Say Hello to Pops The Sausage: Internet Celebrity & Therapy Dog
One word to describe internet sensation Pops The Sausage is: SASS! So it’s not surprising that this bold and stylish East London Dachshund has a more extensive wardrobe than most humans. Her interests include feminism, fashion, and snacks, but there’s much more to her than glamour. She has overcome adversity, including major spinal surgery. Nothing can stop this pup from living her best life. Pops’ mom, Charlie Osman, says “she is basically everything I wish I could be.”
Rags to Riches
Unfortunately, Pops was in extremely poor health when she was rescued. Charlie took her new dog straight to the vet for treatment, where it was recommended that Pops be put down. Charlie pleaded to have one week with the dog in hopes of seeing improvement and, though the road to recovery was arduous and expensive, Charlie says it was all worth it! Pops went from being a rescue dog to an Instagram-famous pet influencer. To this day, Charlie says: “Rescuing Pops was the best thing I ever did.”
Intervertebral Disk Disease
The origin of Pops’ now renowned IG account is not what you’d expect. A few years after recovering from ill health as a puppy, Pops was diagnosed with Intervertebral Disk Disease (IVDD). IVDD is a common condition among Dachshunds that causes back pain, partial loss of function in the limbs, and, in some cases, paralysis and loss of sensation. When Charlie first got the news, she didn’t know what to expect. As a result of the diagnosis, Pops underwent a 5-hour spinal surgery. The fear of losing Pops prompted Charlie to realize she didn’t have enough pictures of her beloved dog, so she promised herself that she’d document Pops’ life going forward.
Pops’ battle with IVDD taught Charlie many lessons about caring for a dog with this disease. To keep Pops from overworking her legs, Charlie has to prevent her from jumping, climbing stairs, and walking too much. Even though she can’t go for strolls with her siblings, Puggy Smalls and Pomegranate, Charlie and her partner Nick will carry Pops along to make sure she feels included.
Charlie stresses the importance of being able to financially support your pooch, especially if they have chronic health issues. When asked what she recommends for those caring for an animal with special needs, she says that the “main thing would be to have insurance,” further adding that it’s her “number one piece of advice to anyone with a dog.”
Pawsitive Vibes Only
Luckily, Pops was able to overcome these hardships. Now, this rescue sausage and IVDD warrior spends her time spreading joy both on and off the internet. Online, she makes her followers laugh with her fabulous outfits and creative captions. Offline, she volunteers as a therapy dog.
Pops is able to volunteer thanks to a London-based program called TheraPaws by Mayhew. This initiative allows behaviorally assessed dogs into hospitals, mental health centers, schools, care homes, and hospices to help improve their quality of life, as well as the lives of those who interact with them. Charlie says this opportunity is a win all around. “It is great for Pops because she is literally adored, great for me because it just keeps me grounded and makes me feel very humble and very proud, and great for the residents and staff that she’s visiting!”