Fatima's Heart

Listen to the Rhythm of my Heart!

Love for Mia

on January 6, 2015


Mia, the cleft palate chihuahua, was born on June 26th, 2010. Vets noticed the cleft palate right away and suggested she be euthanized. Cleft palate babies are too much work and they rarely survive, but her owners decided to give her a fighting chance. Her spirit and will to live, no matter what obstacle she faced, was unlike anything they had ever seen in their lives.

Sue and Gary Rogers, the founders of “The Mia Foundation,” loved her and took care of her for two years before she passed away on Easter Sunday in 2012. She had fought multiple bouts of aspiration pneumonia, the first one being when she was 4 days old and had multiple surgeries to fix her palate. She had to be tube fed five times a day and went every where with them so that if she aspirated, she could be suctioned.

And she was a lively little dog, made friends every where she went. She is no more but her legacy lives on. By taking the time to save her life, she, in turn, opened the eyes of many people, veterinarians and breeders who thought special needs babies weren’t worth the effort.

The Mia Foundation was created to give animals, born with birth defects, a fighting chance. So many animals born with cleft palates, deformities or missing limbs are euthanized at birth just because they are too much work. With a little effort and a lot of love, these animals can give back a lot more than imagined. All they need is a chance!

Little Max was another chihuahua born with severe scoliosis (deformed backbone), severely deformed ribs and only one functioning lung. He was the first animal taken in by the foundation. He was only 6 weeks old and by the time he turned seventeen months, he was ready for adoption. You can read more about his story on their website.

The foundation first rescues babies born with defects, takes care of them till they are physically stable and then puts them up for adoption. Most of the animals that come into the foundation require multiple testing and extensive surgeries. From the very expensive veterinary care, to the formula that each pup needs in the months to come, right down to intensive physical therapies, are all covered for by donations.

Many dedicated volunteers have put in a lot of time and hard work to raise the much needed funds and also to take care of the already sufferIng animals. Fostering, caring, feeding, transporting and finally adopting these babies is the aim of these self-less volunteers. Janet Lynne Jones is one of the volunteers who manages the fund raising part of the foundation.

She recently (in Dec 2014) was able to arrange a successful bowl-a-thon for the Mia Foundation. She frequently holds auctions of donated items on facebook and looks at ways to raise funds for the foundation. She herself has one of the Mia foundation babies, Peanut Nuckols, who came into the foundation from Florida with seizures. Now she lives happily with Janet.


If you go through their website, you will not only find success stories but also list of animals that are currently under evaluation and treatment and those that are ready for adoption.

You can find information on how to take care of a puppy born with cleft palate, what and how to feed them and in case you want the foundation to take up any such baby, they will send you an overnight emergency kit to take care of the pup till transportation can be arranged. You can also read about Swimmer Puppy Syndrome where a puppy paddles his legs like a turtle and is unable to stand.

There are links to their facebook pages where you can follow and post individual animal stories, participate in their fundraisers, connect with specialists who can guide you about adoption, transportation and financial assistance in taking care of any such animal.

Although the foundation is based in Rochester, New York but animals come in from all over US. Volunteers, donors and well-wishers from all over the world look up to The Mia Foundation for support and guidance on how to take care of animals born with birth abnormalities. Let us give them a hand. With expectations, emotions and expenses running that high, they need all the support they can get to continue with the great work that they do. It is all about LOVE for The Mia Foundation!


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