Featured Pet: Arya

Arya is an awesome, happy Pug with lots of love to give. She lived with a single family since she was a puppy. She got along great with kids of all ages, regularly went to doggy daycare, and even lived well with a cat in her previous home. Even without any formal training, Arya did not have any behavioral issues and knew basic skills like ‘sit’ and would come to you when her name was called. Although Arya has an easy-breezy personality, she had some medical needs that began to drastically increase in a short amount of time.

Arya has allergies and was prone to ear infections. Because of her allergies, she was on a special diet and prescription allergy medication. As time went on, her previous family started to have concerns that she was showing signs of going blind and was also diagnosed with diabetes in January 2022 which required a strict schedule of insulin injections twice a day.

At the time Arya’s medical needs began to increase she was living with a single family member who was solely responsible for her extra care. A few months after Arya’s diabetes diagnosis, her owner was dealing with serious family challenges, making it impossible to balance family medical needs along with Arya’s diabetes care and mounting health concerns. Although it was a difficult decision, but her owner came to the conclusion that he could no longer care for sweet Arya. Knowing Our Companions specialized in helping vulnerable animals, Arya’s owner contacted us for help and we welcomed her to our Ashford Sanctuary in July of 2022 at 7 years old.

When she arrived, Arya was underweight and did have signs of limited sight and pain in her eyes, along with her diabetes and allergies. After a few exams with a veterinarian, they confirmed something was definitely wrong with Arya’s left eye. Her left eye was obviously bulging, appeared painful, she had poor vision, and her eye pressure when from low to high pressure which indicated Glaucoma. Our veterinarian felt it was best to have the painful, blind eye removed so we set up an appointment with a specialist to address our concerns. Specialists confirmed she was blind in her left eye, she did have Glaucoma and pain, and it was best to have the eye removed.

Arya had a very successful eye enucleation, or eye removal surgery, in December 2022. Having that painful eye removed certainly put a spring in Arya’s step! She was definitely more comfortable; her personality blossomed even more and her weight even went up! All the while we were trying to manage her diabetes, continuing her twice daily injections and using a glucose monitor placed on her back every few months to track her levels. Her glucose levels proved to be difficult to manage but after consistent care, we finally felt she was at a manageable level in her diabetes and we could start promoting her for adoption at the beginning of 2023!

Arya comes with quite the list of medical needs, eye drops, insulin injections, allergy medications, and special food, but she has never let any of her medical hurdles get her down! She is a trooper, a survivor, and still such a sweetheart! She’ll squeal with excitement at the sight of you; overjoyed that she gets to hang out with her friends, get pets and lots of love! She simply just wants to be with her people, relaxing and enjoying the day- especially when the day is spent on the couch chewing her favorite toys!

Since coming to the Sanctuary, she has learned new focus skills and we are working on cooperative care training to aid in administering her eye drops so she feels more comfortable and relaxed. Although Arya has never put up a fuss when administering any of her medications, cooperative care training is aimed to aid in getting our pet’s consent when giving medications like eye drops! We have worked with her to train a ‘chin rest’ where she puts her chin on an elevated block to administer her eye drops, and get bits of chicken treats of course! We use a silicon licky-mat with some wet food when injecting her insulin so it is all fun and treats when it is medication time! We even celebrated her 8th birthday this summer!

Arya has come a long way and we have loved to care for her and help improve her quality of life. Arya is joyful, she makes funny, high pitched pug noises of excitement, loves her squeaky toys and Lamb Chop stuffies, and loves couch snuggles with her people! Arya loves to go on little field trips, like walks around the local Senior Center but, as per her breed, she does not need a lot of outside time – unless the weather conditions are just right – nor does she require any strenuous exercise. She would much more prefer to chew on a bone in the AC or leisurely sniff around in a play yard! She has lived well with a cat and seems to have a good temperament for people of all ages! She’ll need a special home with people who understand her medical needs, expenses, and schedule, but she is easy to fall in love with! If you are looking for a best buddy, look no further than our awesome Arya! To learn more about this sweet and spunky girl, please contact our Helpline at 860-242-9999 or email [email protected]


  1. Terry Walker on August 15, 2023 at 9:40 am

    I am Arya’s friend from my weekly Tuck In volunteering. She is so sweet and easy to spend time with. I watch as she gets her evening insulin and I’m impressed with how easy it is to administer- she never makes a fuss. She will make somebody the perfect little pug-companion.