ELKHART, Ind. (AP) – Relatives of an 89-year-old woman who was the first person to die in Indiana from a multi-state fungal meningitis outbreak are looking for a new home for her dog.

The poodle mix, Lucky, had lived with Pauline Burema at her Cassopolis, Mich., home until she was hospitalized with meningitis after getting a tainted back pain injection at an Elkhart clinic. Burema died Oct. 10 at a relative’s Bristol, Ind., home.

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Her daughter, Carol Snyder, tells The Elkhart Truth that her mother had a special companionship with Lucky.
“They had such a nice bond going on,” Snyder said. “He counted on Mom to take care of him, and he gave love back.”

She said Lucky became her mother’s faithful companion after her father died in August 2010, but now he needs a new home and new companions.

“Even when my dad was alive and he had Alzheimer’s, Lucky would spend a lot of time with him, lying in bed or sitting in the chair,” Snyder said. “Lucky would always stay right there with him. He is such a good little boy.”

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Lucky has been staying with Burema’s grandson at his home near Union, Mich., but Snyder, who lives in New Mexico, said the family can no longer care for him.

Snyder said she took Lucky for a veterinary visit before returning to New Mexico to get him up to date on his shots and have his teeth cleaned. She said Lucky, who was adopted from a Michigan animal shelter, is between 8 and 10 years old and has been neutered.

He’s small, a good lap dog and is housebroken. He also loves taking car rides, she said.

Snyder said that whether Lucky gets along with other pets is questionable, but he loves children and older adults.

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