The Dog Liberator™

The Dog Liberator rescues abandoned dogs throughout the Southeast. Based in Central Florida, this non-profit organization fosters all of their dogs in a home environment. Founded in 2009, all dogs are fully vetted, spayed or neutered prior to adoption. The Dog Liberator focuses in rescuing the herding breed, which consists of Border Collies, Shepherds, Sheepdogs, Aussies, Collies, and Deaf/Blind Dogs.

Esme the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel ~ Adopted

Esme the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel ~ Adopted
Plumbago makes a nice backdrop

Esme is a six-year-old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.  She has lived her life as a breeder dog in someone’s backyard, one of a dozen small breed dogs.  Crated, deprived of love and attention, she was so dirt and matted when rescued that the hair on her ears had to be cut off.  The matting looked like tar.  It will grow back in and she’ll have her beautiful Cavalier ears again, but to me they are symbolic of leaving a life of neglect and growing into a life of love.

Don't look in those eyes!

And “love” is the word for this little dog.  When a dog comes from a puppy mill situation, it is often emotionally traumatized.  Not Esme!  She is an affectionate happy little thing.  She came to me with Carlisle, who we believe to be her son.  They are the original tail-waggers!  Granted, Carlisle is more inclined to push everyone out of the way to get into your lap whereas Esme relies on her puppy eyes.  Don’t look or you’ll turn to mush!!!  She is very happy to sit in your lap and be the recipient of your adoration.  Smart pup!!!

Esme is not a big dog, not quite 15 pounds.  I think that my yard might be the first one in which she has ever romped around.  You can see her all but sing for joy in this video shot that first day.

Given the circumstance from which Esme was rescued, it is not surprising that she is heartworm positive.  She presents no symptoms, therefore we have no hesitation in recommending the slow-kill method.  The standard “fast-kill” treatment for heartworms requires that a dog basically undergo chemo two or three times and then be kept penned up for three months so it doesn’t elevate its heart rate.  Instead, we recommend that the dog simply be given Heartgard heartworm preventive each month, just as it normally would be.  Ivermectin, the active ingredient in Heargard, not only prevents heartworms but kills them as well.  During the first month the dog is also given an antibiotic and steroid.  Over the course of a year or so, the heartworms die off.  Esme has already started this program and is doing just great with it.

Pretty in pink

I am fostering Esme in Winter Park, Fl.  Be sure to look through both her personal photo album and the one she shares with Carlisle.  If you think that you might be interested in giving Esme a loving forever home, please read our article Starting Out Your Dog Right, review our Adoption Process, and then e-mail me at  You’re going to love her every bit as much as I do!

You can also read Esme’s  Rescue Story and original posting with Carlisle.  I’m so glad we got her out of there!!!









Loving the couch







July 20th Update:

Esme is such a lovebug.  And so joyful too!  Today I let her and Carlisle loose in the house for the first time.  I’m happy to say that they appear to be housetrained ~ yay!  And fun?  Oh yeah, they are such fun.  Smart too ~ they quickly figured out how to jump up on the couch.  Gotta love it!








with Jedediah the Basset puppy







July 21st Update:

Jedediah the basset puppy has arrived and taken the pack by storm.  I was delighted to see Esme join in the play.  She tends to take a back seat to Carlisle, allowing him to get the attention.  But with Jedediah, she happily romps around in the grass with him.  It’s so good to see!





I can fly!






July 23rd:

July in Florida is, well, warm. Very warm. The dogs and I were outside and I thought, “Oh, I’ll get some video of them playing.” They thought, “This woman is an idiot. Let’s go inside where it is air conditioned.” They won!

Heading home to Miami!

July 30th:

Today was the day!  Our beautiful Esme has gone home! Ralph and Melissa drove up all the way from Miami with their 6-year-old daughter Lauren and 2-year-old son Rafa. Having been researching breeds for a while, they knew that a Cavalier was what they wanted, at least in theory. But how would Esme be? Perfect of course! Smart pup knew that Rafael was the one to win over so she jumped into his lap first and licked his chin. From there she turned her attention to the rest of the family, but let’s face it, they were already in love. It was a joy to see Esme respond so well to their young children, and to see them treat her with such respect. I just adore this family, and I know Esme does to: when they were leaving and Ralph was putting Rafa in his car seat, Esme was trying to jump up into the SUV! She didn’t even give me a backward glance! All that cooking chicken stew and that’s what I get for thanks! lol I couldn’t be happier. (Oh, Rafa isn’t in the photo since, after a 6 hour car ride, he was just about done. Who can blame him?)


Adoption Update:



We have changed her name back to Shawndra (from her AKC papers) but we call her Shawny.  She is fully cured of heartworm thanks to the amazing tenacity of the doctors at the Animal Welfare Society here in Miami.  Shortly after we got her we took her to a cardiologist that suggested she was strong enough and a more invasive treatment should be done in order to avoid any damage to her heart. She was treated with three rounds of Immiticide, two were a month apart. They said this treatment worked because she was at stage one.  She had to be kept calm as the worms could create a clot as they were absorbed but that’s easy for her since her favorite past time is sleeping.  Other than the occasional ear infection she has been the picture of health.  Of course old ages catches up to all of us and she’s beginning to show signs of arthritis.   I can’t thank you enough for your work and giving us the opportunity to enjoy her.


I don’t know if any of the pictures below from facebook will come out but she is very happy and loved.  My husband’s business partner and practically another grandmother to the kids enjoys baby sitting for us.  She even bought Shawny a stroller.  Shawny has us all wrapped around her finger and even came out on TV (



Vazquez Family

Melissa, Rafael, Lauren & Rafa

One thought on “Esme the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel ~ Adopted

  1. I met miss Esme today and I think holly is right, she’s relieved as each buddy heads to their forever home because… that means more attention for her! She practically sat on my foot today as I greeted all the pups. She got greeted twice and snuggled into my neck. I think she’d be happy to be held for the rest of her little life. PRECIOUS girl.

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