The title of this post may sound overly dramatic, but the truth is, I need help. About a week ago, Alfie started limping. He wasn’t limping all the time and sometimes he would run and play like normal. By Wednesday night, he was limping so badly that he wouldn’t jump up into the car to go for a ride. I called the vet, Dr Thomas at Healing Hearts, on Thursday and got an appointment for Friday. The initial diagnosis was a bad muscle sprain. The vet gave us some pain pills and instructions to call if it didn’t get better. Fast forward to yesterday, Monday. The office staff at Healing Hearts called to check on Alfie. He was still limping and it didn’t seem to be worse, but it definitely wasn’t better. We got an appointment today for a re-check and x-rays with sedation. After he woke up, the vet called me in to talk to her. Dr. Smith, the orthopedic veterinarian, happened to be in the office at Healing Hearts today and suggested that they x-ray his leg with a slightly different view as well, and found out that Alfie has a ruptured ACL on his right rear knee. The surgery to repair his ACL will cost approximately $2100. The vet also found another issue on Alfie’s x-rays. It seems that our boy has moderate to severe hip dysplasia on both sides. Eventually, both hips will need to be repaired, but repairing the ACL immediately is critical. We are looking at a long road ahead of us with a lot of medical bills for our boy. Honestly, we cannot afford it right now. With repairs to our house and tuition & books for my husband’s last semester of college we simply cannot afford to spend $2100.
It was a beautiful sunny Saturday afternoon in June 2014. We had been searching for the perfect dog for our family for weeks. We had been to several adoption events that day with no luck. There were a lot of cute dogs, but none that felt just right. We decided to stop by the Rescue Rovers adoption event. We had previously spoken with a couple of the board members from Rescue Rovers about what kind of dog we were looking for. One of the board members, Jodi, asked us if we had met Ki. We had seen him on the website and weren’t really interested. He was much smaller and younger than what we were looking for. She told us to just go meet him. We got in touch with the foster, Christina, and headed over to her house to meet Ki. When we rang her doorbell, little did we know that our lives were about to change. As far as meet & greets go, it probably wasn’t spectacular. The dog ran upstairs and hid from us. The foster got him downstairs and he ran under the couch to hide. We went in her backyard to see if we could get him to warm up to us. He seemed to really like our kids, but he wanted nothing to do with Thomas or I. He would move away from us if we got anywhere near him. But something about him touched our hearts and we just knew that he was supposed to be part of our lives. The very next day, we signed the adoption contract and he was ours.
He bonded with me pretty quickly, and then with the kids. It took about a week for him to bond with Thomas. But with patience and a lot of work, he started to come around. We slowly learned a bit more about Alfie’s past. He and his sister were taken from their mother too young and abandoned at a shelter in Blackfoot, Idaho. His sister was adopted but he was left alone in the shelter. Rescue Rovers came to the rescue and pulled him out of the shelter. He lived with a couple of different fosters. He was adopted and returned a couple of times because he didn’t bond with the families quickly enough. He was too much work and too scared of everything. I’m not going to lie, it’s been a long tough road with Alfie. We have been working with an amazing trainer, Robyn, owner of Kudos2Canines. With her help we crate-trained him, taught him to walk on a treadmill, and learned about tethering. All of these helped with his extreme anxiety levels. She taught us different ways to mentally stimulate him to help calm his anxiety. We were surprised when he passed Basic Obedience, pleased when he passed Intermediate Obedience, and so very proud of him when he graduated from Advanced Training and passed his CGC test. He has been going to Doggie Day Camp at Robyn’s training facility and learning how to play with other dogs and make friends. He has made HUGE progress.
We love our baby boy, and cannot imagine life without him. Please help us pay for Alfie’s surgery. Pet insurance does not cover pre-existing bilateral injuries (like ACL tears) or hip dysplasia. Should additional funds be raised, they will go into a savings account for Alfie’s future medical bills, as there will be many.
Born: January 2014 in Blackfoot, Idaho
Favorite treats: broccoli, carrots, apple slices and cheese
Favorite things to do: chase his adopted dog brother, play in the snow, eat the snow, fetch ropes & tennis balls with his human sisters, snuggle with Mom on the couch, jump on Mom’s bed to wake her up in the morning, hike Millcreek Canyon, go see Robyn & Tucker at Doggie Day Camp, and play with the foster dogs who live at our house sometimes.
All profits from my digital scrapbook store at Pixels&Co (minus commission fees & monthly overhead) will go to pay for Alfie’s surgery as well.