Rusti's vet bills

$1,800 of $1,800 goal

Raised by 45 people in 57 months
Rusti is a three-year-old yellow Labrador retriever. She has been my guide dog for more than a year now. In that time, she's been extremely healthy.

Last week, upon returning from her first cross-country trip, she became lethargic, refused to eat, and vomited frequently.  At first, I thought she was just reacting badly to the stress of travel. We had been to a convention in Las Vegas, and we'd been surrounded by approximately 1500 other blind people, their guide dogs and canes. It was overwhelming for me, so I assumed it was for Rusti, too.

She hadn't improved by Monday of this week, so I took her to her veterinarian. At first, pancreatitis was suspected. We assumed that Rusti had eaten some food item that didn't agree with her. However, after some additional testing, the vet suspected an intestinal blockage.  On Tuesday morning, Rusti had emergency exploratory surgery. The veterinarian removed a foreign body from her intestine. Without the surgery, Rusti would have died.

She saves my life on a regular basis; how could I not do the same for her?

Now, I am faced with a large vet bill. I live on a fixed income, and while I can take care of the normal expenses associated with a dog, this is not a normal expense.

Thanks in advance for whatever help you can give. I know times are tough for everyone right now. If you can't donate money, please share this page with as many people as you can.
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Goal reached! Wow! Thank you so, so much to everyone who donated! Thanks also to everyone who shared this page on Facebook and Twitter. I had no idea I'd reach goal so quickly. Unfortunately, Rusti seems to have developed a minor infection around her incision. I'm going to speak to the vet tomorrow about that, but hopefully it won't be an issue that stronger antibiotics can't fix. I'll keep everyone posted on Rusti's progress. I am just... overwhelmed by gratitude for all of you. Again, thank you.
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Rusti continues to do well. She is eating about 2 tablespoons of food every three hours. She's still taking her antibiotics, but no longer seems to need pain meds. She's kind of bored and unhappy about being leashed to me or in her crate all the time, but, well, that's what happens when you have major surgery, pup. Here's another photo of Rusti from the other night. This was the result of my mom trying to get all artistic. It's a black and white photo of Rusti sitting in my mom's kitchen. You may or may not be able to see her very stylish ace bandage wrapping. Thanks again to everyone who's donated and/or shared this page. We are so close to goal! I cannot possibly express how much easier all your generosity has made things for me and Rusti.
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Just did Rusti's last small meal and round of meds. Also rewrapped her bandage. Here's a picture of her from just a little while ago. This ordeal has made her lose quite a bit of weight, but she's still pretty darn cute. Thank you so, so much for everyone who's donated and shared Rusti's page. We are so close!
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Rusti is doing well today. I am giving her a tablespoon of food every three hours because we don't want her internal incisions to rupture. She thinks this is the worst thing ever. She also keeps trying to lick the area where her stitches are, so now her waist is bound with an ace bandage. She looks really classy. :) I'll get someone to take a picture of her new look as soon as I can. Meanwhile, here's another old picture. This was taken by my instructor when Rusti and I were in training together. She's cuddling with me on a grooming bench. We had only known each other for a few hours at this point. Thanks so much to everyone who's donated so far. Keep sharing the page; we are so close! I cannot possibly express how grateful I am to everyone who's donated and/or shared this page. Thank you all so much!
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$1,800 of $1,800 goal

Raised by 45 people in 57 months
Created July 24, 2014
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NB
$10
Noah Barker
57 months ago

good luck!

$20
Anonymous
57 months ago
NJ
$60
Nadine and Jen
57 months ago (Offline Donation)
$10
Anonymous
57 months ago
LR
$25
Lauren Rodriguez
57 months ago

I hope Rusti gets better soon! I'm praying for her.

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