When Oprah introduced Sadie and Ivan, a pair adorable blond cockerspaniels to her audience on March 6, collective awws filled the room at Harpo Studios. The talk show queen had already adopted Sadie, an 8-week-old pup from PAWS, a Chicago pet adoption agency. But when Sadie's brother Ivan tagged along for the show, the little dog was so cute that she had to adopt that one, too.
But Ivan died this week from complications with the parvo-virus, an illness that is especially dangerous for puppies who haven't been properly vaccinated; it affects dogs' hearts and intestines and presents with symptoms like vomiting and severe bloody diarrhea. Ivan showed those symptoms last week.
Oprah was so distraught when Ivan became ill that she got the pup a blood transfusion at Hemopet, the only animal blood bank in the country in order to save it's life, according to ztpetnews.com. The transfusion was too late.
"The difficulty was Ivan was too sick," said Hemopet founder Jean Dodds. "He had already become extremely sick. We were hoping and praying, but knew it was possible that he would not make it."
The other cockerspaniel, Sadie, also became sick from parvo but is responding to treatment.
"I'm saddened by his [Ivan's] passing, though we only had him for a weekend," Winfrey said in a statement released directly to ZT Pet News. "I remain hopeful that Sadie will pull through."
In March 2008, Winfrey lost another dog. Her 13-year-old Cocker Spaniel, Sophie, died of kidney failure; and in 2007, her Golden Retriever, Gracie, died after she choked on a plastic toy ball.
March isn't a good month for daytime talk show personalities and their dogs.
On March 9, Martha Stewart lost a Chow Chow named Ghengis Khan in a propane explosion at a Pennsylvania dog kennel. The accident killed 17 dogs and injured a propane delivery man.