Monday, April 4, 2011

Winnie needs Surgery.

Bad news everyone...

Winnie has a torn ACL!

This explains her persistent limp, why she sits in uncomfortable positions like this:

and why she always seems to be sassy or in a bad mood:

"i is sassing you..."

We are glad to have finally found out what was wrong with her leg (actually her knee, read more about it here) but we are blown away by the price-tag.

The estimate we were given by the Vet was $3,284. ($2,200 for the surgery itself and the rest for injections, check-ups and medications.) She said that people often wait longer to get it taken care of but that more scar-tissue and calcification builds up and making the chance of her being permanently lame and arthritic much higher. As it is now, she will probably always favor the other leg, but if the surgury goes well she could be a lot more comfortable in a matter of months.

I am really sad that my young dog (only a year and a half) already has a problem that usually faces elderly or overweight dogs. 
To finance the surgery, I am going to begin selling personalized dog items on Etsy. I am pretty artisitc and crafty, so hopefully it will go well. I was thinking of staring with personalized glass treat jars, labeled with the dogs' name(s) and filled with treats and decorated with ribbon. I doubt I'll sell much but any way we can chip away at that price tag will help.

Do you all have any ideas of some other items I could make and sell? Or other ideas of fund-raising for her surgery? What have you all done when facing high vet bills?

I have posted a chip-in in case any of you feel particularly generous, any tiny bit will help as we are two recent college grads living in NYC with two rescue dogs on paralegal salaries. (or wait until I've got my little craft business up and running!)


  1. Our Annie had to have the same surgery a few years ago. She did great (she is old & overweight); was not able to put any weight on the leg & a few weeks after surgery, it was like it never happened. In this case, I am glad that I live in a rural area as her surgery was nowhere near that high; I am thinking around $900. If we are in a tight spot, we hold a rummage sale. Get better soon Winnie :)

  2. wow, only $900? We are thinking of searching for a vet elsewhere, except that a) i feel bad bargain hunting for surgery and b) they apparently need check-ups every few weeks afterward so it would have to be somewhat close.
    Thanks for the well-wishes :)

  3. Aw Jessica I'm so sorry to hear Winnie's in need of surgery. The bright side is that she'll feel loads better afterwards. Any idea how long she's had it or how it happened?

    What hospital/vet are you currently with?

    When I took Charlie to the AMC for emergency care when I thought he had an obstruction, it was $1,500 on the spot or he couldn't stay there. Needless to say, I'm still paying off those credit card bills and interest. And the kicker? after 24 hours of vet care, he farted, and then was fine. The vet was really embarrassed when she explained it all to me.

  4. YUK! A torn ACL is no joke - that would make me cranky, too. The price tag might be a bit high, though. Unless this is a specialty hospital. At our clinic, we charge around 1200 for the surgerr itself + rechecks, and I know we're not a cheap hospital. I will definitely check out your shop, though - pls give her belly rubs from me :)

  5. Hi
    I actually worked for a non for profit organization and I would love to help you raise some money for your dog. Like you mentioned Pit Bulls ahev a horrible rep and I'm glad to see this one is love and has an owner willing to do anything for her. I had a similar experience with my dog (Toy Poddle) had a dislocated disk. Vet said it was normal for small dogs but he was way to young for it and it was either immediate surgery or euthanezia. I as layoff not even three months and still euthanezia was not an option. I was lucky enough to have family members help me out with the $4,800 bill but know not everyone has that and its not fair for the animal. He has a chance.! I literaly went from the vet to the emergecy hospital where surgeon agree with vet and he was operated. I dont even want to mentioned how much recovery was but dont regret a PENNY. He walks, runs and plays like nothng ever happen and it just shows me I made the right decision.
    After this incident, I started Second Chance. An non for profit organization who mission is to help owner like. Financial distress with animals that have a fighting chance.
    I normally set up a fundraiser events and facebook fundraiser with the community and friends every month to help one animal. I was actually searching for next receipient when I saw your blog ;). Let me know if you are interested or in anything I can help you with. or

  6. What a co-incident here your dog is same with mine. I feel like they might be twins.

  7. Wow- thanks everyone for such caring comments. It is so amazing to see how our friends, neighbors, and blogger-friends have been offering to help in some way. I'm so glad Winnie has so many people willing to offer kind words and advice!

  8. I had a similar experience, my dog ​​has a dislocated disk. Veterinarian said it was normal for small dogs, but his approach to it young, it is either immediate surgery or euthanasia. As lay-offs or even three months, still euthanasia not an option.


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