Saturday, December 29, 2012


 I think it was 2003 when I first met Else and her dog Tanna in Stockholm, Sweden. They had hired me for a consultation. Tanna, was one that was adored by every one and had her own day care mom, Siv. Sadly, Tanna passed away in 2012 and left big holes in Else's and Siv's hearts.Years passed by and then a wonderful surprise when I received an e-mail from Else back in November, she would like to adopt a dog.  Now in November 2012, could I help them find a new love to spoil?
 You who have followed our blog might remember the story about Gaby. Rescued back in April from the streets in Napoli. My friend and volunteer Martina called me telling me that she had a very sick dog in her backseat. Could she take her to the hospice? Martina never miss uses our friendship and I knew this was a special case. (There are more than 70,000 strays in the region around Napoli.)  Martina and Pio were out driving and it rained and was cold. Suddenly Martina saw this "ugly" looking dog but with a beautiful aura, trying to get peoples attention. The dog followed the people, trying to get them to see her. One man turned around and smacked her with his bag. That's when Martina yelled; "Stop, Pio!"
 Gaby was very sick. High fever and a skin problem but what amazed us was that her tail kept going despite her illness. She loved all the volunteers and they lovedvher. She was super friendly to all the client dogs. Gaby was great at the vet  clinic when Dr. Fransesco examined her. Gaby was on Tolomec for 7 months and special baths were being made to address her skin problems.
After only a couple of months, she looked amazingly much better. We wanted to find her a home. I brought her with me back to Germany since an American family had signed the adoption papers. At the last minute they backed out, but I couldn't let Gaby languish down in Italy, I knew a family would come. Everyone loves Gaby!
 In my house together with 14 other dogs and kids, Gaby loved to be in the middle of everyone and everything. She shared the bed with my husband and when he looked up there she was laying with her head on his pillow next to him admiring him. He said many times it was kind of spooky feeling, she nearly felt "human." I joked saying many times; "There must be a mini Buddhist inside her or maybe an Alien." A German family wanted to adopt her and tried her out and thought she was perfect (mom and son) but returned her after 24 hour saying it was not Gaby's fault, it was the mom who didn't feel ready with all the work. We were stunned since Gaby was the easiest dog ever and of course, everyone loved her. We had tears in our eyes since Gaby had so much love in her heart and we felt like she was rejected the whole time. But Gaby only wagged her happy tail, looked at us in her special way and kept loving on.

So, this is when I get Else's e-mail asking for a suitable dog. In a careful way I called Gaby and showed her the picture of Else and asked her this time; "Do YOU think this is a match for you?" It was better that Gaby chose this time since I had had the wrong judgement twice. Gaby thought right away that this lady would be perfect, since Gaby wants to "work" to heal hearts.
 Else is an educated, bright woman and sometimes she volunteers for elderly people. Would Gaby want to join? Else has also educated herself in dog psychology and other dog courses. "Oh what do you think she wants to do? I know so much we can do." Not to forget her own day care mom Siv is also over-exited to finally have a new love in her life.

Else was going to celebrate Christmas with her family at her sisters house in Germany "only" a couple of hours away from us. The day came and it was a bittersweet feeling, we had grown attached to Gaby but in another way she needed so much more than we could provide. That feeling flew away when we met Else, I was relived at how much she genuinely loved Gaby.

I took Gaby to my veterinarian Dr Martina for re-checking to be sure that passport and papers were up to date and nothing was wrong. Why would it, two veterinarians had checked her in Italy and the Agriculture Agency (ASL2) had provided her with passport. But I am always nervous. Dr. Martina took out the microchip reader and read off Gaby "Eh, Mia Gaby has two microchips!"

I thought I would faint. I contacted Martina who started to make panic research with the Agriculture Agency , veterinarians and other volunteers. The microchip belonged to a "bad" shelter and the owner hadn't claimed her missing -- and was probably still getting money for her. No one wanted her back in Italy. (That's a relief but boy three nerve wracking days.)
 Gaby waiting with mom at the Frankfurt airport. And she walked in the crate like this was a normal thing.
 So much snow in Sweden, fantastic. But oh boy so many dogs, is this the dog paradise since every one has an owner here?

 And of course they walked up and greeted Siv. I got a message saying; "They love each other!"
 Else keeps repeating on the phone "I cannot understand this, everything she went through and she is this amazing, easy, loving dog"
Well, dear Gaby, you keep up your mission in this life to open up and heal hearts, and I will keep my word to tell the world your story. This is a true miracle story. That's Amore!

Thank you all for supporting and not giving up. Martina & Pio, All the volunteers at the hospice, All the sponsors that made it possible for us to give her the correct treatment, Dr. Fransesco & Dr. Damiani, The Mercer Family, And all Gaby's friends along the way.....and to her new moms Else and Siv.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


ANGELS DO EXIST and some are from Sweden.

This lovely lady Mia Holm arranged a meditation/healing/love evening to send good energies to our hospice dogs and other dogs around the world.

11 wonderful people joined and they donated money; 240 euro to our hospice.
That's Amore!

Thank you everyone ♥ we are so touched by your event ♥

(picture below; tuss.bennergard rojas)

THE HORSE CALL This is Mia's link please visit and read more about this fascinating woman.

Thank you so much for love and support. That's Amore.


 This is a super fighter girl!
 She is fantastic, amazing and beyond the words I can find to say about her.  As you could read on earlier blogs about Colomba, she was picked up from one horrible shelter and was sick. She had been there for 7 long years. She went in for emergency surgery her uterus was bleeding and had to be removed. After that she was the wonder dog again. She is always happy wagging her tail, loves her own room with bed and comforts (no dogs are in cages)

Then a couple of days ago she didn't want to eat and she got a fever. She was rushed to Dr Damiani's clinic and an ultra sound was done. Internal bleeding.

Dr Fransesco was called in (22 december) to assist the surgery.
 For several hours they worked on this 15 year old girl. Yes Dr Damiani and the team knows and are extremely upfront to tell us if the dog is suffering, or....if she would be full off cancer.
 This was taken out, tumor and the spleen. It will be sent for examination so we can know more about the "alien" looking thing.
Colomba is back at the hospice and doing wonderful. Thank you Dr Damiani & Dr Fransesco for saving her life, despite Christmas closing and with all the Christmas stress they went in and saved our Colomba.

That's Amore!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012


 My last column for 2012, hope you will continue following me 2013. Enjoy!

Whichever ones, whom live in dignity or not, can no outsiders judge. Mia Mattsson-Mercer believes in the inner power of all living beings.

To live a life that is worthy, what does that mean? When is a life no longer worthy? In my work, it is not difficult to save the animals, but the most difficult is to explain to the people that the dog can be saved even though it might look really bad.

Volunteer workers who come from "rich" countries have often not seen sick stray dogs or dying dogs. In the richer countries stray dogs are captured and in most cases they are euthanized (killed) within a short time.

During several years of research and practical experience, I have found that even dogs who have spent up to 16 years in cages can still be very mentally stable and they can acclimate quickly to life in a family as an adopted pet.

But many of us are not used to travel to undeveloped countries or in countries where street dogs live. I remember my first years after the war in Bosnia, it was the toughest time of my life with a lot of pain involved to see everything “wounded” and destroyed. Never had I seen such suffering animals walking around me.

Many of us have never practiced at a veterinary clinic or in the tough shelters. In richer countries, fewer dogs will be brought in that have been hit and run over by cars.  It is also more rare that dogs come in with tumors the size of oranges hanging under the belly, limbs that have self-healed at odd angles or with other serious illnesses.

We become aghast when we see this in countries where there are many street dogs. Dogs are reading into our eyes and they will be just as unhappy in their eyes as us when they see the persons sadness, wondering why this creature in front of them is so unhappy - just as children do.

The dogs look miserable and we humans interpret it as suffering. "Oh look, such a sad dog, he suffers." But in many cases, the dog does not suffer; the dog is just trying to survive.

Or when we're talking baby talk to the dogs. Animals listen and interpret the energies and the tones. We and they react the same way to the tone of pity.

When I am sad my daughter asks me with the same sad eyes, she looks just as miserable as I am, "is it happy or sad tears, Mommy?"

We in the "richer" countries euthanize dogs in shelters on the grounds that there is no dignity for dogs to live in a shelter. But it does not help to solve the problem of stray dogs or puppy mill breeding. Most important is to remember that they are living and emotional souls that we euthanize due to our own beliefs and for our own convenience.

Today, anyone can save animals in war zones or shelters, but how many of us can handle, for example, to go along with Doctors Without Borders? I wonder how many sick and starving people we would see that we would consider having no quality of life?

The eyes reflect the pain! I remember when I worked in Sarajevo, Bosnia and often experienced other people's pain through their eyes. Without words, I could feel their pain through my own eyes.

When I recently was in the hospital for treatment, I met people from different countries with the same disease, symptoms and pain as me. Most of us agreed that this disease does not give a decent life to live, but we are fighting for our lives. None of us want to throw in the towel.

Mr. Estonia was one of the strongest patients and he had the right attitude. I shared with him my opinion that he was very admirable, headstrong person. Mr. Estonia laughed and told me it was his upbringing that had been tough. His upbringing had taught him to view life's challenges from a different perspective than perhaps many others would.

He did not see his childhood as something tragic, but as a great survival tool. His parents' home was seven kilometers from the school, and every day he went back and forth, fourteen kilometers, in sunshine, rain, hail and what was the worst he thought were the snowstorms. "When I was half way home, there was no choice but to fight on through the cold and feeling cold, with wet mittens.

No one can have a straight answer for whose life is worthy or not. We all have our own paths to walk and our own crosses to carry. But it is important that we take good care of each other along the way, and to share our own reflections of what dignity is with humbleness. Keep a warm glowing eye when you met others.

We all want to see love through the eyes of others, which channeling from the heart. Our eyes never lie!
I can look through the eyes of the four-legged souls (sometimes three) with silence and it allows our communication to flow via our hearts.

With this I would like to send a warm hug to our four-legged friends, the people who love and cherish them,  and a big hug to all of you who so faithfully follow my columns every week

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

I look forward to the Earth 2012-12-21 enters the new feminine energies where we will think more with the heart that channel to our eyes.

That's Amore!
 Mia Mattsson-Mercer

Monday, December 24, 2012



together with the all the hospice clients Casa dell'Amore and AWL Team Amore.


In memory Creature Kleber.

In Creature's name and his lovely four legged friends, Gus &Vinnie from Brentwood LA, USA came a wonderful Christmas present to our Hospice Casa dell'Amore in Italy. We received 1000 dollar.

For those money we can rescue other animals that doesn't have any owners that can pay for their surgeries or medicines.

Thank you wonderful Kleber family for being such wonderful carrying friends.

MERRY CHRISTMAS Craig, Tracey, Creature, Gus, Vinnie, Fred, and all the other four legged you are guardian Angels to.

That's Amore!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012


 This is Max! He is our new client at the hospice. He has a wonderful soul and the hospice clients greeted him fondly. 
Some kind people  in a Parco was feeding MAX and trying to get him feel good, his tail was going but not gaining weight. He had a hard time walking since his strength in his back-legs were so weak. Diarrhea started to become a problem, his behind was soared. He went to one vet and he was de -wormed, he went to another vet and they said it was neurology problem and he went back to another veterinarian and blood test was being done.

He is having leichaminiosis.

 We need all your help to help Max back to health. He is very sick and we need more tests to figure out what all his problems are
. Its like a puzzle. He is skin and bones and have difficult keeping food = gaining weight. Max get a speciel food and it is 3 euro/can He need 4 a day! He got leichaminosis and need milteforan and zyloric that is 200 euro/ month. His backlegs is not working 100% and we want to have him x ray. We need 150 euro. 

Please help us give Max a healthy Christms. Pls donate and earmark MAX

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


My weekly column, translated from Magazine NARA Sweden. Hope you enjoy ♥

Proper nutrition, medicine, and love means everything for good healing

Mia Mattsson-Mercer knows what it takes to heal and regain strength. After she suffered in the same way that their dogs

 down at the clinic did, it became even clearer.

In my work we save sick dogs found on the street or in various types of shelters. I have to be quick to rule out problems to get to the actual situation when it comes to assessing dogs' symptoms. I use my intuition and knowledge to read the animal energies.

One of the most common conditions we treat dogs for in our hospice is Lyme disease. First, we test our new dog clients to see if they have Lyme disease. The test, called "snap" test is quick and is done using a few drops of blood on a small tray-formed tool.

Lyme disease is one of the most common diseases that dogs down in southern Italy are carrying. Symptoms include joint pain, pain and tenderness in various parts of the body as well as skin irritation. In addition, the disease can cause the dogs to be timid against bright light. They also eat less, or not at all. In most cases, my gut feeling is right and we can quickly address the Borrelia/Lyme disease with antibiotics.

A canine’s response is outstanding. They have one goal and that is to become healthy. Dogs do not want to be a burden or a threat to their pack, whether the herd is made of two-legged or four-legged individuals.

The dog comes to our hospice for treatment with the right kind of medication. Furthermore, they are helped by the healthy food and opportunities to be together with volunteers who love them dearly.

Proper medication, healthy food and love for fast healing. This is a combination that our own health care should try to take into greater account.

I cannot help but smile at my own situation right now. At the moment I am sitting in a beautiful treatment room and receive intravenous antibiotics three hours each day for five days. I have been sick for over a year with a diagnosis of Lyme disease. I have the same symptoms as my own four-legged clients down in Italy. I have pain in the joints, extreme sensitivity to light, I’m irritable, have headaches and skin irritation.

My husband joked with me and said that I probably should move down to my own hospice for faster results and more understanding!

No doctors that I have met have wanted to take Borrelia seriously even though the disease is one of the most common in our society today. Many doctors blame the symptoms on “burnout”, rheumatism, “stress”, or that "it's all in your head."

Health care for people has become worse. Analgesics and happy pills prescribed to younger people. They mask the problem whilst “treating” the symptoms. Even the dogs have started to receive happy pills instead of true treatment for the underlying problem.

The doctors I have met have wanted to prescribe painkillers for me. A doctor told me that my body was depressed! The next doctor said that my problem was in my head! I refused to take the pills despite terrible pain. I am extremely afraid of becoming dependent on the pills and accepting the pain and stopping searching for the right doctor and the right cure.

I smile at how fast I and the veterinary team are to take Lyme disease blood tests on dogs. With successful treatments we quickly get them healthy, often within two weeks. But people can go on for years before any doctor does a Lyme test.

We dog owners can even vaccinate our pets against Lyme disease at the American base. When I lived in the U.S. we had our dogs vaccinated against the U.S. Borrelia each year. Yet, not people!

Is it that we humans confuse our doctors with our descriptions of all the different symptoms and that is why we are sent to several different specialists? Or is it the economy? The animals do not communicate verbally, but the vet often goes on their sense combined with knowledge. Could it be a small part of the development?

After a year, I have now found a clinic that cures Lyme disease and that takes me and other people from all over the world seriously. Moreover, they have the same concept that we have at our hospice. Right medication, healthy diet and love from the staff. They say, "you know your body best, listen to your symptoms and do not give up."

That's Amore!

Mia Mattsson-Mercer

Friday, December 7, 2012


Our great volunteer Angelina caught and brought in "Snowhite" to Dr Damiani. 
The clinic preformed

-Skin scraping which ruled out Scabies (mange)
-Fungal test (ringworm)( pending results )
-Under general anesthesia we shaved the area and cleaned with a chlorexidine solution to remove all the scabs and disinfect the area as well as possible
-We tested him for felv , fiv and heartworm ( all negative)
-Given Mrs. Angela approval we neutered him .
-currently he is on antibiotic therapy.
Among all the other possible underlining causes, especially if the ringworm test wil come out negative, They have to include a skin rush due to Herpes virus.

 Keep your paws crossed for Mr Snowhite!

Please help us support Snowhite with donations OR

Thursday, December 6, 2012


 OUR LOVELY 15 YEAR OLD COLOMBA (rescued from shelter a couple of months ago)
 SWEET SO SUGAR SWEET EVE (rescued from the streets)
 NORA THE HORRIBLE DETERMENT GIRL (rescued from shelter)
MYLORD OMBRA (rescued from horrible condition) EVA IS ADMIRING HER PRINCE.

These are some of our lovely guests that have been save from horrible conditions. Thanks to you, your support are their rescue. Without you we wouldn't be able to give them health and life.

AWL are so happy to have you following us and supporting us. Without you, we do not exist.

That's Amore.

Saturday, December 1, 2012


 We wrote about Angelo before, a lovely senior dog that was found by a family on the streets in the garbage. He had a self healed broken leg that he was laying and chewing on. He was in discomfort.
The family took him in and wanted to make the best for Angelo. AWL sponsored the amputation, cleaning the teeth and blood test.
 Here is sweet Angelo happy home rolling in the grass. The family told me that you could se a big change in his mood, he is much happier now.
 Thank you Dr Damiani & Team for everything.
Sponsors because of you we can save animals from discomfort and pain. You are making a big difference. Thank you.

That's Amore.

Sunday, November 25, 2012


Make a donation to AWL Hospice and Rescue Team and we will send you our wonderful Christmas Cards as a thank you.

Picture is rescued Funny from a horrible shelter, very sick. Brought to AWL Hospice for treatment and Love.

Now she is adopted by wonderful Silvia in Northern Italy.

That's Amore.



 This is Eva (Eve) she is an English Setter found running around on the highway with a rope hanging around her neck. She was rescued by Flavia and brought to Dr Damiani clinic for examination.
 She is very under weight but have a great mind and heart. First she is a little shy but after 1 minute she is playing and having fun. She is a petite girl only 10 kg.
Thanks to you and your support she can stay in the hospice for treatment and a lot of love. Ombra the male English Setter loves Eve. That's Amore.

Friday, November 23, 2012


Angelo was rescued by an American family down in Southern Italy. His front leg was damaged and he couldn't walk on it. Every day he licked and nibbled on it. AWL got a request from the family if we could help with Angelo's surgery?
Dr Damiani and Dr Fransesco made the surgery this week and everything went super. Even after three days is ANgelo up walking and wagging his tail.

We got so much to learn from our four-legged friends.

He is up for adoption to a five star family, but the foster family will have him in their home until we find that family. (Angelo is house broken)

Monday, November 19, 2012


NOW AND THEN......not even one year of treatments. That's Amore.


This is Angelo, he is +10 years old-- we think. He was rescued by Family Callahan  when they saw he was injured and "hobbling" around on the streets. Dr Damiani explained that Angelo had radial nerve palsy and couldn’t use his leg. We d
ecided to try antibiotics, Vitamin B injections and some physical therapy to see if we could get any function back. So far nothing. It has been agreed that the only solution is amputation. 

Tomorrow Angelo will have his leg amputated since he is liking and seems to be very bothered of his "hanging" leg.
AWL would like to sponsor this surgery to give Angelo his quality life back. Family Callahan have promised that he can stay and heal. Angelo is no barker, he is house broken, great with other dogs, cats and small children.

Please make it happen and help us with donations. The surgery will cost around 500-600 euro. Ear mark it "Angelo" or leave an envelope at SS vet clinic. Thank you for helping us helping the animals getting a quality life. That's Amore.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


Gaby our sweet-heart that we have posted about several times is now finally going to her furever home in Sweden.
She was rescued in Italy by Martina and Pio, stayed at the hospice, brought up by Mia to Germany and now we found the perfect home for her. She is going to Sweden!

I know the new 'mom' and her extra "mom" and know it couldn't be better. Gabelino will will have a wonderful, fantastic, creative and lovely spoiled life.

When they met, we will post lovely pictures, we promise. Only wanted to share the good news!

That's Amore!


This is Sally, one year old (10 kg) and spayed yesterday. She was rescued by volunteers; Martina and Pio who spotted her roaming around a lot of cars in heavy traffic. Sally was stressed and in a kind of panic mood. Like she had been dumped and not used to be a street dog.
 Sally is staying in Martina and Pio's home resting after being spayed at Dr Damiani clinic.
Sally is great with people and other dogs, a really sweet-heart. Sally would be happy to be a family dog--she got her dog-bag packed and ready to go.

Thank you AWL for sponsoring for the steralization. That's protective Amore!