Meet the Pup with a Short Spine and a Big Heart Who’s Breaking Stereotypes

Anna Marie Giannini met Tilly when she answered an ad about a litter of Tibetan Spaniel puppies.

She was informed that one of the pups was different, and was going to be euthanized. However, in Giannini’s mind, “different” meant special and good, and knew Tilly would go home with her.

“I had already fallen in love with her and planned out our next year together in my head before he was even done saying that awful statement.”

Short spine syndrome is a rare condition that leaves Tilly with compressed vertebrae that result in no neck and a short back. But Tilly doesn’t know she is any different. She is a dog and does doggie things.

“…she’s capable of anything.”

When Giannini held Tilly, she fit perfectly in her hand. Tilly sat in her lap and she knew they needed each other. Giannini would never let Tilly feel unwanted again.

“…she lay in my lap and looked up at me with her big brown eyes, and I knew she needed me and I needed her.”

Tilly has easily adjusted to life with Anna Marie Giannini. As she grew up, her short spine became more noticeable. All she needs is a little help getting on and off furniture with special stairs.

Giannini gives her scratches that she cannot reach and a daily massage. Other dogs (and their humans) notice her physical differences, and they tend to approach her more gently. Tilly, however, is not timid and is ready to play with any size of dog.

Despite her short spine, Tilly is living her best dog life and thriving. Her syndrome has not given her any health issues or complications. She has a clean bill of health and is expected to live a long life of happy days with her human.

Tilly shows her love and appreciation to her mom by sleeping next to her in bed, standing between her legs in the kitchen, and laying next to her with her paws on her. She also makes sure to give her mom lots of kisses.

“Every hour or so that we’re home she’ll randomly come up to me and give me kisses and then go back to laying down. It is like clockwork. It’s like she needs kisses to function!”

Tilly has changed Anna Marie Giannini’s life for the better. She is thankful for all that this dog has brought to her life.

“Tilly reminds me on a daily basis that I should be thankful for another day … She constantly reminds me that being different is a special thing.”

To learn more about Tilly and her zest for life, follow her on TikTok or Instagram.

Recent Posts