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Save Taco

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Dear fellow animal lovers,

I'm sure you can imagine the horror of receiving bad news about your beloved animal friend. I recently learned that what I thought were signs of aging in my seven-year-old friend, Taco, were actually symptoms of a large tumour in his chest. It's the size of his heart. It is pressing on his heart and taking up lung space. He has slowed down a lot but is still eager to visit, eat, walk, etc.

After speaking to the vet again we are about to do a $2000 biopsy which will tell us which of two bone cancers we are dealing with, and a $3000 CT scan to tell us if the cancer has spread and by how much (this will determine whether or not surgery is an option, even if it's the "good" cancer). We are doing these tests in Victoria on May 8 and expect the biopsy results back 10-14 days later. We are using what has been raised here to pay for the CT scan to find out if surgery is an option. If it's not an option I will make arrangements for a gentle farewell. If it is an option we will find out if the post-surgery prognosis has changed since we met with the vet on April 27 and go from there.

THANK YOU SO MUCH for your support thus far. You really have helped more than one life have a little more joy.

I am doing something I rarely do and am asking for your help. I have had a rough few years which depleted most of my savings. Last year was rough enough I was officially recognized as a Person with Disability. My limited income is stretched thin even though my life is simple – my greatest joy the last few years truly has been making sure this sweet dog has the life he deserves. He had a rough start in life yet has been so loving and friendly and always happy to go at the pace my body demanded, whether that allowed us a little road trip, a walk in nature, or a recovery day in bed.

Since he came to live with me we have been together 24/7 almost every day. I've been so lucky to have jobs he's welcome at. He's become beloved at the Comox Valley Seniors Village where we try to go a few days a week, and at a handful of local businesses we frequent (most of all the pet shop where he LOVES to watch guinea pigs). Almost every day people stop me to ask if they can pet him or take pictures of him, to ask what mix he is, to comment that he's got eyes like a human, or to commend me on how well behaved he is (I never take credit – he's just built that way). He's made such an impression on others that sometimes strangers will ask me if I'm walking Taco – they recognize him only through hearing about him from a friend or family member! He even has a bit of a social media following from people all across Canada and at least seven other countries!

This is not just a pet and I'm not asking for help for myself. Taco truly has become a valuable member of a community, bringing joy to many. As every little bit helps please donate what you can for the surgery that will not only help him enjoy many more years of beach walks, treats, lying in the sun, and watching guinea pigs, but help him continue to brighten the days of many strangers and friends – maybe even yours?

Six years ago, while I was searching for a dog to adopt and thinking Taco would be a great name, unbeknownst to me, this dog was on a road to recovery and to Vancouver Island. He had been found in a gutter in Tijuana after being attacked by other dogs and made his way here via a network of helpful vets, fosters, and other volunteers. He also had seven abscessed teeth that came out shortly after he came to live with me. Through it all, he was calm and gentle and stoic. He never complained.

It was love at first sight when I saw him at a local community event. I told the people at the other end of his leash that it looked like they had my dream dog. I gushed about why he was exactly what I had been looking for, for at least four solid months. Incredibly, after a bit, they said they'd got him from a rescue organization a couple of weeks earlier, had now realized he wasn't a fit for their home, and maybe I could apply to adopt him! Then I found out he was from Mexico and had primarily survived because a woman with a Taco stand had looked out for him! I got my Taco dog!

See you at the beach!

Thank you very much for any kindness and generosity you can provide.

Taco Belle (aka Taco's Momma)

PS You can see more of Taco at Hearts for Hire



  • Michael Opatril
    • $100 
    • 1 yr
  • Anonymous
    • $100 
    • 1 yr
  • Kamaljeet Shergill
    • $50 
    • 1 yr
  • Lisa Pedneault
    • $100 
    • 1 yr
  • Anonymous
    • $100 
    • 1 yr

Organizer and beneficiary

Simone Thompson
Courtenay, BC
Carman Thompson

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