Thursday, 19 August 2010
Two-year-old Storm has been diagnosed with a life-threatening heart defect. His owner, pensioner Rita Lynch, fears she will lose her companion forever unless he has an expensive operation she simply cannot afford.
The white German Shepherd was taken ill in early August and diagnosed with a heart condition by vets, but the full extent of his problem was not realised until a referral to the Queen Mother Hospital in Hertfordshire. Storm has suffered a heart defect undetected since birth, called patent ductus arteriosus.
The ductus arteriosus is a blood vessel that should close shortly after birth. In dogs with the condition the vessel remains open, causing abnormal blood flow though the heart and lungs. Unfortunately, Storm was also diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, or an irregular heartbeat.
Rita said, “I was very shocked to hear of Storm’s diagnosis as he showed no signs of being ill; he was so active and would never rest. Storm is being treated with tablets at the moment but these will not make his condition better – he will deteriorate within a year.”
Storm’s young life will sadly be cut short without an operation to close the blood vessel causing the problems.
The operation costs £3,500 – an expense Rita’s pension will not cover, especially considering she has already paid £700 towards the initial consultation fees, with some support from her family. Tailwaggers Club Trust has donated £750 towards Storm’s operation; now Rita is appealing for help from fellow dog lovers and would be hugely grateful for any donation – no matter how small – that they could manage.
Rita explained, “Storm is my friend as well as my pet, as he knows when I am not very well myself and lays by my side or puts his head on my lap. He came to me at seven weeks old and what a little pickle he was, but I loved him for it. He has grown into a beautiful dog and I don’t want to lose him – it would destroy me.”
UpdateI have some very sad news to pass on. Storm has died very suddenly at home, possibly of a blood clot. Rita's son attempted the kiss of life, but nothing could be done. Rita is obviously devastated, but she still asked us to thank everyone for their help and support. Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with Rita and her family at this terribly sad time.
Wednesday, 4 August 2010
In June, Oliver, a Springer-Patterdale cross, suffered an extremely painful spiral fracture to his hind leg. The unfortunate three-year-old’s owner, Darren Puttock, is self-employed in the building trade, and with no work available at the moment, is appealing for help with his dog’s vet bills.
Darren explained how the accident happened: “When I got a treat out, Oliver jumped up and his back legs went from under him. As he came down he put out his rear leg to stop himself from falling on his back, and landed in a twisting motion, with all his weight on one leg.”
Oliver was referred to a specialist, who planned to pin the broken bone, but this was not possible due to the severe corkscrew-type break. It was subsequently decided that Oliver should wear a plaster cast.
Unfortunately, Oliver’s leg became gangrenous. Sadly, this has led to Oliver losing the pads and smallest digit on his paw.
These complications to an already unpleasant injury mean that rather than a cast, Oliver wears a bandage that is changed weekly so his wounds can be cleaned. To date Darren has paid £2,200 towards his dog’s recovery, generating the money by selling his car and laptop. Oliver’s treatment is likely to continue for another eight weeks and could cost a further £2,400. Darren is extremely grateful to Tailwaggers for donating £300 and would welcome any further donations to help his dog back on to all four paws.
Darren said, “Oliver was such a active dog: he could run up to 10 miles a day, loved swimming and was constantly playing and socialising. He has a great temperament, is well behaved and loves everyone.
“Oliver has always been there for me during tough times, and it would mean the world to me if he could regain his full fitness.”