Apollo’s Surgery

First off, I want to say thank you so much for clicking on the link. Our almost 8 month old puppy, Apollo, was recently diagnosed with elbow dysplasia in his front left paw. He has already seen 2 specialists who both confirmed the diagnosis and recommended surgery before it got any worse.

On January 15, 2018, I lost my best friend in the whole world, my first Bernese, Rocket.  He passed 5 short days after his cancer diagnosis. That day, told myself I would never get another dog again. I spiraled into a deep depression, as my boyfriend and I moved into our new house the following day; the house we chose specifially for its big fenced-in yard just for Rocket. There are no words that describe the empty feeling when your best friend isn’t there to greet you at the door. I was heartbroken (and I still am).  Fast forward about 3 weeks later, something was telling me I needed to love another dog just like Rocket. After doing extensive research and picking a breeder who I felt  comfortable with, I decided to pick up my new 9 week old puppy who looks just like Rocket.  In fact, Apollo, is named as a tribute to Rocket. Apollo has mended a big chunk of my heart that was ripped out of my chest, which feels like it was just yesterday. After experiencing Rocket’s suffering, I promised Apollo  I would never let that happen. 

Right now, Apollo is not suffering.  However, I refuse to let that happen. Unfortunately, he has been limping since about April.  My vet first figured it was growing pains as it happens with big breed dogs. After no signs of improvement, I took him back. They suggested to rest him and gave him some pain meds. Again, he wasn’t feeling any better. We took him to an orthopedic who suggested X-rays. We did just that. It was confirmed in the radiology report that he has elbow dysplasia. We were totally shocked as I made sure I picked a Breeder who had both parents OFA certified. The vet recommened that I see a different specialist who can perform arthroscopic surgery. We went and saw the surgeon, Dr. Puccio, today. She said surgery ASAP is ideal so he doesn’t develop arthitis in his joint. 

I scheduled his surgery for August 29th. The vet bills leading up to his diagnosis have already been almost $900. The estimate the surgeon gave me today is roughly $4,600.  The insurance company is refusing to pay for any of his bills, as they are claiming this was a “preexisting condition.”   The vet is requiring the surgery to be paid in full the morning I drop him off.  I’m sure all of you know how  extremely difficult it is to lay out that sum of money in one day. I would do literally anything for Apollo, he is my everything and is my child. Only true dog lovers understand this type of love. He’s not “just a dog”, he is my best friend. 

Every cent will help to go towards his surgery. If you can’t donate, I thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to click on the link and read my story.  Please share and spread the word to help my baby get better!!!
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Andrea Lee 
East Shoreham, NY

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