer wants.

In October 2010 I was contacted by Name Removed From Report via email. She stated that she wanted to surrender 24 Borzoi to NBRF, 12 now and another 12 a short time later. She stated that her husband had just passed away and she could no longer afford to feed all the dogs she had. I returned her email stating that NBRF would be happy to assist her, however before taking any dogs, any and all co-owners, co-breeders and those dogs bred by others would need to be returned to those people as NBRF could not take dogs co-owned by others or where the breeders or co-breeders were known. I also understood that many of the co-owners, co-breeders and breeders of dogs that she had/has are BCOA members. I never heard back from her and NBRF did not receive any of her dogs. I understand that She is still traveling to coursing events and is able to afford entries and travel expenses, and has another litter planned if not already on the ground.

NBRF is most happy to help any breeder finding themselves in need of help for their Borzoi but, it needs to be understood that NBRF is not a dumping ground for breeder''s unwanted dogs so they may continue to breed.

As you all know, Fern Lockrem died in September 2010 leaving her husband, Lou who is in his 80’s, to care for their Borzoi. NBRF immediately offered help but the offer was refused. At the time of Fern''s death there were between 116 to 130 Borzoi at Pickle Hill in Garden City, Missouri. Friends of the Lockrems’ posted to various Borzoi email lists that Lou Lockrem could no longer afford to feed the dogs since Fern’s death and financial help was needed. It was requested that people send money to the feed store where Lou purchased dog food. I understand that Amy Balthrop and Bonnie Dalzell were at Pickle Hill shortly after Fern’s death, as well as some other people, and were helping Lou care for the dogs. I understand that many dogs were given away, sold and/or placed in homes. I later heard that Lou had hired some Hispanic workers to assist in the care of the dogs.

Shortly after Fern’s death, Mark Nickle of Meadowbrook Dog Rescue out of Kansas was given 10 of the dogs from PH (Pickle Hill), those being the Borzoi that were in the worst condition. While there, Mark Nickle also bought a young puppy for $300 and left a donation of several hundred pounds of Iams dog food. Mark stated to me that he had been told that the people at Pickle Hill wanted these dogs out of there before a Veterinarian came onto the property and saw their poor condition.

Meadowbrook Dog Rescue temporarily placed 8 of the 10 dogs they took with their volunteer, Linda Bean. I am including the photos of the dogs that were taken to Linda Bean’s in a separate email. As you can see in the photos, one of the dogs was immediately euthanized because it was suffering so badly and it was the kindest thing that could be done for the dog. The other 7 were treated for fleas, were de-wormed and seen by Linda’s vet for basic medical triage. A short time later, Linda Bean suffered a heart attack and was hospitalized.

On November 8, 2010, an NBRF volunteer, who is also a veterinarian, picked up the 7 Borzoi from Linda Bean’s, and these were the first Pickle Hill dogs to officially come into NBRF.

The Borzoi picked up from Linda Bean were in very bad shape. A male Borzoi, identified as “Flash” Pickle Hill’s Flash HM89622704, who was later dubbed “Charlie Brown” by the Iowa vet, was in the worse condition. When Charlie Brown was picked up by a representative of Meadowbrook Dog Rescue at Pickle Hill, he could not stand up without assistance and when standing could barely support his weight. He was matted to his bedding with dried blood and half of his tail was missing and had a bloody stub on the end. One other Borzoi could not stand without assistance either.

The trip from Linda Bean’s to the veterinary clinic in Iowa was long for these poor souls and at one point the two volunteers had thought 2 of the dogs had died in the back seat of the truck but all the Borzoi did survive the trip and arrived safely in Iowa. At the veterinary clinic the work began. The Borzoi were bathed, fed, given love, attention, and dry bedding. It was found that one of the Borzoi had three fused and one deformed vertebrae in his neck and was in severe pain. After consultation with the University of Iowa Veterinary specialists, he was euthanized in loving hands as there was nothing that could be done to relieve his pain and suffering.

Charlie Brown was literally x-rayed from stem to stern to figure out what skeletal malformation caused his inability to get up or stand. All his bones and joints were as they should be and further testing ensued. Besides being extremely hypothyroid, Charlie Brown was found to have a systemic infection, oozing sores including pressure sores on his joints, no hair, urine and fecal burns and many rotten teeth with tooth roots exposed and abscesses. I have included pictures of Charlie Brown so you may all see his progress.
I contacted Teresa Burk, DVM and friend of the Lockrem’s and offered NBRF assistance as I was told she had been going to PH regularly and was giving basic medical care to the dogs and had microchipped all the Borzoi that had not been microchipped prior to Fern’s death. I also contacted Claudia Cullison who lives in California and knew the Lockrems and offered NBRF assistance. Claudia had already been in touch with Lou and was making plans to go to PH as a friend to Lou and to as an attorney on his behalf. Once at PH, Claudia told me Lou was convinced NBRF would take all the Borzoi and put them to sleep and therefore he was refusing to allow NBRF to help.

Liz Duncan-Burge, Vice-Director of NBRF, suggested that I, Carol Backers Director of NBRF, step down from this particular rescue effort and allow her to take the lead. Claudia relayed this information to Lou Lockrem and he accepted that stipulation and requested NBRF and Liz Duncan-Burge to assist him with the remaining Borzoi. NBRF was told there were around 60 Borzoi left at PH. Liz coordinated the efforts and volunteers to take approximately 60 Borzoi with Sue Breaz volunteering to take up to 30 Borzoi for staging, vetting and fostering. NBRF stipulated that NBRF would get all the remaining Borzoi with the exception of two older female Borzoi who would be left with Lou. This was made very clear and Lou agreed, signing an NBRF surrender agreement. A copy of which was scanned and emailed to NBRF by Claudia Cullison. Persons at PH kept putting back the date that NBRF would be allowed on to the property to pick up the Borzoi. Several weeks went by and with the impending winter weather moving in, Liz Duncan-Burge advised Claudia Cullison, as Lou’s representative, that a date had to be set post haste for NBRF to start removing the dogs at PH.

On November 10th, 2010, Liz Duncan-Burge borrowed a truck and horse trailer and made the first trip to pick up Borzoi at PH. Bonnie Dalzell and veterinarian Teresa Burk met with Liz at PH to assist in the identification and loading of the dogs. Three additional NBRF volunteers arrived on the same afternoon and with Liz taking 17 Borzoi, and the three volunteers taking 10, there was a total of 27 dogs that came into NBRF care on that day. When Liz left, she made arrangements with Lou Lockrem and Bonnie Dalzell to return on November 12th, 2010 to pick up the remaining Borzoi and noted that there were approximately 30 to 35 Borzoi still at PH with at least 3 Borzoi being visibly pregnant bitches.

The night before the return trip, Liz received an email from Bonnie Dalzell stating that NBRF would only be allowed to take 10 more Borzoi. It was discovered that Lou Lockrem had promised a Russian contingency of individuals from the Kansas City area that at least 3 Borzoi that would remain on Lou’s property for the dogs’ lifetime to preserve the breed. In dog vernacular, “preservation of the breed” is equivalent to stating one is going to breed and whelp puppies.

Liz called and asked me what to do if Lou would not surrender the Borzoi as agreed to NBRF and I, Carol Backers, told her to leave PH empty and not bring any additional dogs back from PH if the pregnant bitches and as many of the intact dogs that Lou had initially agreed to release to NBRF were not released to NBRF on that day. I take full responsibility for that decision. Furthermore Bonnie Dalzell and Lou Lockrem had been made aware that the timing of this rescue was important not only because of the impending winter season but as NBRF was able to borrow trucks and trailers and several volunteers had already taken days off of work to assist, transport, and receive dogs.

Liz arrived at PH on November 12th, 2010 and she was told by Bonnie Dalzell that there were only 10 dogs that NBRF could have. When Liz asked about the remaining approximate 20 other dogs, Bonnie stated some dogs were promised to the Russian people and Lou wanted to keep the rest. One of the dogs that was to remain at PH was an obviously pregnant bitch and when Liz asked about that Borzoi specifically she was told by Lou that his wife''s legacy was going to live on and that Fern had had the best Borzoi out there. When further queried by Liz, Lou stated he would have puppies in his sun room and do whatever he pleased with his dogs. At that point, Liz told Lou that if the pregnant bitches did not go on this date, as well as as many dogs that could safely fit in the truck and trailer then NBRF was not taking any dogs. She told Lou and Bonnie that she could return at a later date to take additional dogs but that all of the visibly pregnant bitches would have to leave on this day with Liz. Lou told Liz to leave as he was not letting NBRF take anything but the dogs he no longer wanted. Liz left empty. I personally feel that Bonnie Dalzell could have done more to convince Lou to allow the dogs to leave with Liz but Bonnie neither did nor said anything to facilitate the dogs leaving.

During this time, I was contacted by Maggie Rice of Colorado and she stated that she could take 5 of the PH dogs. She at first offered to take 5 of the Borzoi NBRF had already gotten but I told her to call Bonnie Dalzell and get dogs directly from PH as at that point it would be easier to move dogs west from the Kansas City, MO area than move dogs that were by that time in NBRF and already 400 plus miles east of Kansas City. Maggie contacted Bonnie Dalzell and I understand that 7 Borzoi from PH went to CO with Maggie taking 5 and 2 others going to homes in that area.

In December of 2010, NBRF received 3 more PH Borzoi. These dogs had been given to a Poodle breeder in Missouri by an unidentified person at PH. The Borzoi were given to this Poodle breeder with no signed contract, unaltered, no vet records, no safety net, no back up plan if the home changed it’s mind, and with not even a verbal commitment from the Poodle breeder. The Poodle breeder decided that Borzoi were not a bred for her and she surrendered them to NBRF, which brought NBRF’s total of PH borzoi up to 37 dogs.

As of today’s date, all of the PH Borzoi under NBRF care have been altered and have had all of their medical needs met. Those medical needs have included mammary tumors removed, extensive dentals with multiple extractions, cysts removed, systemic infections treated, chronic ear infections treated, anal fistulas treated, hypothydroidism treated and maintenance medication provided. Only 1 of the 37 in NBRF care had to be euthanized due his medical condition. 20 have found forever homes, with 16 still in foster care. There are three who are still extremely shy but they are making progress in their foster homes.

NBRF has no idea where all the other PH dogs are or how many are still at PH. There are still, to our knowledge, intact males and females at PH. I was eventually told by Teresa Burk that at least one of the three pregnant bitches at PH had been spayed with no puppies born. NBRF was prepared and able to take ALL the dogs at the time of Fern’s death.

Pickle Hill is a situation that NBRF will be cleaning up after for years to come, just THINK of the additional 77 to 91 borzoi that were at PH at Fern’s death. Where did they all go? We know they were not all altered, are there already puppies on the ground from these dogs? Where is their safety net? Will some of them end up in kill shelters because the new owners don’t know about rescue or can no longer care for them? Yes NBRF will be there to clean it up the Borzoi but what happens when NBRF is not called and the situation is allowed to continue or deteriorate – what about those dogs then?

In November 2010, NBRF also took in two borzoi that were owner turn-ins from North Carolina and were in pretty rough shape. The owner contacted us again in December and turned over her last two borzoi on January 1st, 2011.

Liz has done and is continuing to do an outstanding job of dealing with everything concerning the PH Borzoi from placement into foster homes, payment of the bills associated with the dogs, finding foster and permanent homes, keeping track of everything concerning the dogs and keeping me informed. It is Liz who deserves all the credit for this rescue going as smoothly as it has and it has gone very smoothly. Had Liz not stepped up and taken the lead in this, NBRF would not have been able to help and save these Borzoi. It is liz Duncan-Burge who is deserving all the credit for for 20 of the PH Borzoi already being placed into their new homes in such a short time and all, to date, smooth transitions for the dogs and homes. Thank you Liz!

Carol Backers
Director: NBRF

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