Comment permalink

Blind Shih Tzu, Puppy Mill Survivor Overcomes Rough Start

Thursday, January 24, 2013 - 1:15pm
blind shih tzu

If ever there was a dog whose prospects looked grim, it was Carson the Shih Tzu. Two years ago, when the three-year-old breeding dog was rescued from a puppy mill in central Minnesota, Carson’s face and underweight body were completely overwhelmed by huge mats of hair, urine and feces. When his rescuers bathed him, they discovered that his eyes had been eaten away by infection. There was nothing left to save: His eye sockets were cleaned out and his lids sewn shut.

Jessica Danielson was on seeking a companion for her senior pooch Diesel, and although she wasn’t looking for a challenge, she was drawn to Carson’s posting. “I knew I could give him everything he needed. God put him right there and said ‘This is the one. He needs you.’ When I called the rescue to set up a meeting, Carson’s foster mom almost started crying because she thought he’d never find a home.”

“It took almost a year before he would trust me enough to cuddle me, kiss my face, and just feel safe enough to wander the house,” remembers Jessica. In spite of his rough start, Carson is now a very loving and affectionate boy who has taught his new mom, in her words, about “survival, trust, and the real meaning of love!”

Carson’s impact on Jessica doesn’t end there. Now in love with the breed, she went on to adopt two more rescued Shih Tzus—Ernie and Mr. Wiggles—and became a volunteer foster mom for special-needs dogs through Ruff Start Rescue.

Did you adopt a puppy mill dog? Tell us your story by emailing [email protected]. And remember, never buy a puppy in a pet store or online—they almost always come from puppy mills. While a pet store puppy may be hard to resist, purchasing one dooms his parents, dogs like Carson, to lives of cruelty, filth and neglect.

Visit to learn more and take the pledge not to buy anything at pet stores or on websites that sell puppies.

Add new comment



sue fulleton

Carson reminds me of my Nikki (AKA Nikki Taylor Super Model). She came to me with one eye and a tongue that hung out forever due to a dislocated jaw. Eventually her other eye and hearing were gone. Until the end at age 16, Nikki never lost the bounce in her step. I too learned about the "special in special needs." I will never forget her and what she taught me about love.


Thanks to all of you!!! We had a Shih Tzu for 17 years named Rascal. The best dig ever.

Amy Kaelin

I just have a question, was the previous owner prosecuted for neglect and cruelty to animals....if not, they should be for sure!

Kathy Aronoff

There is a special place in heaven for Jessica
I sincerely hope whoever did this to that sweet baby
(& I am sure there were others ) received the punishment
Due and that horrible place no longer exists


What a beautiful story. I am so happy he found a home with you. This is true compassion.

Claudette Possani

Beautiful story, Carson was lucky and did Jessica, God just put them on their way, nothing happens by chance! lovely and amazing friendship, wish we had more humans like Jessica in the world. Bless you Jessica and good luck Carson little angel!!!


I am so upset I can't stop crying. How sad to treat these beauitiful puppies like this. How heartless could these money hungry people be. They will have no luck in life. God Bless the people that save these poor aniamls and give them a good and loving home. God Bless you!!

Maarit Rinne

Why don't you do something in the States about the laws? Puppy mills obviously are not illegal over there. They should be!!! Honestly!!!!!


It's great that this little guy is now being cared for, but what about stopping the problem at its' source - the absolutely worthless people responsible for this - these sub-human morons need to suffer!!!

Jane Miiller Va...

What a beautiful story ... I commend you as a responsible and loving owner to Carson and also to ASPCA for helping our animals friends in so many ways! God Bless the animals and you all.